Renovation Resort Showdown's Scott McGillvary On A Surprising Feature To Boost Curb Appeal - Exclusive

While there are plenty of design trends for decoring the interior of a home, that doesn't mean it should be the only focus. The exterior deserves as much attention and thought, being an opportunity to make a first impression. Scott McGillvary, who co-hosts HGTV's "Renovation Resort Showdown" with Bryan Baeumler, says that the exterior was one of the factors they paid attention to when judging the competitors. "[W]e're working with the competitors to make sure they're taking into consideration the curb appeal and the shore appeal," McGillvary explains in an exclusive interview with House Digest, "because those are the first two things that guests are going to be looking at when they're making a decision as to where they're going to go."

Even if your home isn't a rental property, the exterior is an important factor in the overall design. "[I]t is that first impression, it is that cover of the book," McGillvary says. The exterior of your home is what you'll see as you pull up to it, it's what guests will see as you welcome them in, and it's what strangers will see as they pass on the street. There are plenty of details that affect a home's curb appeal, but McGillvary emphatically tells homeowners to start with the front door.

Boost curb appeal with the front door

Among all the details that contribute to a home's curb appeal, for Scott McGillvary, the front door is where homeowners should put their initial attention. "The front door can create a lot of energy, it can create a sense of calmness," the real estate investor says. "It's the first thing that people touch when they arrive to a property." The front door welcomes you and guests into the home and can be the initial hint to the aesthetic of the interior, depending on style and color.

McGillvary also urges homeowners to focus on the smaller details: "You're going to want to look at the hardware on your door. You want to put a door light in there." Upgrade the door hinges, especially if they're old or discolored. Replace them, for example, with matte black finishes for contemporary aesthetics; meanwhile, gold can add a little bit of glamor. A porch light on either side of the door can help illuminate the façade at night and make the front door more of a focal point.

The finish of the front door is also an important contributor to curb appeal. "Look at the color," says McGillvary. "Sometimes a coat of paint, something simple like that, can change the entire energy of that front door." Neutrals colors and red are more traditional, while shades like yellow and orange are unconventional but have tons of personality.

Beyond the front door

Once you have the front door settled, Scott McGillvary suggests looking at the area around it and the exterior as a whole. "Everything around [the front door] — the steps, the numbers, the lighting, all that hardware in that area — that would be the simplest and first place I would advise somebody to concentrate their efforts on," McGillvary says. Consider the font and size for the address numbers, the lighting fixture, and the pathway leading to the door, which all create a design vignette.

Then, work on matching the design you created around the door to the entire home. "[H]aving a consistency with the rest of the exterior," McGillvary explains. "[W]hat's the field color of the property, the accent color of the property, and what's your trim color?" Consider the color of the entire façade, whether it's red brick, painted brick, or stucco, and how it relates to the trim color, window color, and the front door.

New episodes of "Renovation Resort Showdown" air Sundays at 9:00 p.m. ET on HGTV and are available to stream on MAX.