Extreme Curb Appeal, Part 1: Changing the Exterior of Your Home

When you talk about curb appeal and changing the exterior of your home, usually simple things like landscaping, fencing, and walkways come to mind. However, have you ever thought about what it would take to dramatically change the exterior facade of your home? Well, I have, and I’d like to share a series of posts on what it would take to do just that.
After reading the Forbes list of the 10 must-haves for new homes, I began to think about how I could incorporate some of those attributes into my own home. Even though my house is 112 years old, that doesn’t mean it can’t hold a flame to the newer, cookie-cutter homes, and I’d like to make sure it’s a real competitor when we go to sell it.
The one “must have” that kept popping up in the back of my head was the preference for some exterior materials over some others. Out were vinyl and stucco siding (my house has vinyl) and in are brick and stone. And I kept wondering, how on earth can I, just a lowly homeowner and renovator, make that work in my favor?

When we first looked at our house, I wasn’t a fan of the exterior. I remember telling my then-fiancee that I thought the house looked like a barn. I didn’t really like the curb side of the architecture, nor did was I in love with the forest green tone of the (relatively new) siding. However, the interior had the most potential, and after looking at so many other houses in our price range, I got over my qualms and we made an offer.
Two and a half years later, I still think it looks like a barn, and I’m no more fond of the siding, especially since some of it was irreparably damaged in a freak windstorm. But where to go from here? I’ve thought about painting the vinyl, but that’s not going to change much other than the color.
Looking around at other homes I admire in my area, I realized something. I love brick exteriors, specifically painted brick in a Victorian sort of style. But can a vinyl-sided house be made into a brick one? How much would that cost? What all would need to be considered?
Seeing that article telling me indeed, brick is more desirable than vinyl siding, it sealed the deal for me. I was going to see what it would take to (eventually) transform my nearly-historic property into something I’m more excited to come home to everyday.
Follow along in this series with me as I learn my options, research the ease and expense of such an undertaking, and consider various other things I’m sure I don’t even know about in efforts of making my house less of a green barn and more of a home I’m proud of.

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