Looking for suggestions to modernize the exterior of my house

I am looking to do some budget-friendly updates to the house. The goal is to make it look a bit more modern without spending a ton of money. We're not huge on the blue shutters and are having trouble coming up with a color scheme to paint them that goes with the white of the siding and color of the roof.
We're getting rid of the metal awning and satellite dishes, any other suggestions would be great, thanks!
q looking for suggestions to modernize the exterior of my house, curb appeal, paint colors, painting
  26 answers
  • Lagree Wyndham Lagree Wyndham on Jun 09, 2016
    Tough question. JMO you cannot get much more modern than black or gray for paint colors. Whatever you choose paint the trim around windows a different color than the shutters. Just me I would paint the door to something bright, say red or teal The one thing I would do is redo the plantings to the right of your entrance. Whats there now are out of shape and unevenly planted. Just my two cents worth. PS mulch around that dogwood, it will thank you.
  • William William on Jun 09, 2016
    I like some of Lagree's ideas. Paint the door a deep rich color, burgundy, green, blue, etc. Paint the window trim a medium grey, and the shutters black. Create a raised bed on the sides of the stairs with multi colored landscape blocks. About three high. I would also create a circle of the same landscape blocks around the tree then mulch. If you can, install a brushed nickel finish light fixture to the right of the door.
  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Jun 09, 2016
    I to can visualize a pop of color on the door. Once that is decided choose your trim and shutter color. I would definitely re-shape the front of the house with a small retaining wall and assorted plants. Once those are chosen I would also come in with some colorful annuals.I would cut the grass out by the tree and add some hostas,coral bells, or any other shade tolerant perennials.
  • MN Mom MN Mom on Jun 09, 2016
    Yes, the classic white/charcoal/black combination always wins. I think a rich color on the front door would make it appear more sophisticated whereas a bright color more whimsical. Depends on the look you're going for. Definitely go for the raised gardens as suggested by @William and add some mulch around the yard plantings. You've got a great canvas...can't wait to see the update!
  • Lori Jackson Lori Jackson on Jun 09, 2016
    How about softening the edges by letting go of the hard pruning and letting things be a bit rounder?
  • Ray Phillips Ray Phillips on Jun 10, 2016
    I would go with an 8" deck from 1 end to the other paint the door a bright red along with shutters trim the windows black. and as Lagree mulch around the tree.
  • Rosemarie Rosemarie on Jun 10, 2016
    If you are looking for a bit more contemporary look, I suggest painting the shutters a medium to darker gray. Keep the trim white, color of your choice on the door. If you can't put a stone raised bed to the left of the door, just as your local nursery what they suggest as foundation plants. There are so many that will mound up and are perennial. This house looks great and a change of color can make it traditional or a bit modern. Good luck
  • Nancy Nancy on Jun 10, 2016
    Actually I like the color of your shutters but I also understand wanting a change. I like the ideas suggested here. Color to the door, softer bushes flowering plants (color). I really like the idea of adding some type of deck, nothing too big something a little different unique maybe even wrapping around the corner to the left so it might go from the smaller area in front under the window around the left side of the house. Good luck! By the way, I like your house.
  • Cathy Stuart Cathy Stuart on Jun 10, 2016
    Find yourself a landscaping student. They work with different programs where they can change the colours easily, design gardens and give ideas without the expense of trial and error. (They need the experience). I have a friend that charges about $100 to do this type of design and that way you can see the changes ahead of time.... and you can do all at once or a little at a time.
  • Kathy Kathy on Jun 10, 2016
    I'd paint the house a warm taupe, and the shutters and trim dark hunter green, or black, or possibly even a muted dark red. Paint the inside front door one of those colors, but not the same as the shutters. Is the storm door necessary? If not remove it, or update it to an almost completely glass door. Add a nice kickplate to the inside door. Front doors can totally change the look of a house. Some differing heights in the shrubbery bed would be great, and make the planting on the other side be similar in size. Soften the hard edges on the corner of the hose nearest the driveway with either a taller evergreen or, preferably a flowering tree. Weeping cherry, or something similar. And as others have mentioned mulch always gives a yard an update. Is that a flower box under the picture window? Fill it up with flowers and put in somethings which will overhang the box. I'd even consider flower boxes under the other windows, which will bring the bottom of those windows "down" somewhat. Cute house ! Have fun with it.
  • ELISA LENZ ELISA LENZ on Jun 10, 2016
    Window boxes to extend the size of the windows on the right which look too small. Solar lights along the sidewalk to the porch. Bird bath on the right for balance. And flowers, flowers, flowers.
  • Linda duggan Linda duggan on Jun 10, 2016
    I agree with Elisa. But I'd get longer shutters to match the height of the big window. The window boxes could fit under the windows and between the extra shutter lengths that extends below.
  • Susanmarvin Susanmarvin on Jun 10, 2016
    what about a patio area with a bench and chairs with a lot of flowers and greenery
  • C C on Jun 10, 2016
    Window boxes under smaller windows would balance the look more. Or add a painted trellis in between the two windows on the right. Add non-invasive ivy or colorful blooming vines that will climb up the trellis. Create a simple open deck where the left window and door are (all the way over to include your mailbox), by using cinder blocks, either doubled up or turned on their sides laying down, as a base and add rows of boards on top. Waterproof it and you have a nice simple inexpensive deck. Use flower boxes along outside perimeter of the deck to hide the deck base and create color or fill with greenery. Or just plant shrubs along the outside of deck. You can also use cinder blocks, or large planters (or build your own box base) and add 2x4 boards across to create easy seating along top of deck edging and to give it an enclosed look. Add a small trellis (2-3 ft out from window) over left window to replace awning removed and hang a couple window framing flower pots or vines. Add two black elegant porch lights on each side of front door, along with two potted green plants on each side of door (will have room if you create a deck first) to create a nice bold accent to your entrance. A soft moss green or a softer, smoky, grey-blue on windows/trim would give your home a beautiful French country look. Paint a trellis to match shudders or use a deeper matching color for accent.
  • AndradeTea AndradeTea on Jun 10, 2016
    Window boxes would be a lovely addition. My uncle has a white house with black trim and it looks so crisp and fresh!
  • Linda Linda on Jun 10, 2016
    I think that it depends on how much money you have for this project. The house paint looks to be in good shape so I'd probably just re-landscape. Those four little boxed plants don't add interest. Use some variety of heights and colors. Love your tree; you might want to add another. I think you might be surprised what great landscaping does for a house.
  • Kathleen Kathleen on Jun 10, 2016
    How about painting your shutters charcoal to go with the roof. And the trim also. Does your tree bloom in the Spring? If not pick one that has flowers in the Spring. Believe me they dont bloom very long but when they do Wow. Crab Apple. Can anyone think of the one with white flowers or pink? Cute house though. You will miss your awning if you remove it. Charcoal would be better. Unless you dont get a lot of sun in the afternoon.
  • Roxann Roxann on Jun 10, 2016
    The the roof over your front door? Extend that out, sort of a pergola. Remove those small steps and and a front deck. The picture doesn't look like it is too tall. But the deck could be two levels that extends out into that side of the house. Then a little bit of landscaping around the edges.
  • Kathy Lovenburg Kathy Lovenburg on Jun 10, 2016
    After watching Fixer-Upper on HGTV, Joanna tends to stick with various shades of gray. Go to a paint or hardware store and get some samples and look at them outside pick 2 or 3 that you like and buy samples--paint a 2x2' section of each color. See which one you like the best! Then decide on a trim color. Landscaping---remove the bushes in front on the house -- replace with some smaller bushes. Some greenhouses/nurseries have services to help you design landscaping. Not knowing your budget or how many years you want to take and transform your home makes a difference. I would watch Fixer Upper to get some fresh ideas on homes built in different eras. Also look in Pinterest and this site for inspirational ideas to freshen your home 😉
  • Its6268865 Its6268865 on Jun 10, 2016
    I like the previous answer with the window boxes. Also, the trim painted black and new black mulch around the tree would be nice touches. I really don't think the shaped bushes are very attractive. Replace them with some that have multi-colored leaves or some that have some small blooms to add some color. Don't forget to choose plants that have some variety of height and texture. The house looks well taken care of, neat and tidy. It just needs a little color to give it some personality!
  • J. Jacobs J. Jacobs on Jun 10, 2016
    First of all you have a nice home which is obviously very well maintained. Paint the door, window boxes, new shutter color, extension on roof over door all great ideas. Stay neutral but maybe add a pop of color with the door and window boxes. They are small items and if you don't like the color, you can always repaint them easily. Maybe add an edging of brick the same color as the ones on your steps along both sides of the walkway - this will pull the hardscape together. Add a few large rocks (varying sizes) under the tree for interest and I like the idea of black mulch too. It will give that whole area presence.
  • Liz Straughn Liz Straughn on Jun 10, 2016
    Paint the shutters, awning and handrails green or black. Paint the door and mailbox a shade of red to complement the green or black. I'd pull out a couple (or all) of the shrubs and put in hostas that can tolerate the sun. Plant geraniums in between the hostas, but closer to the front of the flower beds. You can do the same on the other side, too. I'd also get some solar lights and put along the flowers/sidewalk. You could also put one of those large metal stars between the windows on the right side.
  • Lyn2398900 Lyn2398900 on Jun 10, 2016
    If you have the money, I would do what Roxann wrote. The front entrance needs to be larger. It would be such an improvement! Your house is cute!
  • Jackie Hendricks Jackie Hendricks on Jun 11, 2016
    I would leave the white, shutters most any shade of gray, lose the big bushes and replace with ornamental grasses with height (in time) along with larger perennials in between. If you use that entry frequently, you will want some kind of roof to replace awning. A gabled roof there would not be too expensive and provide protection from the weather. Paint the door above all else. Forget red - that color is overdone. A teal or green would be lovely.
    • Jackie Hendricks Jackie Hendricks on Jun 14, 2016
      @Jackie Hendricks Sorry - just now noticed the front gabled roof covers the porch. Perfect! Just remember that scale/size of plants should be chosen to maximize effect. If too small overall, then you lose impact and becomes unoticeable. If too large, overpowers the house - like the existing shrubs. Hope you post an AFTER photo!
  • Gina Maylone Gina Maylone on Jun 13, 2016
    I would lose the shrubs and do something like you did on the other side of the door. Paint the railings to match whatever color you paint the shutters. Some fancy numbers for your address and perhaps line your sidewalk with plants/flowers. Please post after pictures!
  • Juli Juli on Jun 15, 2016
    Thank you everyone so much for your advice. It has been incredibly helpful! We painted the shutters a dark grey, the door is a really pretty blue and built a raised flower bed for under the window on the left. We also removed the awning. Next step is landscaping to jazz up the place. I will make sure to post an after photo!