DIY Landscaping Projects to Instantly Boost Curb Appeal and Your Home’s Value
Tackling a few DIY projects in the front (or side) yard has the potential to add distinction and an extra dose of class to your home. No matter your skill level, there is likely a landscaping project that you can carry out with little to no help from a professional to pump up your home’s curb appeal and therefore add to your home’s value.
How Important is Curb Appeal?
If you’re thinking of selling your home in the near future, it’s a perfect time to choose a few different ways to upgrade your landscaping, especially out front where it has such a big impact on buyers. Most buyer’s first impressions come from looking at the front of your home, and it sets the tone for how they feel about your entire property, including their perception of its value. Read on for some projects that you can do to instantly add curb appeal and, ideally, cash to any offer you receive.
Keep Things Clean
This is a simple thing you can do with little to no equipment or know-how to keep your landscaping looking its best. Keep grass tidy and flower beds weeded. Take care while weed eating and edging. Keep hardscaped areas cleaned and swept. Add fresh mulch each year to keep it from appearing tired and faded. Simply keeping up with the basic maintenance in your yard will go a long way towards maintaining curb appeal, and it’ll keep potential buyers from getting a bad taste in their mouth over something small.
Add Nighttime Interest with Outdoor Lighting
Outdoor lighting adds a very dynamic and expensive look when its done well. While you may think of outdoor lights that shine on the front of your home and help showcase your landscaping as a large project requiring expensive equipment and professional installation, that’s not necessarily the case. Vast improvements in solar technology mean that you can put in high-quality outdoor lighting that doesn’t require an electrician to install. Aim lights at architectural or landscaped features for maximum punch.
Build a Flower Bed
This is one of the most versatile projects you can do. There’s a flower bed design out there to suit literally every style, and you can make this project as big or as small as you like. There are so many different materials you could make your flower bed from, or you could even opt for a mound-style feature that can be placed to help improve drainage on your property. Even a little border around your mailbox with a few plants and a new layer of mulch can make an impact.
Plant an Exceptionally Beautiful Tree
People love shade. It’s a simple fact. They especially love when a potential home has plenty of it since it means more pleasant outdoor experiences and potentially lower utility costs. Trees tend to offer a great return on investment, as well.
A few tips to help you nail tree-planting:
- Choose a variety that does well in your USDA hardiness zone.
- Evergreens add visual appeal for a larger part of the year.
- Remember to water your tree frequently as they tend to need a little help getting settled in.
- Call your state’s utility marking service before you dig; it could save your life and your cash!
Make sure the existing trees in your yard look their best, as well. Trim trees as needed and be sure you remove dead or dying trees.
Make Sure the Drive is in Tip Top Shape
Regardless what your driveway is made of, making sure that it looks its absolute best is a quick way to make sure that your home’s curb appeal is maxed out. If you’ve got a gravel drive, consider having a layer of gravel delivered and take time to spread it carefully. If your drive is concrete or brick, a good cleaning with a pressure washer or specially designed chemical compound should do the trick. Blacktop or asphalt drives can be a little trickier, however, and may require professional resurfacing.
Create a Pretty Barrier
A landscaped hedge and/or retaining wall can add a lot of value to your home. Both these projects can be fairly large undertakings, either in time or money, but they’re likely worth the trouble if you have the perfect spot for one.
Hedges provide great barriers, breaking up large spaces and adding a sense of privacy between your yard and a neighbor’s. While planting these isn’t too big a deal, it’s important to remember that they will take time to mature and that most hedges do require regular trimming so that they remain looking neat and tidy.
Retaining walls are a great way to add elevation to your landscaping and the variation in materials can bring a unique look to your front yard. They do require a bit more know-how, a stronger back, and definitely more equipment than many of the projects on the list, but with adequate planning and a little moral fortitude, you can absolutely put up a retaining wall yourself.
Put in a Patio
Outdoor living areas are great for helping people visualize themselves in a new home. Even if they’ll never actually take their coffee out to the little garden bench and watch the sun rise in the distance, that they can imagine it is enough. A small patio with a seating arrangement set off to the side of your home can provide just that.
Putting in a patio could cost you a bundle depending on the material you choose, but it doesn’t have to. You can use inexpensive paving options or even repurpose rock or wood planks that you already have. Patios generally require little specialized equipment, but it could require a lot of shovel work and lifting, so you may want to have a couple strong backs on hand to help you out.
Walkways are very similar in cost and labor output, and if you don’t already have an attractive walkway between the driveway and front door, they can make an even bolder statement than a patio.
Jumping in to DIY Landscaping
If you’re not sure which projects would most benefit your home’s curb appeal, ask your realtor or others who could give you an unbiased opinion where your efforts would be best focused. The imperfections in our homes eventually start to slip past us and fresh eyes could be just the ticket for finding the perfect project to make your home shine. Happy landscaping!