33 Curb Appeal Ideas to Elevate Your Home Year Round

When you think of curb appeal ideas, does a white picket fence and impeccable landscaping come to mind? While those are both lovely and certainly add to the curb appeal of a home, they can be pricey.

The good news is that front yard curb appeal ideas don’t have to be super expensive or time-consuming. When it comes to how to add curb appeal to your home, we’ve got some great ideas we can’t wait to share, like cheap simple front yard landscaping ideas and decor for the exterior of your home.

Beautiful green home with a curved arch over the front door.

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What Is Curb Appeal?

Curb appeal is the visual attractiveness of a home and its yard as seen from the street or sidewalk. There are many factors that contribute to a home’s curb appeal, including the cleanliness, landscaping, and overall charm. Curb appeal is especially relevant if you are thinking about selling your home. The more curb appeal the home has, the more likely you will get potential buyers in the door for a showing. It can also mean a higher valuation and selling price too.

For long term homeowners, you’ll want to infuse curb appeal in ways that will last. This means potentially investing more money into professional landscaping or opting for natural stone front steps and walkways versus concrete. If you are a shorter term homeowner and especially if you are looking to sell your home within a few years, you might opt for some of the more quick fixes that are budget friendly, like painting your front steps or creating a mailbox garden. Whatever you decide, just be sure you follow any association guidelines if you have a neighborhood HOA.

Front Entrance and Porch Curb Appeal Ideas

The front entrance and porch are the main focal points of your home. They welcome guests both new and old into your space, so it makes sense to invest some time and money into making them look good. Here we’ll cover ten curb appeal ideas for your front entrance and porch, including options that make a big impact for under $50 all the way up to more big ticket ideas if you’re looking to splurge.

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1. Paint Your Front Door

Close up of a yellow house with a bright blue door

One of the main focal points of the outside of a house is of course the front door. Painting your front door is a great budget friendly way to improve curb appeal while infusing your unique taste, and as a bonus it’s pretty easy to do. To make sure the new paint lasts, you’ll have to prep the door before painting by removing the hardware, washing, and then sanding before applying a primer. You should only need a quart of paint, so all in this curb appeal idea should cost you less than $50.

2. Replace the Hardware

A person installing a new handle to a front door.

If your front door is in good shape but feeling a little drab, try changing out the hardware for a low cost but big impact refresh on the front of your home. Find a balance between something you love while also honoring the style and age of the home. For example, don’t go super modern on the hardware if your home is a colonial style. Home improvement stores have all kinds of options to choose from when it comes to door knobs, locks, and handles, and they’re often sold in sets to maximize savings.

3. Add Colorful Pots and Plants

Red carnations in different types of pots lined down a front entrance stairway

This low maintenance front yard curb appeal idea allows you to get creative and add some color. Place a few pots of various sizes on your front steps and fill them with colorful flowers like geraniums or petunias – you can even coordinate with the color of your front door or shutters. Keep in mind that these flowers will require regular watering and sun. If you’re not up for maintenance, try large decorative pots instead (they don’t have to be filled with flowers to add charm).

4. Install a Beautiful Fence

Beautiful yellow house with a white picket fence surrounding it

A classic white picket fence is the gold standard when it comes to adding the charm factor to the front of your home. If you have a small front yard that is easy to fence in, this is the perfect option for creating that idyllic front yard. If your front yard is large or hilly, it might not be feasible or cost-effective, but that doesn’t mean you have to scrap the idea. Try using just a few fence panels at the start of the sidewalk to your front door and frame the rest with some hedges. Architectural antique stores are a great place to look if you only need a couple of panels.

5. Upgrade With a Bed Swing

A large bed swing with many pillows in teal and striped teal colors.

One way to up the front yard curb appeal of your home is to make it feel more inviting. Does anything else welcome visitors better than a comfortable bed swing? Larger than porch swings, bed swings can comfortably seat more people and glide more smoothly. Add in some outdoor pillows and a blanket to your bed swing to make it extra cozy. You can expect to pay a few hundred dollars for this option, plus some for installation.

6. Hang a Wreath

Beautiful pastel wreath with daisies and roses on a pastel pink door with a black lion door knock.

Wreaths are a nice piece of decor for the exterior of a home, and contrary to popular belief, they do not have to be seasonal. Wreaths made of materials like dried eucalyptus, succulents, or moss can work for any season and are only around $20. There are even wreaths made of pom poms and other fabric that are great for having up year round. Play around with placement of the wreath too. If you have a long front porch a wreath can break up the bare exterior wall and add some interest.

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7. New House Numbers

One key to having a beautiful home on the outside is to make sure it’s clearly marked. Upgrading your house numbers is another budget friendly way to add some curb appeal. You’ll find lots of styles and sizes available, so again aim for house numbers that are similar to the existing hardware and style of your home. Think through the placement before installing the new house numbers. Does the current spot make sense? Are the house numbers well-lit at night?

8. New Light Fixtures

Porched front entrance with medium-colored wood door and trim, new matching square light fixtures at the top of the porch and next to the door.

One way to get the look of a house exterior renovation without the cost and time is to change out the light fixtures. New fixtures can have a big impact on the overall look and feel of a home, especially from the outside. There are unlimited options out there at home improvement stores and online for anywhere from $10 to $200 or more. Try to find fixtures that both match your style and also the style and age of your home. Make sure to follow safety precautions like turning off the breaker and using a voltage tester when installing the new fixtures.

9. Tile Your Doorstep

Front door entrance with manicured trees framing a tiled walkway that goes all the way to the doorway.

If you’re feeling a bit more ambitious, tiling your doorstep can make a big difference in home curb appeal. You’ll want to be sure the tile you select is made for the outdoors. In general, larger tiles are best for an exterior entry and are cheaper than small tiles. Options like natural stone or brick are perfect and durable enough to last a long time.

10. Update Porch Railings

Large cream colored house with a wrap-around porch

If your home has porch railings, giving them an update either by painting them or replacing them entirely can really increase curb appeal. Painting will require some prep work and can be tedious due to the nature of the railings, so you may consider hiring a professional. If you opt to replace them, there are many weatherproof options available today that will keep them looking good for many years.

Windows and Doors Ideas

Windows and doors are probably the next likely focal point visitors notice from the curb. Many of our options in this section are very cost-friendly, and all of them you can do yourself. A simple exterior cleaning of your windows and doors or a fresh coat of paint can go a long way in creating curb appeal for your home.

Noticing bugs and critters creeping in by your windows? Learn how to get rid of them and keep them out.

11. Clean Windows and Fix Chipped Paint

Man standing on a ladder and cleaning windows.

Keeping your home’s exterior clean and well maintained is one of the simplest front house ideas for improved curb appeal. Wash the exterior of your windows twice per year (spring and fall) and while you are up there take note of any chipped paint or siding. It may not be noticeable from the street now, but the longer you let them sit the worse they will get and can have the potential to cause damage.

12. Add Window Boxes

View from below of a white home with wood trim on the windows and matching window boxes with purple flowers.

If you enjoy gardening, this is one of our favorite front yard landscaping ideas on a budget. You can get really creative with the types of flowers you plant, and even tie in the colors with your home’s accent colors like the front door or shutters. Aim for different colors, textures, and heights of the plants to keep it interesting. You’ll find window boxes in a variety of sizes and materials, and they usually start at around $50 per box.

13. Install Window Shutters

Exterior window shutters add that perfect charm factor, especially if you have a ranch or farmhouse style home. Although it’s possible to install window shutters on your own, you may want a friend or family member available to help. While most original shutters were made of wood, there are now weatherproof options that make maintenance a breeze. You can expect each window shutter panel to be around $100 at your local home improvement store.

14. Update Door Trim

Red front door with matching framed windows.

Whether or not you are painting your front door, updating the door trim can add a nice touch and improve the curb appeal of your home. Aim for a neutral color like white or tan that will really make the door color pop. You should only need a quart of paint, a brush, and painter’s tape, so this option is very cost-friendly. To maximize the longevity of the door trim paint, follow the prep steps like sanding down the existing trim and applying a primer before the paint.

Exterior Home Curb Appeal Ideas

Other items on the exterior of your home that are noticeable to visitors from the street and sidewalk are your gutters, mailbox, and siding. There are a few simple things you can do here to really make an impact, such as ensuring your gutters and siding are cleaned on a regular basis. Most of the options in this section are cost-friendly and can be done on your own.

Some DIY upgrades like painted roof shingles can bring new life to your property while you plan your next renovation.

15. Clean Gutters and Roof

Hand pulling leaves out of a gutter to clean it

Cleanliness and upkeep of the exterior of your home can really go a long way in adding overall house curb appeal. Cleaning your gutters and roof is not just for aesthetics though. Clogged gutters and roofs can lead to winter roof leaks and more severe damage to your home down the line. Add this to your seasonal cleaning checklist to ensure your gutters and roof are performing at their best year round.

16. Repair or Replace Gutters and Downspouts

View from below of cream gutters and downspouts with the sun setting behind

As you are cleaning your gutters and roof, take note of any broken, cracked, or otherwise damaged gutters and downspouts. If you have leaf guards, make sure those are intact as well. Repairing damaged sections of your gutter system will help ensure that water is draining properly away from your home.

17. Update Your Mailbox

A black mailbox with a small garden at the bottom lined with small stones and bricks

If your mailbox has seen better days, either replacing or giving it a fresh coat of paint can increase your home’s curb appeal. Even just updating your house number on the mailbox can help. Another option here is to create a mini garden at the base of your mailbox. This is a great curb appeal front yard landscaping idea on a budget because you only need a few plants to make an impact.

18. Clean the Siding

Man power washing white siding

Keeping the siding clean of dirt, debris, and bugs is another simple and cost effective way to increase the curb appeal of your home. It can be as simple as using a wet rag to wash the siding, or you can use a power washer if your home has some extra tough grime.

19. Decorate For the Seasons

A fall-colored wreath on a brown door of a stoned house. There are pumpkins, and flowers next to the door by the stoop.

Front yard ideas on a budget can be as simple as adding a few seasonal decorations throughout the year. A wreath on the front door is simple, readily available, and fairly cheap yet has a big impact. You could even make your own if you are feeling ambitious. Try adding some seasonal plants or foliage to your front steps or tasteful lights.

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Gardening and Landscaping Curb Appeal Ideas

If you’re looking for cheap and simple front yard landscaping ideas, you’ve come to the right place. Your front yard should feel warm and welcoming to guests, and you can achieve that through plants and flowers, proper maintenance, lighting, and more. Let’s take a peek at some of our favorite curb appeal landscaping ideas.

20. Plant a Tree

A freshly planted tree being watered with a watering can.

One landscape curb appeal idea that is also good for the environment is to plant trees. If you’re looking to add immediate curb appeal, aim for a fast growing flowering tree like the rosebud, magnolia, or cherry blossom. They’ll provide beautiful color in the springtime and will grow quicker than some of the other tree options. One thing to keep in mind with this idea is that new trees will require lots of water, so be sure you’re ready for the commitment before planting.

21. Create a Mailbox Garden

Green mailbox at the end of a driveway with a small garden of yellow and orange flowers surrounded by a small picket white fence at the bottom of the post

A mini garden around your mailbox provides some visual curb appeal while also eliminating that awkward spot you have to mow around your mailbox post. We love zinnias for mailbox gardens like this one because of the variety of bright colors and their height. For the perimeter, use stones found around your yard or pick up some paver edges from your local home improvement store.

22. Manicure the Hedges

Hedges being trimmed with a long trimmer

Don’t let your hedges and other plants get out of control. Pruning your hedges will maintain the overall cleanliness and curb appeal of your home. Remember that there are certain times of the year you should trim your hedges. Avoid doing this mid-summer when it’s hot and dry and instead opt for late spring or early fall.

23. Use Flowers for Stylish Edging

Purple perennial flowers, hostas, and other plants cleanly line the walkway to the front door.

Flowers are a quintessential curb appeal landscaping idea, and if done right they can provide color and interest all spring and summer long. Line your walkway to the front door with a mix of flowers. Daffodils, phlox, and hydrangea provide a good mix of color and size. Try adding in some evergreen plants like boxwood or juniper for the textural element, and plants like the hosta work well if you have shaded areas.

24. Refresh Planter Beds

Raised planter beds with

As we mentioned earlier, keeping a clean and tidy garden can go a long way in upping the curb appeal of your home, and that includes any planter beds you have. Try to make weeding a habit; it can seem like a tedious task but can be quite meditative and make your planter beds and garden look so much better. Vegetables and herbs are great for raised planter beds because you’ll generally have less weeds and better soil drainage.

25. Incorporate Outdoor Art

Have you considered adding outdoor art in your front yard decoration ideas? A tastefully placed garden sculpture or bird bath can add some visual interest to your front yard. You may even consider some hanging art if you have a long front porch with blank wall space. A decorative wall clock, flag, or woven object can add a nice touch to the blank space. Other outdoor art options include bird feeders, wind chimes, and weather vanes.

26. Add an Arbor or Trellis

A backyard fence with a white, arched, arbor doorway.

If you have blank space on the front or sides of your home, adding a trellis will provide visual interest to an otherwise bare spot on your home. Pick a climbing flower like clematis or bougainvillea to plant at the base of the trellis and watch it climb. Additionally, arbors can provide that visual interest at the entry to your garden or walkway. Arbors are a bit more expensive than trellises. Expect to pay somewhere between $100-200 at the low range for an arbor.

27. Use Stones to Fill Garden Space

Garden with small rocks lining the pathway and larger rocks filling in the space between plants

Stones are a good garden filler while also providing some curb appeal. Aside from the visual benefits, stones allow for better drainage than ground soil. They also are a more permanent option than mulch, straw, or other garden fillers. And we can’t forget that you’ll have minimal weeds due to the very limited amount of light that they allow through.

28. Illuminate the Landscape

Brick pathway illuminated by small lights between bushes.

Why not show off your beautiful new landscaping at night too? Illuminate your landscape with outdoor path lights. Most of them are now solar powered, making them easier than ever to maintain. There are plenty of style options out there, and many come in value packs to minimize cost. Some even have fun light patterns to choose from.

Pathways and Driveway Ideas

Pathway and driveway upgrades are sometimes overlooked, but can go a long way in upping your home’s curb appeal. A common misconception is that it’s very expensive and while that is usually the case, it doesn’t have to be. Here we outline some pathway and driveway ideas for increasing curb appeal that don’t have to break the bank.

It can be tempting to take on home improvement yourself but some tasks, like DIY gutter installation, aren’t worth the risks.

29. Update Old Walkways

Keeping your walkways updated can help with the curb appeal of your home and also the safety. If you have a brick or other natural stone walkway, are all the pieces intact? Are the gaps between stones full with grass or sand? If you have concrete slabs, repair any broken pieces and make sure they are relatively level.

30. Paint and Refresh Garage Door

Beige and gray home with natural brick colors for accents. Clean garden wraps around front walkway.

For homes that have a visible garage facing the street, keeping the garage door clean and updated will increase the curb appeal of your house. If your garage doors are looking a bit old and worn, you can either replace them entirely, or paint the existing ones. If painting, take the proper prep steps to make sure the paint job lasts for as long as possible.

31. Paint Stoop Steps

Painting the stoops of your front steps is a fun and unexpected way to add curb appeal to your home. Paint them a solid color that coordinates with the rest of your home, maybe the same color as the front door or the door trim. Try adding a stripe along the side of the steps, or maybe you add a painted faux runner in a different color. You can get a little more creative by trying the stencil step trend. Keep in mind that prepping to paint will depend on the type of material your steps are made out of.

32. Power wash Away Dirt and Grime

Wood porch being power washed with a stark contrast between the clean wood and dirty, dark wood.

The best way to remove dirt and grime from the exterior of your home is to spray it down with a power washer. If you don’t own one, your local hardware or home improvement store should have them available to rent for a reasonable price. Be careful with the delicate areas like power outlets, doorbells, and any shrubs or plants surrounding your home.

33. Reseal the Driveway

Beautiful home with two 2-car garages and a sealed, clean driveway

If your driveway is asphalt, take some time every spring to inspect the condition. Are there any visible cracks or surface flaws? To repair them, start by clearing the driveway of dust and debris and repairing holes or cracks with blacktop repair. Apply the sealant starting at the edges of the driveway first and working your way in. Aside from the blacktop repair and sealer, you’ll want a squeegee and maybe even a paintbrush for the edges.

Curb Appeal Tips

As you can see, you don’t need to do exterior home renovations to have a home with curb appeal. Simple projects like cleaning, painting, and gardening can have a big impact (and you may just have some fun along the way too). Before you start a project, take a look at our top curb appeal tips.

  • A Little Cleaning Goes A Long Way: before spending lots of time and money on replacements, first try cleaning
  • Use Cohesive Colors: try to coordinate colors on the exterior of your home to keep a consistent look and feel
  • Don’t Go Overboard: if you decide to go bold with a pattern or color, make sure to tone it down in other areas so it’s not overwhelming
  • Consult With Your HOA: if you live in a neighborhood with an HOA, be sure to check the rules and regulations before starting any exterior project
  • Invest Only in Projects With Good ROI: even if you are a long term homeowner, it’s always worth considering the return on investment for each project you tackle
  • Use Symmetry: symmetry is pleasant to the eye, so try to incorporate it where you can like in your landscaping or window boxes

MEI: Trust The Experts For Your Biggest Curb Appeal IDEas and Projects

MEI has been in the business of improving homes since 1947, so it’s no surprise we have so many ideas for improving your home’s curb appeal. We also know which projects will have the best return on investment, which projects you should tackle if you are selling your home, and which projects are best left to the professionals.

We love sharing our knowledge with you, so browse our blog for even more common home questions and problems answered, like how to spot hail damage, how to prepare for a snow storm, and painting vinyl siding.

MEI is here to help with big home exterior projects like roofing, siding, and gutter replacements so you can focus on the smaller things and enjoy your home. Reach out to MEI for a free estimate today!