Home Decor

DIY Landscaping to Boost Rental Property Curb Appeal


If you want your home’s exterior to leave a lasting impression on anyone who drives by, then it’s time to work on your curb appeal! Curb appeal is the way your house and front lawn look when viewed from the street; it is what creates a person’s first impression of a property. Maybe you’d just like your home to look it is absolutely best, or perhaps you’d like to pique the interest of prospective tenants or buyers. Either way, it’s a great idea to put some effort into boosting your curb appeal! And luckily, it’s not too hard to enhance your home’s exterior. There are plenty of DIY landscaping projects you can complete with only a few hundred dollars and a few hours of your time by using online software like designor buddy.

Simple DIY Landscaping Projects 

Overall, these projects require little investment, time, and maintenance–and they’re sure to boost your curb appeal by adding personality and visual interest to your home’s exterior. When choosing between landscaping projects, there are a couple of things you should keep in mind. First, you’ll want to look into the overall price and time it will take to complete the project. But you’ll also want to consider the maintenance that will be required long-term and whether you or your potential tenants will be willing to take on that responsibility.

  1. Maintain lawn and landscaping
  2. Set up landscape lighting
  3. Choose some flower boxes
  4. Add potted plants
  5. Create a wooden walkway
  6. Upgrade your mulch
  7. Plant a garden around your mailbox
  8. Build a simple fountain

1. Maintain Lawn and Landscaping

Before you add anything more to your lawn and landscaping, make sure that you can maintain what you already have! Remove any existing weeds using a trimmer, mow the lawn regularly, plant grass seed in any sparse patches, and water and fertilize the grass as needed, . You’ll also need to trim the bushes and take care of any plants on the property before moving on to additional landscaping projects.

2. Set Up Landscape Lighting

Outdoor lighting can completely transform the look of a house! You can choose to set up lights along a pathway to make it easier for visitors to navigate, around a patio to illuminate a seating area, or in another creative arrangement. One key to keep in mind is that the pools of light from your individual landscape lights should not overlap. In order to make the project simpler and avoid doing electrical work, choose solar lamps that are powered by the sun!

One common problem with landscape lighting is the “runway effect.” This happens when lights are positioned too close together and directly across from each other, reminiscent of an airplane runway. To avoid this effect, stagger the lights and keep plenty of space between them. And remember, less is more when it comes to landscape lighting!

3. Choose Some Flower Boxes

If you have about $100 and an hour of time to spare, window boxes filled with flowers are a great option! Putting brightly-colored flowers at eye level adds visual interest and curb appeal, and flower boxes don’t require too much maintenance. Whether you choose to use metal, wood, or plastic window boxes, ensure that they have drainage holes, and leave a couple inches of space in between your house and the window box for proper ventilation.

Zinnias, geraniums, petunias, and begonias are all good choices for your flower boxes; you may want to fill in some of the empty space with ivy, inch plant, or heather. If you’d like, you can choose to plant herbs in your window box rather than flowers. Sage, thyme, and mint are all fun selections that are sure to come in handy when you’re cooking dinner!

4. Add Potted Plants

Rather than planting them in the ground, it may be ideal to opt for potted plants so that you can enjoy them year-round! And potted plants can be placed almost anywhere, making them easy to add to your existing landscaping setup. Look for pots with drainage holes built in, or you can drill them in yourself as long as the pots you’ve chosen aren’t made of clay. Select plants that can easily survive in your local climate, and do your research to ensure that you know how to care for them. Generally, your plants will need sunlight on a daily basis, and they should be watered any time the top inch of the soil feels dry.

5. Create a Wooden Walkway

While stepping stones are an undeniably nice addition to your landscaping design, wooden walkways are much easier, quicker, and cheaper to DIY–and they still add plenty of curb appeal, as well as a nice path to walk on! With a wooden walkway, you can replace individual planks if necessary without needing to redo the entire project, making this type of walkway very low-maintenance. You can even save money by using any scrap wood you have lying around; pallet wood works perfectly for this purpose.

6. Upgrade Your Mulch

Switching up your mulch is an inexpensive way to refresh the appearance of your house’s exterior. Try using it as a contrasting accent that makes the color of your house pop or select a complementary color that will mesh well with any brick or siding you have. Dark mulch also provides plenty of contrast with bright flowers, creating an eye-catching display.

Rather than laying new mulch on top of existing mulch, remember to remove a good amount of the old mulch, since it’s likely built up over time. It’s recommended to build the mulch up to about three inches deep and be sure to refresh it twice a year.

7. Plant a Garden Around Your Mailbox

Another way to enhance your landscape is to plant a garden around your mailbox. You can use mulch or pebbles and stones around the planting bed area. As far as plants go, there are plenty of options–but steer clear of flowers that attract lots of bees, so that your local postal worker doesn’t have to risk a bee sting every day when they deliver your mail. Annuals, perennials, tropicals, and shrubbery are all good candidates for your mailbox garden.

8. Build a Simple Fountain

Water features are always sure to add curb appeal, and they truly take your landscaping to another level. Building a fountain might sound like a lot of effort, but it’s simpler than you might think! A fountain made from tiered flowerpots is one way to go, but you could also use a galvanized bucket or wooden barrels if you prefer! You can even opt for a solar pump or solar bird bath rather than setting up a more advanced plumbing system.

Should You Hire a Property Manager to Help?

As a landlord, you many be wondering if you should hire a property manager to help with these projects. Managing your own property requires a lot of time and knowledge to do things correctly. A northern Virginia property management company can help with managing projects to improve the value of your rental property as well as managing the day to day tasks such a tenant relations and rent collection. Additionally, they can recommend ways to increase the value of your investment property and maximize ROI.

Nate Berkus
Nate Berkus, a distinguished interior designer with a Bachelor’s in Design and Environmental Analysis, has been transforming spaces with his unique aesthetics for over two decades. His professional journey includes working with top design firms before venturing into freelance design consulting. His expertise was cultivated through years of working on high-end residential and commercial projects. He joined our editorial team and offers readers a blend of contemporary style and practical decorating solutions. He is also an ardent traveler, drawing inspiration from different cultures to enrich his design philosophy.

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