I’ve briefly mentioned in a couple other posts that I am in the process of flipping my dad’s house to sell. I’ve been snapping a few before, during and after photos with my camera phone for now as the project comes along.
BOY is flipping a house a process- but in a good way! I wanted to take you along the journey of my home flip and give you some tips and pointers I’ve learned along the way. First, let’s talk about Curb Appeal. I knew that before this house could sell, it needed some heavy duty TLC, especially in the curb appeal department. So throughout the planning and execution process for the exterior of the home, I came up with these 5 easy ways to update your home’s curb appeal:
1. Pressure Washers are your friend: Give your home a bath. Before we started any updates on the exterior of the home, we wanted a clean slate: for us, this meant washing the siding, windows, foundation trim, garage doors, and all concrete on the property (front stoop, driveway, back concrete patio.) If you’re a new homeowner or just want to breathe some fresh air onto your property, I highly recommend pressure washing your exterior. I got SO excited when I started washing the patio and saw a tremendous difference (goodbye grime and moss!) Sometimes you don’t really realize how much dirt and grime accumulates over time on well traveled places- a good pressure wash will give your exterior a clean feel. See photo below- the distinct line on the stoop is before (left) and after (right) the pressure wash.
The above photo also leads me to my next point: 2. Give your home a simple upgrade with a touch-up paint job. As you can see above, the concrete stoop was left with remnants of the old burgundy paint job. I touched up the steps and sides by adding an exterior paint similar to the home’s siding (‘Dark Ash’ from Pittsburgh Paint) to complete the easy update. This is the same paint I used to touch up the foundation trim of the home- also with remnants of the burgundy color. Don’t limit yourself to just the foundation trim or front porch/stoop- if your doorway or door is in need of a paint job, as well as other parts of the home’s exterior, paint away! Just be sure to use a weather and mildew resistant paint, and one with a built-in primer. I haven’t decided if I am going to paint the front door or just outright replace it when I replace the storm door- I’ll keep you updated!
3. Add or update pre-existing landscaping. This was a biggie for the house. As you can see, the landscaping efforts in the before photos below were quite questionable. The home was actually my uncle’s before it was my father’s, and from what I heard, those circular concrete rings had been there since the house was built roughly 30 years ago! Now, if you’re working with a clean slate for landscaping your home, this can be a fun DIY weekend project to tackle, just do some research on what plants go best with your location and how to maintain them. However, I did not have the time (or honestly the energy) to focus on the landscaping because at this point, we were already gutting the kitchen. So I went with a professional local landscaping business (Kellor & Kellor – Muscatine, Iowa) to handle the dirt, planting, mulching and disposing of those dreadful concrete rings ( there were six of them, weighing in about 200 pounds each!!! Definitely left it to the pros.) We picked a mix of flowers (Hydrangeas and Day Lillies) and low shrubs, all low maintenance plants that don’t require much shade and just need a bit of watering.
4. Tidy up your yard! Yes, this sounds like a basic tip but it’s easy and does wonders! Treat your yard as if it was an interior room- picking up the clutter will do wonders, and it doesn’t take much work! If you have kid’s toys, lawn or sports equipment and anything else not mentioned, find a place for them all. After picking up, do some lawn maintenance if you’ve got the time- mowing, weeding, running the sprinkler, watering plants, etc.
5. Add simple cosmetic features and upgrades. This doesn’t have to be a major project, but simple upgrades can go a long way. Replace your exterior light fixtures and add new, LED or energy efficient light bulbs; replace or update your mailbox; add potted plants or other seasonal decor to your front porch. The options are endless and don’t have to be difficult.
One last tip…
Before starting any project, always put coffee first!! (But make sure you do drink plenty of water especially when working on big projects.)
Have you updated your home’s curb appeal and have any tips to add?
Still a work in progress but here’s what the outside of the home looks like now with the new landscaping and touch-up paint: