Remember when you first met your boss? How about your spouse? Those first impressions are super important and leave lasting impressions. In this digital age of “go-go-go” people are used to forming spot opinions instantaneously, more than they ever have been before. Your driveway is the yellow brick road that captures the eye and leads them to your palace (well, you know what I mean). Curb appeal is more important than ever since we only have approximately three seconds to make their glimpse a positive one.
Why Curb Appeal Matters
Homes with an exterior that doesn’t look well-tended are likely limiting the number of potential buyers that will even take a look inside. These homes are lacking curb appeal, and they will probably sit on the market longer and sell for a lower price than similar homes with exteriors that look in top shape. What will they see? The first image is the driveway followed by the entry hardscape and landscape and then the house details. Boosting curb appeal doesn’t have to break the bank—a little landscaping and cleaning can go a long way toward putting a house on buyers’ must-see lists. The Cutting Edge Hardscapes are eager to design an eye-stealing driveway that onlookers cannot refuse.
Having a beautiful, well-maintained front walk and driveway increases curb appeal adds value to your home and makes coming home each day a more pleasant experience. Cracked and damaged walkways and driveways can be dangerous, causing falls and damaging tires; improving this area of your home will add beauty and increase safety. The question is should you enhance, repair, or replace? Repairing an existing driveway or path costs far less and takes less time than replacing it. Cracked asphalt can be filled and a new layer of asphalt added over the old. For badly cracked concrete drives and walks, however, repairing is not an option. This is definitely a mandatory starting point if this is your situation.
However, If your existing driveway and front walk are already in good condition, consider adding a decorative edging made from brick or pavers to boost curb appeal.
Materials To Use
You have now decided to spruce up your driveway, but what materials are best to use? There are a variety of ideas to do so, but your present foundation must first be considered.
Gravel and crushed stone driveways are the least expensive route when it comes to driveways, but take the most work to maintain. They are very hard to clear in the snow and during the mowing season, it is sometimes impossible to keep the small rocks out of your mower’s pathway.
Concrete is one of the most durable materials and lasts for 15-30 years depending on the expertise of the pourer. There are a wide array of styles for concrete available instead of the “just grey” version from decades before. Patterns can be decorated within the concrete to create a modernly fashionable look. The one problem with concrete is its ability to crack under extreme weather conditions and does not always adhere to patches and fill. This still is a popular choice for homeowners.
Asphalt is a good choice for colder climates because it has more give than concrete, but the durability of the material has a shorter shelf-life than its competitor. Asphalt is easily repaired and patched, though, which makes it a fairly easy fix to re-do.
Cobblestone and Pavers:
Cobblestone and pavers are the longest-lasting option — a cobblestone driveway or walk can last 100 years or more! They are also by far the most expensive options and require the most work initially to prepare the area and lay a foundation for the stone. Repairs are fairly easy with both; individual stones can be replaced as needed, making upkeep costs relatively low. This is also the best choice if you are eventually going to sell your home because it has the highest rate of return value.
Who You Hire Matters
Of course we think your best hardscape company to hire would be us, The Cutting Edge Hardscapes, but even if you already have one in mind, there are some important aspects to consider. Ask the pros you are considering hiring about their experience with the type of driveway or path you would like to have installed —brick and stone especially require a pro with experience to lay it properly. Some companies only have experience in one or two types of materials.
Also, your driveway and front walk designs should take both beauty and safety into account. Choose a company who realizes the proper angle of a driveway slope and how to have it properly graded to allow water to run off instead of pool. A gently curving drive or path will take up a bit more real estate, but it can be worth it if you love the look.
Call The Cutting Edge Hardscapes today
Phone: (317) 577-1019