Your driveway is one of the biggest features of your home's exterior and one of the first things many people will see upon arriving. For this reason, it benefits your entire property to have a beautiful driveway that enhances the space.
But you may wonder how you can beautify such a utilitarian thing as a simple driveway. Here are four ways you can do so on any budget
Try Stamped Concrete
Modern stamped concrete is a fantastic way to make any section of concrete into a work of art. It involves pouring concrete and then stamping a design or texture into the top. Stamped concrete can mimic natural stone, pavers, wood, bricks, or many types of artistic designs in various colors. It's longer lasting than many of the natural materials it mimics and therefore means less work over the long run.
When working with your concrete contractor, consider the architecture and style of the home to find a design, texture, and color that complements the overall look rather than draws attention away from it.
Add a Border
If your driveway is already poured and you want to dress it up a little, you could add a simple border without breaking the bank. Stamped concrete borders give a finished look to the whole thing but don't require the cost of replacing the entire driveway.
Other border options include bricks placed side-by-side or in a zig-zag pattern along the edge, a low stone or concrete retaining wall, or a well-maintained flower garden bed. If adding a border with some height to it, be sure to allow enough clearance along the driveway sides that guests can comfortably exit and navigate around cars.
You may not immediately think that your driveway is a place to grow flowers or grass, but it can be the perfect environment for the right plants. It allows water to absorb into the ground easier and may even solve unsightly puddling issues in the yard. Free up space for planting greenery by replacing a worn driveway with two strips of concrete for the wheels of cars to drive on. Other minimalist driveway materials include bricks, pavers, or flagstones set flush with the ground.
You could opt for a simple, hardy grass that's kept closely clipped or you may want to plant a gorgeous and colorful ground cover. Check with your local nursery to find the best local, native plants that have low water needs and require little maintenance.
Give It a Shape
Most homeowners assume that short and straight is the only shape a driveway has. There's no hard-and-fast rule that your driveway must be a perfectly straight line, though. Depending on the size and shape of your yard and placement of the garage, you could take this opportunity to have some fun. A gentle curve or straight angle that sweeps toward the garage or parking area can breathe new life into your entire landscape plan.
Large yards or long entrance roads give you the chance to really make a statement with a horseshoe-shaped driveway or even a circle. Place a large and artistic focal point—such as a classic fountain, a beautiful tree, a colorful berm covered in flowers or a place to sit and watch the sunset—in the centerof such a drive. Complement your circular drive with either natural or formal decorations and a front gate to complete the look.
No matter what the front of your property looks like or how large it is, you can find ways to make it even better by replacing a boring, old driveway with any of these fun alternatives