Moving into a new home often sees owners frantically focusing on getting the interior looking just right before inviting guests over.
But the exterior is even more important, says Mike Greeff, chief executive of Greeff Christie’s International Real Estate.
It is the first view of the home that people get when they arrive, and the key is to create a lasting impression from the moment your guests pull up and the trick to doing that is by enhancing your entrance.
“Improvements to your property are definitely steps in the right direction. Creating a memorable entrance does not only boost kerb appeal but it will also be advantageous when you want to sell.”
As expensive as things are these days, sprucing up the entrance to your home does not need to cost an arm and a leg – all you need is some creative inspiration and a bit of DIY.
* Show them the way: One of the most underrated, yet most efficient, ways to improve your house’s kerb appeal is by laying down a clearly marked path. It is essential you get the width correct – more often than not, pathways are too narrow, so ensure that you leave enough room for two people to walk side by side.
Greeff says there are various kinds of walkways. A few ideas are stepping stone walkways, flagstone walkways, brick walkways and gravel walkways.
* Keep it clear: Trim overgrown trees and bushes that block the view of your home and walkways.
Instead of having plantings spilling over, opt for flowers and plants that you can grow inside quaint-looking containers. These are easy to maintain, easy to re-arrange and they do not block the view of your home.
Greeff advises homeowners to install low-cost, low-voltage outdoor lighting as this not only adds to the safety and security of the home but it gives accent lighting and can illuminate a pathway.
* A popping point of entry: Having a door that stands out from the rest of the house is a definite wow-factor, Greeff says, and adding a punch of colour to your door is a quick, easy and inexpensive way to revamp a tired-looking entry.
“A bold, colourful door also sets your house apart from the rest and makes it easy to find.
“People often pick colours for their front door that they wouldn’t pick for their interior walls and it’s where many homeowners often feel they have a little more freedom to go wilder with colour.”
If you need some inspiration, he offers a few colour guidelines.
If you want to have a statement front door, choose bolf, vibrant colours like pink, turquoise, red or yellow. These colours create a stunning entrance to your home and can help to brighten up the greyest of days.
If you’re not feeling quite that adventurous and would prefer to play things safe then opt for your favourite variation of grey, black or green. These colours are classic, sophisticated and timeless.
* Replace the hardware: It is time to toss out all your dingy and out-dated hardware, such as the house number, overhead lighting and mailbox. These are just a few elements that can add style and interest to your home’s kerb appeal and, if they are tatty and rusted, Greeff says, it will not convey the aesthetic you would like.
He adds: “These elements work better collectively so instead of having a mix-and-match aesthetic, rather go for a similar style and feel. For example, if you have more of a traditional home, go for oiled-bronze finishes as it adds to the old-world charm of the property.
“Should you have a contemporary home, brushed nickel suits it best and will give it a more modern look and feel.”
The important thing to always consider is the style of your home.
“If you have a traditional home, choose classic, timeless finishes that will complement your home. If you have a more contemporary-styled home, opt for modern finishes that will add a bit more pizzazz.”