Ideas for the exterior?

aktillery9February 2, 2013

I am working with a realtor and investor in flipping homes. My job is to help with the design for remodel.

The exterior of this home is quite odd.

I was curious of what you guys would do to help with curb appeal.


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Annie Deighnaugh

Where's the house?

From this angle you can't see a single door or window on the 1st floor.

Will they be willing to replace the garage doors with something more carriage house?

What is that black stuff creeping up the brick between the garage doors?

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 8:28AM
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The home is in San Antonio, Tx.

I am headed out to see it today and will find out more regarding the budget.

I would say the neighborhood is a bit more contemporary.... you know... the 70's 80's type.

I think the black stuff on the brick is probably due to moisture and humidity.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 8:38AM
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Here is a better photo. You can see more of the house in this one. This was six years ago. Now it is a foreclosure. You can see the deterioration.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 8:53AM
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I would start by removing all of the landscaping next to the house, especially that bush near the garage. I would keep the tree in the yard. It definitely needs something on the right side to break up that wall. I would do low growing plants or flowers in that space near the garage or enlarge the sidewalk area and eliminate it completely so that the entrance to the door is more visible.

If they have to replace the roof, I would use a different color. The roof is so overwhelming that the house looks like a giant mushroom.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 9:21AM
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Thanks rrah! That is hilarious! It DOES look like a giant mushroom!

What color would you select for the roof?

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 9:26AM
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The house reminds me of "Cousin It" (Adams family) with the windows/eyes peeking out of the roof/hair. If a facelift is all that's being done (no windows added for example) it is vital that you remove the overgrown landscaping (taller than 2' especially the giant blob obscuring the front door) so one can at least see the front door, and if there are any windows at all on the front near the ground floor.

Then I would plant some larger shrubs on the right side, to hide the strange expanse of solid brick where one would expect a window. Maybe some of the plants can be moved...

Get the exterior powerwashed, it looks dirty and that will make a difference.

Paint the front door a nice red color to draw the eye, since the door is so hidden. Place some nice pots or urns with colorful flowers near the door, and some more color in the flower beds to compensate for the monochromatic house.

Perhaps a nice bench or swing seat out front on the right side of the house - under the tree or with a canopy for shade? Suggestive of relaxing, idyllic days.

On a positive note the tree has grown nicely in 6 years!

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 12:06PM
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This might be super cost-prohibitive but since the roof is so prominent I might consider doing a red tile roof. I'm just north of SA and tile roofs are very popular. And really, with the chimney, you might even be able to pull off a hacienda style.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 12:19PM
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Huh. I kind of like the roof. It looks like a thatched roof and that you could make it look like a cozy cottage to me. :)

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 12:37PM
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cyn427 (zone 7)

I agree with boop. Once you remove the overgrown shrubbery, look at it with an eye toward giving it an English cottage feel with a cottage garden. If you could paint the trim of those odd windows or even give them a little more heft, it might help camouflage them somewhat. Cousin Itt indeed! Funny.

You could expand the garden across the front and add a trellis with climbing roses across that windowless section as a backdrop and to disguise (at least make less obvious)the fact that there are no windows there.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 12:53PM
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Agree with much above. A good power washing, get rid of the overgrown shrubs, etc.

I think I like the roof. I'm curious what lurks behind the shrub hiding the chimney. Trellises to break up the large expanse of brick (like someone else suggested).

That will give it a good start at least.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 1:09PM
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I don't think the house will ever look right with the garage peak (looks like an add on) and the goth looking conehead caps on the chimney! I think I'd tone down the paint on the garage doors (not sure the windows contribute anything other than drawing attention) and the upper windows so they don't pop so much. A roof color similar to but darker than the stone to subdue it. Of course, remove all the crowded shrubbery at the entrance. Wonder what it's hiding.

I wonder if this was the original architecture or if a second floor was added. Do the other homes in the neighborhood look like this? It doesn't seem to have been designed with aesthetics in mind.

This post was edited by snookums2 on Sat, Feb 2, 13 at 13:32

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 1:26PM
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I kind of like the lines of the house. Hard to tell from the photo how well the brick works with the roof color (phone cameras are too fuzzy).

I don't think it needs to be tarted up with paint. Here it is with nicer windows, garage doors, trimmed hedges & a walkway light amidst the petunias:

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 1:56PM
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Here is my idea for a Hacienda:

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 3:42PM
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I like the warm colors! Could someone lop off those ears on the chimney, lol? Either that or add a nose. I'd like to see what it would look like without the garage peak too, just out of curiousity. I'm sure reconstruction is not in the budget!

Have to consider the neighborhood too when drastically changing the style.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 3:46PM
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If this is a flip I am assuming no major work like a new roof would be worthwhile.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 4:36PM
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On the other hand, if you get the roof right, it could make a huge difference with the sales price. If it's already been replaced, then that's another issue.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 5:05PM
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Lori A. Sawaya

Cottage - yep, can see that.

Hacienda - love that idea too.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 5:36PM
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Kelly and and AMW. Thanks for taking the time to photoshop!

Great ideas you guys! Also, some good laughs!

Thanks everyone!

    Bookmark   February 3, 2013 at 11:35AM
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I would also take out some of the lawn, and make a wide planting bed along the outside of the sidewalk, across the whole front of house, and one around the tree, out to the drip line. I'd mulch them heavily, plant it with a ground cover that can spread to fill it, and plant some evergreen shrubbery that's good in your zone across the front. Whoever buys the house can plant whatever they like in the beds.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2013 at 3:11PM
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Curious. does the rest of the neighborhood share the same architecture?

    Bookmark   February 3, 2013 at 3:28PM
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I think the house would be dramatically improved by adding windows on the right. I could even see a high but wide awning type window with a window box underneath. That would work well with the english cottage style if you go in that direction.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2013 at 4:05PM
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To me, the dormers are the biggest issue. They are too narrow and tall. The roofs sit on them like cheap toupees. If you cannot rework them entirely, could you at least extend the rooflines down a bit to match the overhang on the rest of the house? That would make them more in proportion.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2013 at 7:10PM
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Oh thank goodness this isn't your home, I was trying to think of how one could possibly comment politely. Pretty darn ugly. I think the proportions of the major elements are all out of whack; no cheap fix here. The roof is wrong, the chimney is wrong, the dormes are wrong and the front elevation fenstration is wrong. The tree might be the most valuable thing on the lot. : )

I do like what awm did to break up the garage mass by making the doors darker, and I agree the cheapest direction is probably to go cottage-y.

Can't wait to see what you do.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2013 at 9:36PM
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