Do you believe in love at first sight? If not, the results from a few scientific studies have presented some pretty convincing evidence that it’s real. According to Dr. Stephanie Ortigue of Syracuse University, feelings of love can be experienced in as little as 0.2 seconds after establishing visual contact. Normally, we associate the phrase with people, but the same can be true for things, especially homes. Love and the nesting instinct go hand in hand, which is why so many people use the phrase “love at first sight” to describe their decision to purchase their first home. Whether you plan to sell it, or enjoy it for years to come, there are some things you can do to improve the first sight of your home.
The foundation of most homes is an ugly slab of grey concrete– and foundations are even more visible from the level of a real estate agent’s car seat. Faux stone panels can not only cover that unsightly grey concrete, but transform it into an attractive trim or contrasting accent for your home. They aren’t just used for foundations, though. In fact, used as siding, they can transform the appearance of the entire house. Just as dental veneers can hide minor defects and brighten a smile, there have been some exciting new developments in veneers for homes.
They come in a variety of materials, colors, and textures, and can achieve the same visual effect as natural stone for a fraction of the cost. Lightweight and easy to install, they’re also low-maintenance and can be used in all climates. You can even send away for free samples to compare color, texture and durability. That’s a great way to test which type might be the best match for the color and materials of your home. It’s also a good alternative to more frequent, and costly, painting.
The author of The New York Times 1,000 Gardening Questions & Answers, Leslie Land, advises homeowners to “…design for curb appeal based on the size and shape of your house and how it relates to the street.” For example, if your house is extremely large, planting beautiful small flowers may not produce the desired effect. Larger structures require larger plants or groupings of plants to draw attention away from themselves and create visual balance.
The color scheme for choosing plants and flowers should take the color of the house itself into consideration. Another consideration when choosing plants is the level of maintenance they require. While you, and potential home buyers, may appreciate the beauty of high-maintenance landscaping, very few people have the time or the inclination to spend tending it. There are a wide variety of gorgeous, yet low-maintenance plants, trees, shrubs and flowers that can liven up your yard without exhausting your body or your budget.
Back in 1910, shortly after the invention of the automobile, garages were little more than detached sheds located in the back of the house. The idea of an attached garage that would allow people to escape the weather after parking became popular in the 1930’s. By 1945, they had become standard in the architectural blueprints for new homes. As the size of cars increased, so did the size of garages.
Today, the garage is one of the most prominent features in the front of many homes, especially those built after the 1970’s, when two-car households became more common. A new garage door is one of the best ways to improve your home’s curb appeal. Once strictly utilitarian, they now come in a variety of materials, styles and colors. Because they are so highly visible from the street, many people are choosing to match their garage doors with their front door, and they love the results.
Even if you don’t believe in love at first sight, there’s no denying the power of first impressions. There can be a huge difference between the before and the after photos when you take the time to increase the curb appeal of your home. The results might even inspire your neighbors to do the same, and the whole neighborhood will enjoy an increase in soul-restoring beauty. That’s the best kind of increase in property value.