Spruce up your home for less

Whether you’re planning to sell your home or just improve its street appeal, a few simple tasks can have it looking a million dollars in no time, without spending a fortune.

Kerb appeal
First appearances are important and brightening up the entrance to your home will also make you feel better about yourself. Paint your door a fresh, contrasting colour to the rest of the house and, if you can afford it, replace the hardware. Update your letter box and draw attention to your spruced up home with a statement pot and plant.

Light up
Outdoor lighting not only gives you an added piece of mind when it comes to safety, but a few well placed solar lights can also give your garden or pathway a welcoming feel. You can even get solar-powered sensor lights to put on your garage or entrance way. If your house doesn’t get a lot of sun, you might want to consider battery-powered options but, obviously, the running costs are much higher.

Work those green fingers
If your plants are looking a bit worse for wear, especially if the hot Australian summer is taking its toll, think about strategically replacing a few plants with natives, succulents or some hardy perennials. Even trimming back those dead leaves or overgrown branches can give your garden a lift. Don’t forget to catch the grey water so that you can keep your garden watered during the unforgiving summer months.

Reap and sow
Summer is not the ideal time to reseed your lawn or even returf those barren areas, but you can start to plan for some grass maintenance for autumn. If your lawn isn’t looking its sharpest, then keep it short. But remember that it’s smartest to mow in the evenings when it’s a bit cooler and the full sun isn’t beating down on newly exposed grass.

Release the pressure
Pathways, fences, decks, drives and fascia can get a little tired, but sometimes all they need are a good clean. A good blast with a pressure washer soon shifts the build-up of grime and is great for letting out all that pent-up frustration! If you don’t own a pressure washer, borrow one from a friend or rent one from your local hardware store.

Get oiling
Now that you’ve cleaned up your wooden fence and deck, consider giving it a quick coat of oil. Wood dries out really quickly, making it susceptible to cracking and bending if not looked after properly. Regular oiling will not only make your wooden areas look better, but will preserve them, meaning that you won’t have to fork out for a replacement anytime soon

Start composting
If you haven’t done so already, build yourself a compost bin and turn your waste into much-needed plant food. There’s no point spending money on expensive shop-bought versions of fertiliser and feed when you can make your own for next to nothing.

Written by Debbie McTaggart

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