How to Cover Up that Ugly Outdoor Stuff!

blogYou what they say about putting lipstick on a pig – use any shade you like, but it will still look like a pig.  With all due apologies to our porcine friends, don’t you feel that way about certain aspects of your home’s exterior?  You know, those that no matter what you do continue to look bad and reflect poorly on your home’s curb appeal.

Well, you’re not alone.  And because of that, we’ve assembled ideas from several home decorators and landscapers on how to cover up or otherwise disguise 7 of the most common and unsightly outdoor “things” around your home.

Trash and Recycling Bins – They’re useful, for sure. But not the most attractive things to look at. Build an L-shaped cover or screen out of 2×4 boards, stain or paint it, and attach one side to the house or secure it into the ground. Then simply roll your bins in and out when you need them.

Gas and Electric Meters – They need to be easily accessible, which often means attached to the outside of your house for all to see. Install a piece of painted lattice in front of the utility boxes for a quick and easy cover up. Just be sure to check with your local utility company on the access and clearance rules for meters before starting such a project.

Garden Hoses – Even those handy garden hose reels, while functional, detract from your home’s curb appeal. Instead, house your garden hose in a wooden box (either built or purchased), along with a lid on top of which you can place a potted plant for a little added color.

Air Conditioning Units – You couldn’t get through those dog days of summer without it, but do you really need to make constant eye contact with your outdoor condensing unit?  Absolutely not!  Instead, you can hide it from view with a small resin or wood privacy fence.

Chipped Paint on Foundation – Painting your home’s foundation might up the curb appeal factor a bit, but eventually, the paint will peal and leave it looking like more of an eyesore than before. Now there’s a terrific remedy for this age old problem:  stone veneer siding that comes in easy-to-use sheets to give your foundation the look of real stone without the labor or cost.

Septic Tank – Does the concrete lid of your septic tank stick out like a sore thumb in the middle of your beautifully landscaped yard? Cover the lid with mulch, surround it with a few potted plants, add a small bird bath and voila! Instant focal point. And when the tank needs to be accessed, simply remove the bird bath and sweep the mulch to the side.

Back to hiding your AC condensing unit for a moment.  While your home’s exterior will definitely look better, you know what they say about “out of sight, out of mind.”  Our advice?  Go ahead and improve the look of your home’s exterior, but don’t banish your AC system from your thoughts.  Disguised or out in the open for all to see, it still needs to be professionally cleaned and inspected to perform at its absolute best.   At Optimum Air, we’re just the people you want to take the best possible care of your home heating and cooling systems, all year long.  For annual preventative maintenance service or to report a system performance problem, contact us now or any time at all.