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10 Easy Ways to Instantly Transform Your Porch

Get your outdoor space summer-ready in no time flat.

When people approach or pass your home, you have just one chance to make a good first impression. The state of your porch may well be the first thing they notice. If your porch is cluttered or just plain boring, you could be setting an unintended tone for your guests. However, interior designers and real estate experts say that with just a few simple front porch ideas, you can beautify that space and make the most of the added square footage. Read on for their top 10 tips to get your outdoor space summer-ready in no time flat.

RELATED: 8 Best Fire Pit Ideas to Turn Your Backyard Into a Cozy Hideaway.

Go green.

A beautiful landscaped front porch with white railings and hanging baskets with red flowers.

One of the simplest ways to instantly transform your porch is to add plants and greenery, says Alexandra Cooper, interior designer at Planner 5D. She notes that infusing the space with thriving flowers or foliage will add life and color, creating a more inviting and relaxing environment.

"Plants also help to integrate the porch with the surrounding landscape or garden, making the space feel more natural," Cooper says. "Use a mix of potted plants, hanging planters, and vertical gardens for variety and visual interest," she suggests.

Sebastian Jania, owner of Ontario Property Buyers, recommends considering your floral color scheme before you get going.

"Add flowers with colors that contrast with the porch color and the house color. In design, contrast is what makes things pop the most and gets the most compliments as well as the highest price when someone is selling a house," he says.

RELATED: The 5 Best Potted Plants for Your Front Porch, Gardening Experts Say.

Brighten up.

Closeup of outdoor string lights hanging from a covered porch
Alexeysun / Shutterstock

Stacey Clarke, general manager and head of product at B2C Furniture, recommends adding lights to your porch area. "This is the quickest way to transform the overall feel of the porch, as it can instantly brighten the space while opting for warmer and dimmer bulbs can create a moody and ambient feel," she tells Best Life.

Cooper points out that lighting also provides some practical benefits: "Proper lighting extends the usability of your porch into the evening and night and adds ambiance. It can also highlight architectural features and improve overall safety."

Cooper suggests combining "string lights, lanterns, and pathway lights for layered lighting effects."

Opt for cozy seating.

A woman drinking a cup of coffee or tea while sitting on her front porch
gradyreese / iStock

Cooper says comfortable seating is another must when you're looking to upgrade your porch: "Cushioned chairs, a swing, or a small sofa can make your porch a cozy retreat. It encourages people to spend more time outside, creating an additional living space." Hammocks and hanging chairs can take your relaxation to the next level.

"A practical tip is to opt for weather-resistant materials and fabrics to ensure durability," Cooper notes. 

Clarke adds that it's important to choose functional furniture pieces that also center on convenience. For instance, she says opting for outdoor furniture with hidden compartments can add to the practicality of the piece.

"A multifunctional bench with a hidden compartment is great for putting away outdoor blankets and pillows when not in use, making the space feel less cluttered and maximizing its use and longevity," she says.

RELATED: The Pioneer Woman Reveals 5 No-Fuss Ways to Get Your Dream Backyard.

Get an outdoor rug.

Colorful and modern bohemian boho outdoor front porch decoration with seating and a plant. The house is red brick and traditional.

Buying the right outdoor rug can instantly transform your porch, helping to define the space and adding an atmosphere of indoor comfort. "It also brings in color and pattern, tying together the overall design," Cooper points out.

"Choose a rug made of durable, weather-resistant materials like synthetic fibers to withstand the weather fluctuations," she recommends.

You can also rearrange the porch layout to create natural gathering spots and add to the ambiance. "Hanging swings and other non-expensive furniture alternatives can create different layouts and focal points to enjoy summer days and evenings with friends and family," she says.

Upgrade your front door.

Red front door with wreath

If you want to set the right tone as people enter your home, your front door should feel grand and inviting, says Courtney Cole, an interior designer for TileCloud.

"Although the front door is usually the focal point of the house's front, not many people think about changing the way it looks," Cole says. "A fresh coat of paint on your front door can instantly boost your home's curb appeal and make your porch stand out. Or, if you want to go big, think about replacing the door altogether for something that ties in with your newly refreshed porch."

RELATED: The Luckiest Colors to Paint Your Front Door, According to Feng Shui Experts.

Get decorative.

cozy colorful front porch
stock_studio / Shutterstock

Adding outdoor accessories can make your porch a more inviting space—and this is one area where you can really let your personality shine.

"Add personal touches like throw pillows, artwork, and decorative vases that make your porch feel more like an extension of your home," advises Cooper. "These can really help define your style and give your porch its own identity."

Roma Stiff, the senior creative projects designer at the craft store Michaels, recommends making your own seasonal wreaths. She says these will help to add texture and color to your entryway, while lending your porch a fresh look every few months.

Upgrade your welcome mat.

Welcome mat that says hello

Stiff says one of the quickest ways to upgrade your front porch is to "layer a thin welcome mat under your doormat for a grander look."

However, if you have more time on your hands, you can also personalize your porch by painting your own welcome mat or making seasonal greeting signs.

RELATED: The Best Drinks for Front Porch Sipping, Lifestyle Experts Say.

Consider color.

Young man painting porch white

Next, it pays to consider your color scheme. "One easy upgrade that one can make to their porch area is to consider changing the color of the porch," Jania tells Best Life. "This could be through painting the porch or even painting the beams if there are any on the porch. Paint is always the simplest way to make something pop."

Incorporate outdoor art

A closeup of a small Buddha statue in a garden with a blurry background

Cole recommends incorporating outdoor art to differentiate your home from your neighbors' and reflect your personal tastes.

"Make your porch reflect the inside of your home by adding decor like art, sculptures, or decorative signs to add more visual interest to your porch," she says. "Doing this can help you put more of your personality into the porch decor, and can help set the tone for the rest of your home's exterior."


gray-blue house with front porch
Jason Finn / Shutterstock

If your porch serves as a storage space of any kind, the single most important thing you can do is declutter and clean it, Jania says.

"Many porches do not look so appealing over time as people simply start to have way too many things on them, such as more tables or chairs than necessary. By simply decluttering, one is able to make the porch look more spacious and attractive," he explains.

Lauren Gray
Lauren Gray is a New York-based writer, editor, and consultant. Read more
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