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Curb Appeal Please!
December 21, 2012 in Design Dilemma
We will be looking at selling our house in the coming year. I'd like to help the house look more inviting. I did a few things not shown in the picture. I bought two blue junipers in pot to flank the door. I also bought two rocking chairs w/table and rug for the left part of the porch. I also painted the outdoor lights to a dark gray. I still need to repaint the porch and do something to the door. I'm not sure what else to do. I do want to keep the cost down. Any advice would be appreciated.
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This style of house can be hard to work with. Simple Juilet balconies on the top windows might help make it look a little less stark, possibly with iron railings in between the columns on the first floor. I would avoid anything too ornate though.
December 21, 2012 at 8:08AM     
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Removal of the hedge on the left and augmentation of the "pin cushion" shrubs with something planted in between them would be advised so your foundation is more covered. Greek Revival homes were usually formal in front but often had a casual, more interesting side or back garden - much like a "kitchen" garden with herbs and cut flower plantings. Painting the foundation and steps a darker color so they don't pop out at you would be a priority. Shutters for sure, and balcony if funds allow. You might check with Habitat for Humanity. If they have a store in your area you may find shutters there. For realty photos, I'd remove the screens from the windows. It looks like the transom over the door is glass block. If that is the case, I would replace it with something like a beveled or etched glass.
Crisp Architects 1
Crisp Architects 2
December 21, 2012 at 8:31AM     
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studio | FORMA
I agree with this style being hard to work with. Its a greek revival deprived of about 80% of significant ornamentation to make it complete. However, it has good bones!!

Balance is the key to making this work. Depending on how much work you are willing to invest in. I suggest getting rid of the existing columns. They are way to tall and narrow for the home. Also, I can see a second floor veranda added to the house for a more stately appeal.

Here are a few more examples:
December 21, 2012 at 8:37AM     
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Interiors International, Inc.
I would start with a curving sidewalk. That straight line is very cold. Plantings and lights along this would further create a softness. Plantings by the steps and maybe a nice looking hand rail. You really need plantings and color everywhere. That lawn looks flat and dry. Add some mounds, large stones and other details to draw the eye around instead of straight upward toward the house. Taller plantings along the front possibly a flowering variety would be great. Urns with tall plantings on either side of the door would be a cheap first step.
December 21, 2012 at 8:44AM   
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One of the biggest ways to change the look of your house is to add black shutters:Gabriel Builders

The door belongs on a Victorian, not a Georgian style home. I would replace it. You might think that it is too expensive, but remember it is the first thing that people look at going into your home. You might be able to sell yours. See: Stucco Contractor Toronto and Bryant Exterior

Add plants with some height and color in front of the porch. I would also add plantings at the base of the walkway for depth. See: Howard Roberts.
December 21, 2012 at 8:56AM     
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Here is a mock up. I also added shutters to the new front door, which would logically cover the sidlights. The door could be black or red.
See Historic Renovation in West Chester, PA, Villa Mille Fleurs, St. Martin, French West Indies, and Jennings Home.
December 21, 2012 at 9:07AM     
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studio | FORMA
Great mock up, suggestion "houssaon", it right of way changes the look of the house and without any major renovations.
December 21, 2012 at 9:13AM     
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December 21, 2012 at 9:21AM   
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Creative Lighting
I would look to add some bold lighting choices on either side of the door to really make the front door stand out any time of the day.
December 21, 2012 at 9:25AM     
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Wow! What great ideas! Thank you all so much! Now it's time for my husband and I to crunch numbers. BTW, special thanks to houssaon for the mock up. It really helps!
December 21, 2012 at 9:29AM   
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Joni Koenig Interiors
The shutters are great!...don't forget the inside!
December 21, 2012 at 10:57AM   
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Interiors International, Inc.
There really are some beautiful pics of examples you could do. You definitely need to talk budget with your husband. Many of these ideas are very expensive but if it is in your budget and doesn't make your home the most expensive in the neighborhood go for it. Try to remember though that you do not want to out spend what your area homes are sell for it isn't good to be over built. If you are at the top price point of your neighborhood that is OK. Talk to a real estate agent you trust before you spend a lot on improvements. Unless you know you are going to be there a minimum of 8 years. At that point you are investing in you quality of life and will get a return on your investment based on enjoyment.
December 21, 2012 at 11:09AM   
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Installing shutters, by all means, would make a large difference.
December 21, 2012 at 11:58AM     
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Also some really great pots flanking the door are something you can take with you when you move. Fill them at this time of year with pine branches, twigs, branches with berries or cabbages.
December 21, 2012 at 12:35PM     
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Shutters are a must!
December 21, 2012 at 2:43PM     
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The Mock up is fabulous. If possible you might consider a railing around your porch to give the eye a feeling of depth and distract the eye from the flatness of the house. Makes a big difference. Add a few small trees to the front yard and beef up the front garden. Hydrageas are always a good idea.
December 22, 2012 at 7:35AM     
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Tricia Cooper
I have a similar house, and ohhh is it so hard to make feel inviting. You've been given some great ideas here, as have I. The black shutters really look nice.
December 22, 2012 at 12:21PM   
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Shutters! A relatively small investment and easy install - they will make a world of difference!
December 22, 2012 at 4:42PM     
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I think adding a small pop of interest at the slope by your steps would be interesting in triangle shape you could add a small seasonal display of color to tie into your red door.
December 22, 2012 at 4:45PM     
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Lots of window boxes with lots of color in them. Big pots of same on ground and window shutters.
December 26, 2012 at 9:37AM   
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