Im­prove your home’s kerb ap­peal

If you want to im­prove peo­ple’s first im­pres­sion of your home, giv­ing the front a makeover is a must, whether you’re sell­ing or stay­ing put

Rutherglen Reformer - - Hose & Home -

This time of year is ideal for bright­en­ing up your front gar­den with win­dow boxes, hang­ing bas­kets and tubs planted with colour­ful bed­ding plants.

If you have left­over deck­ing boards, you could make troughs and planters out of them.

A front gar­den can add con­sid­er­able value to your home if it’s made into off-street park­ing, es­pe­cially in ex­pen­sive ur­ban ar­eas.

Plan­ning per­mis­sion is some­times re­quired for this (and to have a dropped kerb) and there may be plan­ning re­stric­tions on things like its size and the ma­te­ri­als used – gravel or per­me­able paving, for ex­am­ple (see plan­ning­por­tal.­mon­pro­jects/45/paving-your-front­gar­den ).

“Per­me­able paving is be­com­ing more pop­u­lar, but tra­di­tional prod­ucts are still com­monly used due to cost,” says Mar­tyn Fowkes from builder’s merchant Travis Perkins.

“Man­ag­ing wa­ter drainage is a ne­ces­sity and us­ing per­me­able block paving helps, while al­ter­na­tive prod­ucts that in­cor­po­rate ad­di­tional lin­ear drainage and soak­aways are very pop­u­lar.”

Tatty wood­work at the front of your home looks aw­ful, so spruce up wooden win­dows and doors with ex­te­rior wood filler and paint – Ron­seal High Per­for­mance Wood Filler is ex­cel­lent, es­pe­cially for rot­ten wood.

You can also, of course, paint metal win­dows and even UPVC ones. Chang­ing the win­dows can make a mas­sive dif­fer­ence to the frontage, but it’s not cheap. And be care­ful not to de­crease the value of your home – re­plac­ing orig­i­nal wooden sash win­dows with case­ment UPVC win­dows will de­value a prop­erty in some ar­eas, for ex­am­ple.

One of the eas­i­est ways to up­date the look of your front door is to change the door fur­ni­ture – chrome or brushed stain­less steel is more fash­ion­able than brass and gives a smart, con­tem­po­rary look suited to both pe­riod and modern doors.

Get metal door num­bers to match, or con­sider frost­ed­film num­bers if you have a glazed or par­tially-glazed door or porch. They can be fid­dly to fit, but look great.

Paint­ing the front door a dif­fer­ent colour can also make a big dif­fer­ence.

Ideally, the colour should go with the build­ing’s brick­work, paint­work or other ex­te­rior fin­ish, and suit its age and style of ar­chi­tec­ture. While some clas­sic colours are al­ways pop­u­lar for front doors, in­clud­ing red, black and dark blue, there are more fash­ion­able ones – greys and duck-egg blues and greens have be­come pop­u­lar in re­cent years.

If there’s a colour you like but you can’t find it in an ex­te­rior wood paint, try the Valspar paint-mix­ing desk at your lo­cal B&Q. There are about 2,000 Valspar colours to choose from, or you can have an item you love scanned in store and a paint cre­ated to match (see

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