Clever Curb Appeal Tricks HGTV Stars Swear By

Curb appeal isn't only important when you're trying to sell your home — it's also about making your property look attractive from the street, adding to the overall enjoyment of your house even while you still live there. But when it does come time to sell, it can certainly help with your home's marketability. "There is no point renovating the inside of a house to the nines if buyers are going to drive right by it because the exterior is an eyesore," Property Brother Jonathan Scott told viewers in a clip for HGTV on YouTube. "This is the buyer's first impression. You have to make a good one, and that will determine whether they're going to drive right by or stop and investigate further."

Scott and his fellow HGTV stars are no strangers to creating curb appeal. From massive renovation projects like repainting your home's entire exterior to smaller works like simply spending a day mowing, edging, and mulching your lawn, there is always something you can do to improve your home's outward appearance. No matter your budget, the age of your house, or the amount of time you have to invest in the project, these are the best clever curb appeal tricks that all the HGTV stars swear by.

Swap out lighting for a good impression

When you purchase a new-build home, you might think that because everything is brand new, it automatically has great curb appeal. However, sometimes these developer homes seem a bit industrial and too sterile. If the features are too bulky or even too cookie-cutter, things don't seem quite right. To fix this, something as little as swapping out the outdoor fixtures can make your house look a lot more like a home. "I think swapping out lighting [is important]," Jenny Marrs told Apartment Therapy. "Sometimes you buy a house and you have some builder grade lighting on the front porch and that really is the first thing people see."

Instead of a bright, fluorescent lightbulb with no fixture, try adding a bulb that has more of an amber glow. This won't be as jarring to look at for both guests and wildlife come nightfall. Plus, the type of fixture you choose is a great way to express your personality. This swap won't break the bank and doesn't take too long, either.

Repaint your front door

A sometimes-neglected piece of curb appeal is the front door. While we focus on the landscaping and porch, the door itself needs attention too as it's the portal into your home. Because of their high use, front doors can take a real beating and be covered in grime and scratches. If cleaning isn't enough to bring it back to life, it might be time to repaint. "What's your favorite color to paint a door?" Hilary Farr posted on Facebook. "Sprucing up the front door with a fresh coat of paint really elevates curb appeal."

The right color for you heavily depends on 1) the colors you like and 2) the shade and tone of your home's existing features. You want your door to complement your home, not clash with it. In Season 19, Episode 5 of "Love It Or List It," Farr proves that sometimes even non-traditional colors can work well for front doors, as long as they are styled well. In this case, the door came out a jet black, which might be shocking if left alone. Yet Farr was careful to style the rest of the portico with a deep natural wood. Instead of standing out, the door blended right in. The two darker shades worked well together and looked very visually appealing. With this in mind, the possibilities are endless.

Flower boxes add a touch of summer

If you're worried about the summer heat making your yard look more like a piece of scorched earth than a home with good curb appeal, Mina Starsiak Hawk, co-star of "Good Bones," has an easy solution for you. Instead of leaving everything green in your yard to wither and die, head to your local plant nursery and pick up a few flowers to breathe new life into the space. "Summer is the best time of the year to add curb appeal to your home," she told House Beautiful. "An easy project would be to add flower boxes beneath your windows. They are simple to DIY and won't break the bank."

Instead of waiting for flowers to grow, buying already-bloomed buds is great for making things look more lively. By the end of the afternoon, you'll have reds, purples, and maybe even oranges standing out from all that brown grass. You can build the boxes yourself if you're feeling like a good DIY, but you can also buy them ready-made at the store if you don't have the time.

Invest in native plants for long lasting returns

Choosing native plants for your yard can drastically increase your curb appeal in the long run says "Curb Appeal" host John Gidding. Native plants are ones that naturally occur in your area, even without landscaping. These might be cacti in an arid climate or elephant ears somewhere more tropical. "The most impactful way that homeowners can improve their curb appeal these days is by moving towards native plants," Gidding told Homes & Gardens. "The homes that install an eco-conscious landscape today are going to have values accrued to them tomorrow. It's the perfect solution because they are attractive to pollinators, and they add visual interest."

Because native plants are used to the local climate, they are going to require less overall work to keep in great shape."There's a different energy to this new movement of front yard landscaping that is not just eco-conscious but also budget-conscious," Gidding said. "Because you're going to use less water into the future." This is also true of how the plants look throughout the year, as Gidding went on to explain that native plants tend to change more with the seasons. Due to this, your yard looks great all year long.

Choose an exterior paint color that you love

The best paint color for your curb appeal is one that you love the look of. It's important that you don't mind the hue you see every day when you come home from work, even if it is a little bit unconventional. Joanna Gaines agrees. "I'll always ask my client, 'How do you want to feel when you look at your house?' because choosing a color is more of an emotional thing, a process of psychology," she told MyDomaine. "I always say have fun with your color selection but be sure to choose something you won't regret five years from now if it falls out of style."

Even so, Gaines did provide a little guidance on colors she prefers as they tend to go over well with her home design clients. "I'm drawn to shades that have stood the test of time," she continued. "Including neutrals like gray and beige and nature-inspired colors, such as green and blue, along with some bolder, darker options." Yet she does have a clear favorite — leafy greens. When selecting the color for your home, lean into your preferences, too, although it's always worth investigating whether or not your HOA has any color restrictions to save yourself any hassle of red tape down the line.

Spend a day or two revamping your lawn

You don't need to buy a single thing to increase your curb appeal, but multiple HGTV stars insist that you will need to invest a few hours of sweat equity to really make a difference. "Landscaping can be really expensive, but there are a lot of ways that you can amp up your curb appeal without spending a fortune on hard and softscapes," Drew Scott said in a video for HGTV. "The easiest thing is just clean it up. Having a well-maintained exterior shows pride of ownership, and that's invaluable. And it's as easy as just trimming back shrubs, adding a coat of paint where needed, and just adding some color and interest through plants and outdoor features."

Lyndsay Lamb and Leslie Davis agree, telling HGTV, "Give your landscaping a little TLC: Pull weeds, refresh your mulch, cut back overgrown plants, and add new flowers and potted plants where necessary." It doesn't take much time — sometimes just an afternoon in the yard here and there. Rake up the dead leaves and cut the dead branch off the tree that's been an eyesore all summer. You can even rent tools from places like Lowe's or Home Depot if you don't think you own what's necessary to get the job done, like a power washer to clean grime off the siding.

Try painting the trim a different shade, not color

Knowing the colors to paint your home's exterior can be daunting. Knowing you might need to pick another one for the trim can be enough to push you over the edge. Luckily, the professionals have taken the hard work out of it for you and have a clever trick to try: Choose two shades of the same color for the siding and trim instead of two entirely different hues. "I like to add some dimension by painting the trim just one shade lighter or darker," Bobby Berk told Better Homes & Gardens. "Just look at the paint swatch of the house color, and choose the one that's one level above or below it."

Even if you decide to branch out just a little bit more, Berk reminds those at home to never go too wild with color choices lest you compromise your curb appeal. Instead, even if you want bright and bold colors, never mix more than three different ones. And yes, your red brick home counts as a color. By limiting the palette in this way, you avoid a visually overwhelming exterior.

Add personality with unique features

Whether or not to make your home stand out can be a difficult choice when it comes to curb appeal. Yet the answer is easy enough: You want to stand out — but for the right reasons. Your home should not be eye-catching for anything wild or garish, but for the lovely features that work well and give your home a personality. "You want to know what homebuyers are looking for before they walk into their new home? Exterior personality. Curb appeal is extremely vital to many would-be buyers. And that makes sense, too," HGTV designer Breegan Jane said on her blog.

Creating this personality just takes a little bit of planning. "I love making an impression with my design, so I had a portion of my exterior home demolished to add something dynamic," Jane continued. "I incorporated this wooden Moroccan gate and had it custom painted to one of my favorite colors. I loved how it turned out." When thinking about how to add personality to your home, you can follow Jane's lead in installing a unique garden gate. Eye-popping colors or non-traditional designs can really help these features stand out. A well-maintained rose trellis climbing the side of your house, a gas-lit lamp in your front lawn, or even a porch swing are also ideas with similar intent.

Increase your yard's biodiversity (and value) with landscaping

Attracting the right kinds of wildlife to your yard is great for curb appeal. While you might not want snakes or rabbits around, attracting birds and bees can help your flowers thrive through pollination, which looks fantastic. Wildlife being present also points to a healthier local ecosystem, which can be attractive to many buyers. The best way to keep your lawn healthy and the wildlife thriving is through intentional landscaping. "Landscaping can create habitats for animals. Landscaping can decrease soil erosion. It can decrease water runoff," Karen E. Laine of "Good Bones" told HouseDigest. "There are a lot of environmental aspects to your landscape. It can not only help make your home more beautiful and more enjoyable and create shade for when it's hot, it can help the world be a better place. Why wouldn't we all want to do that if we could?"

When buyers first approach your home, they might notice if there are birds chirping and nice places to relax outdoors. They might also notice if your property seems to be devoid of all life, both animal and plant. "Landscaping is the first thing that tells a potential buyer whether or not anyone cares about the house," Laine continued. "You don't have to spend a lot of money to let people know that [you] paid attention to everything that a potential buyer might need, starting with what kind of curb appeal does your house have."

Lean into your home's style

One of the best tricks to make your home's curb appeal all it can be is to not try to make your home something it isn't. That is, if you have a mid-century bungalow, don't try to style it like a colonial, and vice versa. Instead, think about the parts of your property that make it unique and lean into those. For example, when Drew Scott worked with a client with a mid-century home, he drew lawn inspiration from the trends of that era instead of contemporary design. "I wanted the landscaping to be reflective of the era of the home, so I did a lot of geometric plantings and added an architectural feature just to break up that front facade," he told HGTV. "But the front door, and that pop of color, I'm telling you, that is the cherry on top of this mid-century pie."

To recreate a similar look at home, first determine your home's style. If you're living in an Art Deco home, lean into the same geometric shapes that were popular in that era for the trim on your siding or front door design. Also consider using great symmetry, as that was popular during the time. If you have a new build, it's likely still mimicking a design of the past, like a farmhouse, post-modern, or even brutalist home. The key to curb appeal is emphasizing the unique features of these styles and incorporating them.

Add house numbers to make your home easy to find

You've probably experienced the awkwardness of trying to find a friend's home when they don't have the house numbers clearly visible. Yes, they might be painted on the curb, but when you're pulling up to the property, you can't see them, especially at night. Even with a GPS, sometimes you can't be sure if you're at the correct house or should be knocking on a door two plots down. USPS, Amazon, and even DoorDash drivers could have the same issue, resulting in annoying mixups. If you're selling your house, potential buyers will easily be put off if they can't find where they're going.

Luckily, solving this issue is easy with a little help from "Help! I Wrecked My House" star Jasmine Roth. "House numbers are another quick and easy way to add to your curb appeal and I take full advantage of this with every single project I do," she wrote on her blog. However, you shouldn't pick just any old numbers to plop onto your house. Instead, a little bit of planning to match the style will ensure curb appeal remains high. "Lean into your home's style when choosing numbers," she continued. "If you've got a home with lots of natural, organic elements, I'd probably go for some reclaimed wood house numbers. Or if you've got a modern beachy home, a metal set of numbers paired with wall-mounted succulents would be an awesome touch."

Invest in shrubs for low-maintenance stunners

Sometimes the secret to a well-kept lawn is simply investing in a lawn that's easy to take care of. If you don't dread the upkeep and also know you don't have to spend every Saturday out gardening in the heat, you might be way more likely to keep up with the chores. To put you well on your way, Martha Stewart recommends shrubs. "If you are looking for year-round appeal and relatively easy care, look no further than hard-working shrubs," she told MiracleGro. "Shrubs are nearly low- maintenance. Plant them, feed them occasionally, prune them maybe once a year, and enjoy."

One of the best things about shrubs is that they still look good all year round. Yes, the ones that produce flowers only tend to bloom for a few weeks in the summer. Yet, "for the remaining weeks, the shrub's other attributes determine its impact on the landscape," Stewart said. "That's why, when selecting shrubs, you should always take the four-season perspective." When the plants aren't in bloom, they still hold a certain shape, providing a great backbone and visual structure to your yard. For the best results, plant shrubs symmetrically across your flowerbeds. This way, your lawn will feel the most balanced.