5 Mistakes That Damage Your Home’s Curb Appeal

Would you be tempted to view the inside of a house if the outside were devoid of “curb appeal”? Yeah, probably not. Even in today’s hot real estate market where buyers are willing to overpay to get in the market, curb appeal matters. The exterior of your house is an extension of you and your values. It should be an inviting presence to your home.

Let’s face it, first impressions are key. Here are some tips on how to avoid making your home memorable for the wrong reasons.

Shabby Shingles

curb appeal mistakes

Look up. Look way up at your roof. Worn or missing shingles are a huge sign of a home’s neglect. If your shingles are in bad repair, there may be roof damage that can lead to leaks and all kinds of issues. It’s an expensive fix, but it’s the first line of defense to protect your investment.

Keep your roof colour choice simple and stick with neutrals. Black is a classic that’s always in style. Some of my favourites are driftwood, weathered wood and various versions of black, because they go with almost every house exterior.

A poor choice in colour

curb appeal mistakes


As a homeowner, you want your house to stand out…but for the right reasons. To add balance and interest to your house, create contrast. Instead of standing out with bright colours, be bold with darker colours. Darker colours are seen as heavier which also help ground the structure visually.

If you prefer a neutral colour for your home, save the bold look for your front door. My favourite exterior paint colour is Benjamin Moore’s Willow CC-542. It’s a black-brown with traces of grey. Willow is not quite black, more like a smoky brown. What’s great about this paint colour is that it looks rich, but with a light touch.

Outdated light fixtures

curb appeal mistakes


It’s easy to neglect something that you walk past everyday. A good tip to see how your house measures up with the rest is by driving around your neighborhood or getting a fresh set of eyes to see what needs improvement.

Updated exterior light fixtures are a great way to improve curb appeal. While the lighting may only be appreciated at night, the fixtures themselves can add tremendous style to a plain exterior. Todays’ LED lightbulbs last a long time but make sure you don’t get blinding white lights. Try to find bulbs that mimic the incandescent soft, warm light of candles. Don’t forget to properly light the address number of your house. You want people to find you, right?

Lazy landscaping

curb appeal mistakes

(Moving Mountains Design – Los Angeles Real Estate Staging)

There are some houses that appear vacant because of the jungle of long weeds and plants that cover the front yard. Your lawn and garden are demanding, not something you can look after only once a month or when you feel like it. It’s a task that you must commit to on a regular basis, especially during growing season. Failure to properly care for your yard can lead to bylaw violations and disgruntled neighbours.

If you’re like me and don’t have the time to care for a large garden, consider adding planters. Flowers and foliage add colour, texture and a lovely greeting to a beautiful home. Nothing says, “welcome,” like a plush green lawn and beautiful florals.

Garage with too much drama

curb appeal mistakes

No need to add any more drama when your front door is center stage! Your garage door should blend in and create balance, especially if positioned at the front of your house.

If you have modern garage doors that are more intricate in design, you have even less of a need to paint it a colour that makes it stand out. Benjamin Moore’s Kingsport Gray is a timeless colour that can be used in both traditional and contemporary spaces.

You only get one chance to make a great first impression, so why not use these tips to make your curb appeal as great as the interior of your home.