The HGTV show Curb Appeal has been airing since 1999, and older seasons still enjoy regular play on their network. The show is aimed at improving a home’s exterior to make it more attractive. In other words, the show focuses on curb appeal. Curb appeal is a term used in the real estate industry to describe making a home more attractive to prospective buyers. It is enhanced through various methods, including painting, landscaping and exterior decorations.
When the show first began, architects drew their planned changes over a picture of the home. As the seasons went on, computer-generated images showed what the house would look like when elements were added or removed. Each episode features a house and a homeowner who wants to freshen up the look of the home. Architects, designers, carpenters and landscapers work together to improve the home’s curb appeal.
The show’s designers tackle homes that range from uninspired to unsightly. One of the most frequently addressed issues is color, or more commonly, the lack thereof. White homes are like kryptonite to these designers and homeowners, so more often than not, bold or unusual color combinations are used to make homes stand out from all the others on their street. The color may be applied to the door or to the entire house. Designers also address problems like scraggly lawns, run-down fences, lifeless trees and plants and broken pavement. Structural and design elements may be added or removed from homes in order to make them look better.
Unlike some design shows that have aired over the years (I’m looking at you, Trading Spaces), Curb Appeal takes into account the homeowner’s preferences. They are actively involved in choosing paint colors and structural elements for the home. The homeowners are also tasked with helping with some of the small projects such as assembling a swing, painting a door and other simple tasks. The homeowners are sent away for short periods and are shown walking back up to the house to see the progress each day.
Of the many home shows that have aired on the HGTV network, Curb Appeal is a personal favorite because it offers practical tips that any homeowner can easily implement. The designs aren’t completely over the top and whether or not the homeowner likes the design is important. I give the Curb Appeal show a three recliner rating. It doesn’t deliver the shock value of extreme home makeover shows, but the practical and attractive changes are an inspiration to anyone trying to improve the appearance of their home.