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Timeless kerb appeal, without spending a fortune

From the Resene decorating blog

Here are five key areas of the property to consider for maximum kerb impact, for minimum outlay.

A colourful front door

Go for a colourful front door, in Resene Clockwork Orange. The weatherboards are in Resene Triple Ash and the trims are Resene Thorndon Cream.

Much is made of the importance of street appeal when it comes to selling or renting your house, because as we all know, first impressions matter. Having an investment property that looks smart and well maintained from the first glance is far more likely to draw reliable tenants who will look after it, or potential buyers who will make a strong offer.

You might be surprised at the difference you can make to your property exterior without investing lots of time or money. Here are five key areas of the property to consider for maximum kerb impact, for minimum outlay.

House exterior

The obvious place to start working your kerbside appeal is the exterior of the building itself. Keeping the exterior paintwork up to date and well maintained will make the property look smart and appealing, and of course any maintenance costs are tax deductible. There are also some quick and easy ways to refresh the look of your house.

Firstly, give it a proper wash. This will remove any water-staining, cobwebs, mould and moss from the exterior and can instantly take years off its appearance. Once your house is clean, give it a close-up inspection for any areas of peeling paint, split weatherboards or discolouring that can be easily touched up.

Also take a look at your window frames and lintels. Giving these areas fresh coats of paint can really brighten up the house, for far less expense and effort than completely repainting the exterior. Think about a shade that will really make a statement of your main exterior colour choice, whether it’s a bold complementary colour or a crisp contrasting neutral. The right colour choice around your windows will also make them look larger.

If you do want to re-paint the whole exterior the world is your oyster when it comes to colour choices. Warm grey-stone colours such as Resene Tea or Resene Napa remain hugely popular on the exterior of homes, as do blue-grey shades like Resene Hermitage, because they are neutrals but with depth and interest. These colours work well surrounded by leafy foliage, and look great with bright white trim, but they can also take the addition of some bold contrasting colours from dark forest tones to fuchsia pinks.

Going dark is another trend that’s back for house exteriors as it will make most buildings look contemporary and dramatic but make sure you use a Resene CoolColour when you opt for dark shades as it reflects more of the sun’s heat so helps minimise damage to the paint and the cladding underneath.

Other areas to think about painting in contrast or highlight colours are soffits, drainpipes and guttering, and shingled areas around bay or dormer windows.

Once you have a colour scheme you’re happy with on your house, any other colour or design feature you add to the rest of the exterior section is about adding complementary or contrasting features.

Front doors and porches

A brightly coloured front door is an easy way to make your home look bold and interesting from the street. Think bold red, greens, oranges or yellows or go bold and dark, with black, or dark charcoal greens. Try Resene Pohutukawa, Resene Away We Go, Resene Turbo or Resene Porter. Use gloss Resene Enamacryl to bring out the colour.

A partially enclosed front porch

An appealing partially enclosed front porch

A partially enclosed front porch with storage and set-down space will appeal to potential tenants. This tonal scheme uses blues instead of neutrals, with weatherboards painted in Resene Half Periglacial Blue, accented with a Resene Blue Night door and Resene Alabaster trims. The bench seat is painted in Resene Coast, the storage box by the door is in Resene Poured Milk, and the deck is finished in Resene Woodsman Driftwood stain. Styled by Emily Somerville-Ryan; image by Bryce Carleton.

You can treat a partially enclosed front porch or a veranda much the same way as an interior room, with good colour and useful accessories. Add a new welcome mat, a light fitting or built-in storage for shoes and coats.

The porch is the perfect transition space, and with a bit of thought it can tie the exterior of your home with the interior, and make your home seem exciting and inviting from the street.


A sharply painted and well-maintained boundary fence adds everything to the kerb appeal of your home. It will also appeal to tenants for the security, privacy and safety it provides.

Fences provide security and safety

Fences appeal to tenants for providing security and safety. This side fence is finished in Resene Furniture and Decking Oil.

Most boundary walls and fences need to be functional first. The trick is balancing effective security or animal control, with being inviting to tenants and pleasing to the eye. If you’re working with brick, concrete or stone, drape it with plants that will grow over both sides. Concrete and some brick can be painted in darker neutral, shadow colours that will recede into the plants to become almost invisible. For a breezy contrast pale sky blues create a lovely contrasting backdrop to plants.

If you’re dealing with steel or wood fences, colour is the simplest easiest way to smarten them up. Pick colours which will complement your home exterior from the street view. But you can also be a little creative and give your neighbours something pleasant to look at with a stencilled design or a splash of dramatic colour. Dark colours such as Resene Pitch Black wood stain are always popular.

And, of course, the key thing once you have your fence or wall spruced up, is to keep it maintained, free of loose boards, mildew, moss and peeling paint.

Paths and landscaping

Think about how people get from the street to your front door. Make sure there is at least one clear pathway and think about how it may be improved with the addition of colour or lighting. You can tie paving stones back to the colours you’ve chosen for your porch or house or paint them to use as the key colour focal point.

Brightly coloured pots

Brightly coloured pots create an eye-catching display and give tenants space to personalise the garden or deck, and plant herbs, flowers and veges. These are in (from left) Resene Poppy, Resene Pink Ribbon, Resene Party Zone, Resene Lazy River, Resene Daredevil and Resene Poppy. Styled by Claudia Kozub; image by Wendy Fenwick.

Of course, the key to keeping your garden, and by extension your whole property looking smart is keeping it well-maintained, clean and tidy; lawns mowed, mildew water blasted, whether you hire someone to take care of it, or make it the responsibility of your tenants.

Pots and planters

Adding pots and planters to your section is the quickest, easiest way to add interest and street-appeal to your front garden. Pots are also one of the easiest ways to let tenants add their personality to their new home.

Use different shapes and size pots to add different heights and levels to the planting. Paint them in bright bold Resene colours that pick up the contrasts in your house colour scheme and the plants themselves.

If you have a large group of pots together, make sure they are a mix of sizes, shapes and colours to add an extra dimension for the eye.

Top tip:  Light it up Clever use of lighting, from bold fittings to fairy lights, can create a beautiful looking entrance, while also being practical. A well-lit entrance, for example, is an important security feature for both tenants and potential buyers.

Resene Poured Milk

Resene Lazy River

Resene Porter

Resene Party Zone

Resene Away We Go

Resene Pink Ribbon

November 16, 2018

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