This is the single most impactful way to elevate your curb appeal – says HGTV’s John Gidding

The expert's tip will 'imply the right things about the rest of your house' – and it's simple and cost-effective, too

An arched front double front door, painted red with glass windows
(Image credit: Erika Bonnell Interiors/Stacy Zarin Goldberg)

As the star of HGTV's Curb Appeal, it is unsurprising that John Gidding is so trusted to elevate exactly that: your home's curb appeal. 

The presenter knows how to make the right first impression – whether in regard to your front door, your railings  – or other front yard essentials that set the tone for the rest of your property. So, naturally, when talking about front yard landscaping, he shared what adds the most curb appeal, and we took note. 

John is synonymous with value-increasing front-door ideas, all of which will accentuate your home (whether you're looking to sell or not). Though, we couldn't help but wonder, if there was one single way to improve your curb appeal, what would it be? In his exclusive with H&G, the presenter shared his refreshingly simple response. 

The most impactful way to improve your curb appeal – according to John Gidding

The most significant thing you can do for your curb appeal is to fix the small, seemingly unimportant jobs that set a negative tone for the rest of your home. 

'A gutter that's not clean, a slightly cracked window – things that you have forgotten and don't even notice anymore, but anyone else who comes to your house will notice,' John says. 'What will happen is that they will assume the maintenance issues continue throughout the house. They will think there are other issues with the house, and this is just one of many.'

John Gidding-designed front door

(Image credit: Masonite)

While deciding on things like the best front door color ideas will undoubtedly improve the overall look, John suggests it is equally important to take care of the minute but inexpensive problems. 

To start, he recommends 'looking around from a stranger's eye,' whether that is a family member or friend who doesn't live in your home or even a neighbor who may have observed a small problem. 

'It can help to invite [them] and ask them to look at your façade and talk to you about it. They will see things you no longer see because you're used to them,' the expert says. 

'Fixing those tiny things that are usually only around $100 maximum. It's an inexpensive process to cross your T's and dot your I's as far as your façade is concerned, so you are implying the right things about the rest of your house.'

Front door painted in lavender surrounded by wisteria

(Image credit: Dulux)

John's advice is welcome news if you're wondering, 'how can I make the exterior of my house look expensive?' as he suggests that you can transform your yard without a significant expense. '

This is the thing about curb appeal; you really don't need to spend a lot of money. I discovered this on a show where we would do $20, $30,000 makeover projects, and for the small projects, we would do $1000 for the entire façade,' the Masonite designer says. 

'Paint, plants, front door, decorative details, and sometimes, the $1000 makeover would look just as good. Not better, but just as good as the $20,000 makeover, and that was a big lesson for me. It just goes to show that a little bit of money goes a long way. You get dollar for dollar – every investment into your facade, you get back.'

John Gidding-designed front door
John Gidding

Turkish-American designer and Harvard graduate John Gidding is best known as a presenter on Curb Appeal, in which he and his team spend $20,000 on improvements to a front yard. He was also one of the expert judges on the Fox TV show Home Free and has recently relaunched the Curb Appeal Xtreme on HGTV. 

Megan Slack
Head of Celebrity Style News

Megan is the Head of Celebrity Style News at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Livingetc and Real Homes, before becoming H&G's News Editor in April 2022. She now leads the Celebrity/ News team. Before joining Future, Megan worked as a News Explainer at The Telegraph, following her MA in International Journalism at the University of Leeds. During her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, she gained writing experience in the US while studying in New York. Megan also focused on travel writing during her time living in Paris, where she produced content for a French travel site. She currently lives in London with her antique typewriter and an expansive collection of houseplants.