Curb Appeal: Entryway

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Curb Appeal: Entryway

Apr 18, 2011

You only have one chance to make a first impression. So, what constitutes a first impression? If you are meeting someone for the first time, it is your demeanor, your handshake, your smile, and the words you (hopefully, carefully) choose. If someone is coming to your house, it starts before they step in the door. The curb appeal of your house is crucial to making that first impression, either when entertaining or when selling your house. Everyone is going to start forming impressions, and (for possible buyers) making decisions, before they ever see anything in the house. It’s not just kitchens that sell homes. However, curb appeal can be broken into several areas: the condition of the front yard hardscaping, front yard landscaping, the roof, and the entryway. Today we’re going to focus on the entryway; specifically, how to honestly assess your entryway and ways that you can start coming up with curb appeal ideas.

Having a good front entry is a great way to wow any guests to your home and to prepare for selling your house. There are things to consider when thinking about improving your home’s entryway. First, what is the architectural style of your house and what is the landscape design that will best compliment that architectural style. This will dictate what types of materials you will use in revitalizing your entry. Second, how much light exposure does your entryway get? This will directly affect the types of plants that you decide to use. Third, what is the budget for the project? Creating curb appeal for your entryway on a budget is possible, but you will need to be careful in what choices you make.

As with any landscaping project, you should consider making room in your budget to retain the services of a professional landscape designer. After all, even a low-cost entryway makeover is money wasted if it looks worse than before you started. Container gardens make beautiful additions to a backyard or courtyard, but they can also greatly improve the curb appeal of your entryway. Consider if and what type of gravel you will use around the entryway, what types of plants you want to use, and what kind of lighting you want for your entryway. Prospective buyers (and certainly visitors) might be coming to your house at night, so lighting is an integral component of the curb appeal of your house’s entryway. These are all important considerations that an expert landscape designer can help guide you through.

Keep an objective eye on the entryway of your house. If it looks “ok” to you, it might look bad to a prospective home buyer. Likewise, if it looks “good” to you, it might only look “ok” to a buyer. Ask your friends and family for their objective opinions…and be sure to tell them that they’re not going to hurt your feelings. After you’ve gone through the effort of making an honest assessment of the curb appeal of your entryway (and remember to focus on only the entry in this effort), make a list of the things you would like to change.After that, prioritize that list. As you prioritize, keep in mind the potential cost of each of those changes. Also, deter\mine how much of an impact each of them will make on the curb appeal of the entryway.

Once you’re ready to proceed, and you have your prioritized list of improvements you would like to make. Determine which of those you can, reasonably, complete on your own. Ultimately, for those big and dramatic changes, a professional will always be able to steer you in the right direction and it will probably end up being cheaper in the long-run. Most importantly, don’t rush into anything. First observe, then form opinions, then collect advice, then proceed with a plan. Only after you have carefully considered all of your options should you make any action.

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