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In Desperate Need of Curb Appeal

22 days ago

Hi there! We are under contract for this house we intend to flip. I can’t figure out what to do with the exterior to give it a little more curb appeal! We plan on power washing everything, replacing the front door (color?), and landscaping. I don’t think the tan/off-white trim is doing this house any favors, but I can’t come to any solution. I keep reminding myself that everything will be green in a few months, but I still want to bring this house to life! Any ideas?!

Comments (19)

  • misecretary

    Suggestions: Remove the shutters. Replace the posts in the entry area with a bigger ones.

    Have you thought about accenting the sunburst in a darker color?

    jngraham92 thanked misecretary
  • kitasei

    Has house flipping become respectable enough to be entitled to free professional advice?

  • hazelcraddock

    She/he didn't have to say it was a flip and why would house flipping be unrespectable if done with intergrity. I always like to see what suggestions are made as they may help me with my house. I also like the idea of bringing "the house to life", of making it more attractive, of improving what is there instead of building new.

    jngraham92 thanked hazelcraddock
  • suezbell

    Definitely remove the shutters.

    Wrap the two posts to create one wider support.

    Where there is a horizontal board atop the porch that is lower than the bottom of the forward facing gable -- has brick on the left side of its edge -- re do that trim adding what is needed to cover what you have, extending the same horizontal trim all the way across the bottom of the gable.

    Put the House Number on the new porch post, perhaps with a light above it that will illuminate it at night.

    Recreate the gravel area between driveway and sidewalk to be one "paved" "landing" at least one step above the driveway and one step beneath the sidewalk/porch. Create a pattern with the bricks/pavers you use to create that landing -- not just a concrete slab.

    Use the same bricks/pavers to create a modest curb alongside the driveway rather than a ditch and cover that slope between yard and curb with shade friendly ground cover or plantings.

    Us the same brick/pavers to clad the vertical edge of the front porch.

    Remove the plastic rings around the base of the trees,

    Get shade friendly grass and/or ground cover and/or moss growing in the front yard.

    You could choose a shade darker for the painted siding -- picking a darker color from the brick. Doing that and using a bold color for the front door, would make the garage doors less visually dominant and the front entry the focal point of the front of the home.

    IF you could find a painter skilled in detail work that could paint the starburst in the gable end -- a muted pumpkin color IF you're keeping the current gable end color -- then, do -- but a solid color is better than shoddy work.

  • PRO

    The approach to the entry is a mess. Would be nice to have a clean, simple walk & no gravel. Remove all the edging materials. They are not needed and are eyesores. If soil spills onto a walk, fix its grade. I'd remove the secondary walk if it's not useful or needed.

    Given the shade, i's probably not a yard that would grow grass. In that case, make it all low groundcover. (You'd just be starting it and mulching.) If there are low hanging limbs, remove them.

    It'd be nice if you could get some windows in the garage door and unite the two skinny posts into one, or replace it with a beefier, more graceful post, or column. I wouldn't enhance the sunburst siding. Best if it lies low.

  • suezbell

    Agree that removing that through the center of the yard sidewalk would be a good idea but, if it leads to the mailbox some people-- though not I -- seem to want one. If you filled in the ditch beside the driveway to create a curb to keep dirt from spilling onto the driveway and then have it lead to the mailbox (or move the mailbox to beside the driveway) that would solve that.

    You cannot always remove dirt around trees to correct a grade because you damage roots of trees close to the surface. Whether sidewalk or just a curb, the dirt pouring onto the driveway needs to be stopped and the edge of the driveway and sidewalk clearly defined.

    If you go with a narrow sidewalk alongside the driveway, you could create a small attractive planting area in the corner and turn the sidewalk to encircle that planting area to lead to the mailbox.

    A good mail box already in place with the number on the mail box or its post or as the community requires would be a good idea, too.

    Like what Yardvaark did with the wide gravel area in front of the porch by the driveway. That well defined driveway look is something to aspire to as well.

  • PRO

    It's not necessary to change grade near trees in order to fix it near paved areas. Adjacent to paved areas, the soil surface would taper down such that after being mulched, its level does not exceed the level of the walk. This might create a minor slope adjacent to the paved areas, but one adjusts the width of the band of tapering so that it is not too severe. Groundcover, as it fills in, holds the mulch and soil in place

  • Denita

    I like what Yardvaark shows you in the way of cleaning up the entry and the landscaping.

    I would paint the front door a brighter cleaner color so that it comes out visually from the dark recesses where it is now. Try a green from the landscaping or the color of the flowers if they are coral or in the oranges. A brighter friendly color.

    • Do remove the shutters
    • Do paint the gable end (facing the street) and garage doors darker.
    • Do enlarge the post
    • Add lighting in the covered porch area
    • Add the address numbers so they are visible from the street in a clean line, not scrolly, format.

  • jngraham92

    Thank you all! If I’m honest, none Of your recommendations had even crossed my mind. I appreciate your help in livening up this home! I do believe the landscaping will have a dramatic effect, and I appreciate the advice around the paint colors, post, and shutters.

  • Denita

    You have many greens that would work. IMO I would get a clean green from the landscaping and not a grayed out green in your specific case.

    light blue siding with bold front door - Google Search · More Info

    Exterior · More Info

    ^Maybe even a yellow green.

    pale yellow front door with blue siding - Google Search · More Info

    ^Orange would work too.

  • shivece

    I love trees, but I would get rid of the tree that is right next to the house.

  • housegal200

    Agree that shutters have to go. Spend your budget on decent hardscaping at the entrance and well-designed foundation landscaping and extended beds. A golden taupe would harmonize with the yellow brick. A brighter door would make the entrance more inviting. This house incorporates these suggestions. ]

    Golden taupe trim, red door, slate entryway

    Or golden taupe for siding and green for front door (though no shutters).

  • celerygirl

    I like existing door color! And cream trim goes good with brick, then dark muted green garage door ans siding.

    jngraham92 thanked celerygirl
  • housegal200

    Love the first green photo, celerygirl and the entryway in the last photo. Looks amazing.

  • jmfdesign2

    You don't say where you live, which affects your landscaping choices. Also, you don't say how close the two trees that are blocking the windows are to the house. Leaves falling on a roof cause it to deteriorate. I would take those out if they are near the house. You could have a pretty planting bed around the remaining tree that would extend to shrubbery at the foundation of the house to tie it into the garden. I like the green color suggested by celerygirl for the garage doors. No shutters! Beefier post. A glass and dark metal front door would be expensive but very modern and more interesting than the red door. First impressions count for so much. The post should then match the door.

  • gardengal48 (PNW Z8/9)

    Folks have a tendency to become overly alarmed about trees planted close to a structure :-) As long as they are in good health and are not touching the structure, they typically present minimal issues. I certainly would not have concerns about leaves on a roof!! First, they will blow off with the first decent wind - do you see any leaves on the OP's roof?? - and if they don't, the necessary routine roof and gutter maintenance will take care of them.

    Trees are a valuable landscaping asset and mature ones like these contribute to property values. Just make sure that they are in good health, are maintained properly and are not sited where they block easy access or obscure desired views.

  • Cristy Giddens

    At the least remove the tree against the house. Discard the shutters, use Cultured Stone on the walls of the offset at front, left side and inside porch. Paint the brick! Yep, the whole house. Use Hardi Plank shakes on the front gable. Replace the post with cedar or pine 6x6 posts with brackets slightly cut on an inside curve, stained a natural weathered cedar color. Remove the rocks and paving rounds and replace with a sidewalk from driveway to entry. I would also remove the sidewalk to the street if possible. Kill off existing lawn and replace areas you want to keep as lawn with sod. For the garage doors paint the same color you paint the brick rather than making them a focal point but add an awning or pergola like structure that matches the new porch posts over the garage doors. Front door with 3/4 glass or full glass and a decorative porch light would be nice.

  • Sigrid

    I suspect when you remove the shutters, you'll have a big expanse of brick and smallish windows. Trim color will matter.

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