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Add oomph to the stoop: Seven easy ways to boost your home’s curb appeal

After painting her shutters black, Caren Travis wanted a contrasting color for the front door to add a pop of color. She matched Burning Bush red to the brick of the home’s exterior. Photo by Susan Pierce .

Whether you are updating your home to sell or just vying for neighborhood Yard of the Month, spring is the traditional season to spruce up your yard and front entrance.

Boosting curb appeal is especially important to anyone planning to put their home on the market.

“When a buyer is looking for a home, they first look at listings online and in the newspaper. Then they drive by to see the house and, if what they see in person doesn’t match what they saw on paper, they’ll keep going,” says Vicki Trapp, a Realtor with Crye-Leike and president of the Greater Chattanooga Association of Realtors.

“The way the house looks on the outside determines whether they will go inside,” she explains. “It’s easy to keep the grass cut, trim the shrubs, sweep the sidewalk. If you have the funds, put down mulch.”

When Caren and Tony Travis of Ringgold, Ga., started a spring spruce-up, their front yard and porch were their first projects. They spread 35 bags of mulch, pressure-washed the house, took down the front shutters and painted them black, then spraypainted outdoor lighting fixtures black to match. Next, she turned her eyes to the front door — its neutral white shade had to go.

“I wanted a pop of color to contrast the black and white. Red gave it the ‘wow’ factor,” says Caren. Plus, black, white and red are Georgia Bulldog colors, the fan jokingly adds.

Taking one of the home’s bricks to the hardware store, she matched it to paint cards wbefore picking the door’s new color, Burning Bush red.

“It took 11 coats of paint to get the right shade,” she says of the glossy, deep-red door.

Whether your house is blessed with a big wraparound veranda or a pint-sized porch, you can add some oomph to the front stoop with these seven easy ideas suggested by designers at, an online collection of interior design and decorating ideas



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Barry Evans was very knowledgeable and helpful during our purchase process.  There wasn’t a lot on the market and he helped us see things “outside of our box” and we ended up falling in love with a house we would have initially not given a second thought to.
Kelly and Candace