DIY Outdoor Projects that Add Value to Your Home

The Family Handyman

Elizabeth Flaherty8/23/2017

 

Spruce Up for Curb Appeal

Curb appeal refers to how good your house looks at first glance, when people are driving or walking by. This first impression is typically a do-or-die moment if you’re trying to sell your home: Either buyers are encouraged to explore further or they’re disappointed and are already mentally moving on.

Fortunately, you can enhance curb appeal easily. Simply trimming the shrubs, plants and grass around your entryway can make a big difference. Adding a new porch is even better. Remember to clean out any dirty gutters and replace any missing shingles as well, because people will also notice your roof when walking up to the house. For added flair, think about painting your entry door a bold, inviting color (reds are particularly popular).

Create a Backyard Escape

 

If you have a backyard, use it to add value to your home by creating a welcoming, private space. A simple pergola or gazebo on a flat section of your yard can prove very impressive. Arrange landscaping around the new area so that it is open, easy to get to (even when the ground is wet), and has enough room for friends as well as some storage. For a more advanced version of this project in warmer climates, consider building a sunroom.

 

Give Your Home a New Coat of Paint

Exterior painting can be a lengthy project, but it is very affordable and makes a big impact on curb appeal. Consult your homeowners association rules, if you belong to one, and spend some time identifying siding and trim colors that complement your landscaping and other homes in your neighborhood. A fresh coat of paint will have your house looking years newer and more attractive to homebuyers. Preparation and proper technique are key here, so it’s important to stay patient. If you find any damaged siding, this is the perfect time to replace it as well.

 

Add a Shed for Storage and Organization

 

While a gazebo is meant for entertainment, a new shed is designed for storage. Whether it’s cleaning out the garage or making room for a new hobby, a shed can add a surprising amount of value to your home. Shed projects also span a variety of budgets and styles, so there’s probably something out there that’s just right for you. Remember, whenever you add more usable space, you add value to your house. Check our guidelines for ARB height and style.

 

Build a Deck or Patio

If you are looking for a larger outdoor project to do this spring, then consider adding a full deck or patio to your house. A well-constructed deck or patio not only looks great, it also adds more usable outdoor space for grilling, playing and entertaining. All things that homebuyers appreciate when first touring a house.

The key is to plan carefully and use high-quality materials. For a deck, pressure-treated wood is a great option. For particularly harsh climates, you may want to consider longer-lasting fiber cement or other materials designed to withstand intense sun exposure or freezing temperatures. A full deck project can cost as much $10,000, but it also adds plenty of value to your home. Patio projects tend to cost a little less, but take just as much work when measuring and properly setting pavers.