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11 Cheap & Easy Ways To Create Great Curb Appeal
First impressions count — not just for your friends, relatives, and the UPS guy, but for yourself. Whether it’s on a small stoop or a Victorian front porch, your front door and the area leading up to it should extend a warm welcome to all --- and doesn’t need to cost a lot.
Here’s what you can do to make welcoming happen on the cheap:
#1 Get Rid of Overgrowth
Ideally, the path to your front door should be at least 3 feet wide so people can walk shoulder-to-shoulder, with an unobstructed view and no stumbling hazards. So get out those loppers and cut back any overhanging branches or encroaching shrubs.
 

#2 Light the Pathway

Landscape lighting makes it easy to get around at night. Solar powered LED lights you can just stick in the ground, requiring no wiring, are surprisingly inexpensive. I found 8 packs for under $60 online. 
 

#3 Paint Your Door

Borrow inspiration from London’s lovely row houses, whose owners assert their individuality by painting their doors in high-gloss colors. The reflective sheen of a royal blue, deep green, crimson, or whatever color you like will ensure your house stands out from the pack.
 

#4 Add a Door With Glass

A door with lots of glass is a plus for letting light into the front hall — but if you also want privacy and a bit of decor, check out decorative window film. It’s removable and re-positionable, and comes in innumerable styles and motifs. Pricing depends on size and design; many available for under $30.

A way to get the look of stained glass without doing custom work or buying a whole new door: Mount a decorative panel on the inside of the door behind an existing glass insert, $92 for an Arts and Crafts-style panel 20-inches-high by 11-inches-wide.
 

#5 Replace Door Hardware

While you’re at it, polish up the handle on the big front door. Or better yet, replace it with a shiny new brass lockset with a secure deadbolt. Available for about $60. 
 

#6 Add a Knocker

Doorbells may be the norm, but a hefty knocker is a classic that will never run out of battery life, and another opportunity to express yourself (whatever your favorite animal or insect is, there’s a door-knocker in its image). 
 

#7 Plant Evergreens

Boxwoods are always tidy-looking, the definition of easy upkeep. A pair on either side of the door is traditional, but a singleton is good, too. About $25 at garden centers.
 

#8 Make Your House Numbers Stand Out

Is your house number clearly visible? That’s of prime importance if you want your guests to arrive and your pizza to be hot! Stick-on vinyl numbers in a variety of fonts make it easy, starting at about $4 per digit.
 

#9 A Nice Door Mat

A hardworking mat for wiping muddy feet is a must. A thick coir mat can be had at the hardware store for less than $20. Even fancier varieties can be found well under $50.
 

#10 Porch Lights

Fumbling for keys in the dark isn’t fun. Consider doubling up on porch lights with a pair of lanterns, one on each side of the door, for symmetry and twice the illumination. Many mounted lights are available well under $100.
 

#11 A New Mailbox

Mailboxes run the gamut from kitschy roadside novelties masquerading as dogs, fish, or what-have-you to sober black lockboxes mounted alongside the front door. Whichever way you go, make sure yours is standing or hanging straight, with a secure closure, and no dings or dents. The mail carrier will thank you.
 
Looking for more tips or have other real estate questions? Let's talk!
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