Kip Tips


10 Affordable Ways to Improve Your Home's Curb Appeal

Cameron Huddleston

Find out what you can do to make your yard look better for free, for $100 or for $500.



Not only is April Financial Literacy Month, but also it is National Garden Month. You're probably wondering why I am mentioning this in a personal finance column. Because it takes money to buy plants and beautify your yard.

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Investing in the landscaping around your home can pay off if you're trying to sell your home. Even if you're not planning on moving any time soon, it never hurts to improve your property's curb appeal. And it doesn't have to cost a lot -- or anything at all -- to do so. Here are ten suggestions that landscape professionals have shared with me in the past:

For free, you can ...

Clean up existing plant beds by removing weeds and overgrown plants.

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Prune shrubs -- but not into an unnatural ball or square shape.

Trim tree branches that hang too low and create hazards.

For $100, you can ...

Create a welcoming entrance with one or two big pots filled with colorful plants.

Make a significant impact on your landscape with a few 5-gallon trees for about $35 each, if you plan to stay in your home for at least five years.

Buy seeds, such as a mix of wildflowers, and cover much more ground than $100 worth of plants.

For $500, you can ...

Invest in a couple of great architectural pots that make a statement at your entrance. Add rounded boxwoods or a seasonal planting of ornamental grasses and colorful annuals.

Add a bench or garden ornament, such as a trellis or birdbath, to a key spot or a nice mailbox and with some plantings at the base.

Spruce up your foundation plantings with a border of long-blooming perennials.

Pay someone to professionally prune or selectively remove (and replace) overgrown bushes.

If your budget is a little bigger, see more ideas in Cheap Ways to Improve Your Curb Appeal.

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