Curb appeal is one of the most important parts of your home’s value. It affects how quickly your home can sell, what it can sell for, and sets the tone for the rest of the home’s staging. In a nutshell, curb appeal refers to how well your home looks from the street, and there are a lot of different things that can impact it, from dirty roofs and siding to subpar landscaping. Along with inexpensive ways to repair or clean the interior of your home, there are a lot of ways you can improve your home’s curb appeal – many of which cost under $1,000.
With estimated costs from Fixr.com, here are five projects to consider.
Stain Your Deck
A deck or porch can play a major role in your home’s curb appeal, particularly if it’s visible from the street or is something that gets a lot of use on a regular basis. Older decks in particular need to be stained to help keep them looking their best. Over time, that stain can peel, chip, or fade, which means it needs to be replaced. Doing so can help your home look better and protect your deck from damage.
Cost. The average cost to stain a deck is around $2 a square foot, taking three to five hours to complete. The total cost will depend on the size of your deck, and the area it’s located.
Money-Saving Tips. Decks need to be power washed before they can be stained; handling this job yourself can save you a significant amount of money.
You may also opt to stain the deck yourself, which can also lower the costs substantially.
Hydroseed Your Lawn
A lush, green lawn can really make an impact on your home’s curb appeal, but so can a patchy, brown, or dirt-filled yard. Make sure your lawn is in the best possible shape by tackling a hydroseeding project. Hydroseeding disperses fresh new grass seeds throughout your lawn to help fill in bare patches and encourage it to grow in thicker. This fairly inexpensive lawn treatment can make a powerful visual statement once it’s through.
Cost. The average cost to hydroseed your lawn is between 50 cents and $1 a square foot, depending on your location and whether or not you DIY.
Money-Saving Tips. Purchase a seed that includes fertilizer to help rebuild the grass you already have and help your whole lawn get off to a better start, so you don’t need much further maintenance.
Invest in a spreader and tackle this job yourself to save on labor fees.
Clean Your Siding and Roof
Algae, mold, dirt, and debris can dull your paint and make your roof look unsightly. What’s worse, some of these things left unchecked for extended periods of time can harm your roof or siding as well. Taking the time to have your roof cleaned and your siding power washed can help improve your home’s curb appeal while also helping to protect these areas from future damage.
Cost. The average cost to power wash your siding is around $360 for a 1,200 square foot home.
The average cost to clean a roof is around $250 to $300.
Money-Saving Tips. Both of these jobs can be done DIY to help save money. You could invest in a power washer – available at many home improvement stores – because regular washings to help prevent debris from building up, which will lower the amount of time needed to clean both areas.
Trim Your Shrubs
Shrubbery enhances any landscaping, adding color, depth, and interest to the scene. But untamed shrubs can grow out of control, taking over surrounding areas, blocking light from the house, and making your curb appeal take a nose dive. Trimming your shrubs can help improve the overall look of your home, and help keep plants healthy, so they continue to do their jobs for years to come.
Cost. The average cost of trimming your shrubbery is $39 a shrub, assuming you get 25 shrubs trimmed at once. However, total costs can range from $15 a shrub trimmed DIY to $48 a shrub during high season.
Money-Saving Costs. Get your shrubs trimmed early on in the season before peak to save a significant amount of money.
While tackling this job DIY is not for everyone, if you’re careful and have a good eye, you can save money by putting in the work.
Seal Your Asphalt
An asphalt driveway can make or break your home’s curb appeal. Well-maintained asphalt sets the tone for the approach to the home, but asphalt that’s cracked and full of potholes can put people off. Sealing your asphalt when cracks begin to appear can not only improve its looks, it can also extend its life by preventing things like potholes from occurring. Colored asphalt is also available that can help you dress up your driveway and improve your overall curb appeal.
Cost. The average cost for sealing 500 square feet of asphalt is $654. Total costs range from $51 for a DIY job to $694 for epoxy sealing.
Money-Saving Tips. Seal your asphalt as soon as you notice cracks appearing. If cracks are left too long, they could develop into holes, which will require patching before sealing – or even a new driveway – raising your costs significantly.
Tackle this job DIY to save even more; all you need is a push broom, the sealant, and a sunny afternoon.
Improve Your Curb Appeal
These five small improvements to your home’s landscaping and exterior won’t cost you much, but they will pay off big when it comes to your home’s appearance and resale value. If your curb appeal is starting to slip, start tackling these jobs to help get it back to where it needs to be.
Yuka Kato is the cost wizard at HowMuch.net. Yuka writes about home improvement tips and tricks to help homeowners learn more about improving their properties. She also delivers useful cost information you can use to help improve your own home at HowMuch.net.