The Real Costs of Giving Your Home an Exterior Upgrade
Curb appeal is important: The way your home looks from the street is what gives visitors a first impression of your property. That's why exterior updates are so popular, but before you hire a professional to install new siding or peruse paint chips for the front door, it's important to know how much these types of upgrades generally cost. Once you start tinkering with the exterior façade, you may not want to stop, and depending on the scope of the job—whether it's a simple repair or a full replacement—the cost could vary widely. Plus, some jobs may be a reasonable do-it-yourself project while others require calling in the professionals.
Ahead, we've broken down the average costs associated with popular exterior home updates by talking to experts in the field.
Give your front door a new look.
"A new coat of paint can [also] be a nice greeting when you come home each day," says designer Ted Roberts, Schlage's style and design expert. "Make sure you balance the color with other accessories in complementary finishes." Expect to pay between $10 and $80 for a quart of latex- or oil-based exterior paint, says HomeAdvisor, which should be followed by a coat of paint in a semi-gloss finish. According to this handy list from Lowe's, you will also need exterior primer and painter's tape, sandpaper, caulk, tack cloth, and paintbrushes or rollers. For a brand-new door, the cost varies—you'll find options from $475 (vinyl slab door using existing frame) all the way up to $6,000 (custom bi-fold glass and steel), says Cristina Miguelez, a Fixr remodeling specialist.
Paint the exterior.
You'll need a ladder and to feel comfortable in touching up the paint trim before you commit to this job. Odds are, this is a task you'll outsource. "The average homeowner spends more than $5,000 on a new exterior paint job," says Zach Tanner, founder of Painter Bros.
Replace or repair siding.
"Replacing [siding] costs anywhere from $3,000 to $13,000, or between $1 and $8 per square foot," says Andra DelMonico, Trendey's lead interior designer. Materials are a determining factor. While vinyl installation starts at $4,500, "average cost for cedar siding is $13,500," says Miguelez. "For solid stone siding the costs are around $60,000, based on 1,500 square feet."
"Siding repair is much more affordable ($100 to $2,000)," says DelMonico. "If your home has siding, it's smart to make the repairs and improve the look of your home."
Install new windows.
Replacing windows runs between $3,500 and $8,500, says Miguelez, "with most homeowners paying around $5,500 for 10 vinyl double-hung Low-E glass windows." As with most other upgrades, the final cost really depends on the size of your house. "To replace all windows in a home for wood framed, double-paned, Low-E glass windows in different sizes can cost up to $22,000," she says.
Hang new shutters.
"Refurbishing or repairing shutters is often not worth it or not possible," says DelMonico. "Wood shutters are just as expensive as new ones, making them easier to replace. Consider refurbishing in special circumstances, such as restoring historical shutters. Vinyl and composite shutters are more likely to require replacement because they are harder to repair." Adding new shutters, she says, runs an average of $130 to $200 per shutter. Touching up with paint "can be as low as $10 to $20," adds Miguelez.
Reinforce the porch.
If boards are sagging and the structure is creaking it may be time for a new porch. Be sure to factor in the square footage, design, and space devoted to steps and railings. "A simple portico with metal roof and one single step will cost as low as $5,000," says Miguelez. "Most homeowners tend to spend on average $20,000 to add a 16-by-20 foot wood porch, including wood decking, pillars, and asphalt roof." If the structure is sound, then a repair costs $1,500 on average, she says, and just $300 for the stairs.
Try easy, budget-friendly refreshes.
A "new porch" could mean swapping out furnishings and adding potted plants. "DIY is in, and if you can't go thrifting, you might even have some indoor furniture that can repurposed with a coat of all-weather paint," says Roberts. Annual flowers like marigolds (a six-pack costs around eight to ten dollars) add additional color—or simply bring your indoor plants outside.