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August is National Curb Appeal Month dedicated to helping homeowners focus on ways to add value and design appeal to their home’s exterior.

Whether it’s pride of ownership or fitting in with the neighborhood, the exterior of your home reflects your personality and can create positive impressions. Plus, when it comes time to sell, curb appeal has been proven to make or break that “instant connection” with buyers.

That’s precisely why the importance of curb appeal should never be underrated when you own a home.

August is National Curb Appeal Month dedicated to helping homeowners focus on ways to add value and design appeal to their home’s exterior.

“Real estate agents tell us that potential home buyers make a ‘street decision’ in less than 12 seconds on whether or not to view a home that’s for sale,” Niki Decker, senior manager of product and marketing for Fypon, creator of National Curb Appeal Month.

“That’s a very short time to make a large impression, and it all relies on the curb appeal of the house. Different curb appeal elements, such as well-maintained shrubbery, decorative millwork and trim, colorful plants and an appealing front entryway can have a fast, positive impact on home buyers. Even if your home is not for sale, curb appeal is important in setting a welcoming tone for your family and visitors.”

According to the 2014 Cost vs. Value Study conducted by Remodeling magazine, many products have a high return-on-investment at the time of a home sale.

For example, adding energy-efficient vinyl windows as a mid-range project to a home can have a cost recoup value of 78.7 percent, while the addition of vinyl siding can have 78.2 percent recoup rate.

The study also reports that an easy-care fiberglass entry door can recoup 70.8 percent of the cost invested, while a new roof has a 67.6 percent recoup value.

Further, a recent study from the National Association of Home Builders shows the three most wanted outdoor features consumers desire for their home exteriors are lighting, a patio and a front porch.

With dozens of options for upgrading the different aspects of a home’s exterior, here are a few fast and easy ideas to transform the look of your home this weekend:

• Accent your exterior with a new, colorful welcome mat, decorative flags, planter boxes and baskets of refreshed flowers.

• Clean any exterior lighting fixtures so your house shines during both day and evening hours.

• Restore or replace tired window frames, entry doors and shutters.

• Upgrade the look of your entryway by adding a new kickplate and polishing your door hardware.

• Replace your mailbox and house numbers.

When adding value and appeal to your home, it’s important to always consider the outside as well as the inside. Examine your property from the top down and come up with a plan that creates a unified flow for an overall pleasing impression. Then, to make life easier down the road, choose new products for the exterior of your home that are proven to be both durable and easy to maintain.

Share your weekend project before and after photos with me at