Mar 15 2013

15 Tips for Improving Your Home’s Curb Appeal

An eye catching blue door on this Nantucket Rental

An eye catching blue door on this Nantucket Rental

Interested in a sure-fire way to make your vacation rental home more attractive to vacationers?  Kick up its curb appeal! Your listing will be more eye-catching to prospective guests, and think of how thrilled people will feel when they drive up to your home! Here are some relatively simple and inexpensive curb appeal upgrades.

  1. Paint the front door. A splash of color can do wonders for adding curb appeal to your home. A realistic DIY project or you can hire a professional to handle the task.
  2. Add new front door sconces. Distinctive lighting to frame a front entryway is a great way to add curb appeal. Make sure your sconces are the right size – too large or too small can detract from the appearance of your home. A helpful rule to follow is for the fixture to be 1/3 the height of the door if there is only one fixture and 1/4 the height of the door if there are two fixtures flanking the door.
  3. Add some flair to your home by affixing distinctive house numbers.
  4. Add some visual interest to your front door with a unique doorknocker or seasonal wreath, or replace the front door hardware.
    A classic American flag on this Harwich vacation rental

    A classic American flag on this Harwich vacation rental

  5. Display an American flag – it’s not only patriotic, but it offers color, depth and even motion if there’s a breeze.
  6. Add some traditional molding to the top and sides of the doorway.
  7. Affix window boxes to the first floor windows on the front of your house and fill them with colorful annuals to provide instant charm.
  8. Plain, empty front porch? Add wooden rocking chairs, colorful Adirondack chairs, or even a swing. Consider all-weather cushions or hanging annuals for a pop of color, too.
  9. Clean the exterior of your windows. They will sparkle!
  10. Do you have an inviting walkway to your front door? Adding one does not require you to break the bank. A simple gravel, crushed brick, or crushed shell path is an inexpensive alternative to bluestone or
    A welcoming front door on this Nantucket vacation rental

    A welcoming front door on this Nantucket vacation rental

  11. Add a planter at the front door and fill it with some greenery.
  12. If your garage doors are visible from the street, you may want to consider adding similar hardware to that of your front door.
  13. Update the doormat. A tattered and worn doormat does not make for a great welcome. There are so many distinctive and fun doormats. Buy a few and swap them seasonally.
  14. Add some plantings to line your walkway or the front of your house. Boxwoods and hydrangeas are lush, but not overwhelming, and they’re low maintenance. Come summer, add some colorful impatiens, and you have guaranteed curb appeal.
  15. Keep up with routine maintenance: trim hedges and keep mulch turned, gardens weeded, and grass watered and mowed.

As with any upgrade you make to your vacation rental home, be sure to photograph the changes and update your listing afterwards. And don’t forget to partially open your front door when photographing it to convey a sense of welcome and openness.

Do you have any other suggestions to share with fellow homeowners?

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15 Tips for Improving Your Home’s Curb Appeal
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About the author

Susan Hutchins

Susan H. - I am a recent addition to the WeNeedaVacation team, joining them in early 2012. I write website and blog content as well as promote WeNeedaVacation.com through social media. Having grown up spending summers on Nantucket, I have a strong connection to Cape Cod and the Islands. I now live in New Hampshire with my husband, two children, and golden retriever puppy, and we are frequent visitors to the Cape. I love running local road races, the Brewster in Bloom 5K being a favorite. My family enjoys biking on the Cape Cod Rail Trail, hiking in Nickerson State Park, and relaxing on the beautiful beaches (usually a dog friendly one!). Email Susan


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  1. on ap Lioa

    I have already tried some of them ourselves and have found that if the home looks great, the renters take great care of it. A tip: Don’t cheat your summer guests by undercharging

  2. alexandra gundelfingen

    Thanks for good advice

  3. Robert S Gibb

    Hey Dave,

    Susan got it right – http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/curb?show=0&t=1380109767

  4. Maria

    Muchas gracias, aporta consejos certeros

  5. kathy

    Curb means both the border of a roadside and, as a verb, to prevent something. If I remember correctly, they are homonyms. Kerb is a Britishism…in the US it’s curb. Just fyi…
    And we all need to keep our houses looking neat and attractive.

    1. Shannon Russo

      Very well put, Kathy. Thank you!
      Best, Shannon

  6. Janette Sergio

    Careful with the impatiens. The standard ones have been suffering from fungal diseases the past few years and lose all their leaves.

  7. William Whitman

    Susan Hutchins’s curb appeal recommendations are perfect. We’ve already tried some of them ourselves and have found that if the home looks great, the renters take great care of it. A tip: Don’t cheat your summer guests by undercharging. You need that rent increase to chase out the mice, paint the porch and purchase the new door mat. They will thank you for it.

    1. Shannon Russo

      That’s wonderful to hear, William, and you’ve made an excellent point about not under charging. We’d love to hear which curb appeal suggestions you took Susan up on!
      Best, Shannon

  8. Dave Wright

    Perhaps you should check the text of your site. Curb means to prevent something, surely you mean kerb appeal?

  1. 6 Details of a Well-Dressed Vacation Rental Home | WeNeedaVacation.com Homeowner Blog

    […] Add Architectural Detail: It doesn’t take much to add some visual interest to your rental. Adding window trim, door casings and exterior shutters are step one. If you’ve already got those elements, plan a makeover with a weekend paint job. Next, add custom railings to the porch and patio. Because a vacation home can bear just a little more accessorizing than most homes, consider finishing it off with adorable, old-school awnings. Also, see Susan Hutchins’ post, 15 Tips for Adding Curb Appeal. […]

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