Updating ranch house exteriors

Admittedly, the feature that’s most appealing on the inside — the sprawling, single-story design with its open floor plan — is, externally, uninteresting at best.A few easy landscaping improvements, however, can relieve the monotony and provide a visual counterpoint to that long, low roofline.Space, accessibility and relaxed living make ranch homes popular, but their exteriors can be dull.Try these low-cost ideas for giving their outsides a little oomph. They were so popular that they accounted for nine out of every 10 new houses built.



Think small: Strategically select shorter shrubs, such as boxwoods, that won’t cover the low windows.In bunches, these groupings will catch the eye, breaking up the expanse of exterior.Then, layer in taller trees to frame the entrance or garage; evergreens will draw the eye upward and offset the horizontal roofline.Casual, contemporary style is the hallmark of a ranch home — and, sometimes, your best bet is to emphasize what you’ve already got.

Fortunately, visual interest is just a series of DIY improvements away.

Here are five ways to improve the ranch style’s exterior, transforming it from blah to beautiful.



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