Your Tudor tired? That ranch need resuscitating? We asked EnviroMagic.com designer and feng shui consultant Daniel Owens — you may have seen him work his makeover magic on HGTV’s Curb Appeal — to share eight essential steps for ramping up the outside of any residence.By Rob Brinkley
1) Start with the front entry and work your way out. Changing a front door can be an excellent start. Think of it as the mouth of chi (that’s short for energy), and you have something new to say. A clean-lined door will welcome your guests and make you happy every time you walk in.
2) Keep the front uncluttered. A Zen bench or a couple of cool pots with some succulents (they don’t need much water, which is perfect if you travel often) will do the trick.
3) Stand back and consider the bigger picture. What was the original message your house was trying to say? Look for [existing] architectural elements that can be enhanced with color or moldings to help it pop from the street.
4) Natural material is the direction of design today. If you need new windows, consider clear anodized aluminum. New windows are energy-efficient and can bring your pad into this century. Stone overlays on the porch or around the front (there’s now faux stuff that looks authentic) take the whole package up several notches.
5) What about that driveway? There are great-looking paver products now available that can transform the front of a driveway-dominated home. Use various sizes together to give it a natural look.
6) Think accents. No, not Penélope Cruz: We’re talking embellishments that say you care about all the details — doorbells, light fixtures, mailbox. Pick a simple finish, like brushed nickel or bronze.
7) What really sets your place apart? The fence. Horizontal lines, baby. This was popular back when you were a babe, so consider it a hip alternative — a clean line that sets your home apart from the neighbors’.
8) Order a welcome mat!