How To Modernize The Exterior Of An Older Home

Updated:  September 9, 2023

When you drive up your street and look at your older home, can you tell how old it is? Perhaps it is stuck in the past stylistically, or potentially the exterior materials are so damaged that the home looks run down.

Either way, you can modernize your older home’s exterior to make it look like it was built recently, or enhance the charm of its original style while still fixing some of the functional issues with the exterior elements. Here are some ways to modernize the exterior of an older home and give it the curb appeal it deserves.

Modernize The Exterior Of An Older Home With New Siding Material


The best way to make a big impact on the look of your home is to update the siding material, or even cover up dated bricks or masonry with fresh new siding. You can also have a mason re-do your bricks to look more modern, but this tends to be an expensive route. We suggest you invest in siding instead and embrace the mixed materials look of modern homes. You don’t need to cover the entire home with new siding for it to look fresh.

Of course, new siding materials have other benefits than just updating the aesthetics of your home. We offer energy-efficient siding, which can help lower your home’s energy costs.

Update Or Add Soffits And Fascia


Older homes may not have had the soffits and fascia they need installed. Even if they did, these elements of the roof aren’t always replaced with shingles. They end up looking dated and providing a worse performance functionally, especially if they were designed for a time when roofs and homes, in general, were not as airtight as they are today. We can help you update your soffits and fascia.

Switch Out The Light Fixtures


Older homes often have limited outdoor lighting fixtures. Lighting that was original to the home is typically dated, intricate and inefficient. Lighting that was added recently may have been done primarily for safety reasons, which means stylistically, these lights may stand out like a sore thumb.

We suggest that you take time looking for new lighting. Balance out needs like style and security, looking for lighting that will provide all of the brightness you need, as well as features like motion sensors, without neglecting how the light fixtures look on your home. Embedding lights into your soffits, the concrete on your steps, or the siding can help keep the lights low-profile if this modern stylistic choice will work with your home.

Windows: Restore Or Replace?


If your windows are old, they can add to the dated feeling of your home’s exterior. Chipped paint and dried caulking can make the home look neglected. Older windows may also have stylistic flourishes that just don’t work well with modern home exteriors.

What is worse is that old windows often perform poorly, efficiency-wise, letting heat out in the winter and letting heat in during the summer. If your windows are guilty of this, the time has likely come to replace them.

You might choose to restore your windows instead if they have a modern style or could work with the other changes you’re making to your home’s exterior. If you choose to restore the windows, you certainly want to repair any damage the glass, frame, or caulking has suffered over the years.

Choose A New Front Door


That old front door isn’t doing anything to beautify the exterior of your house. Adding a new modern-looking door will help create a focal point that everyone is drawn to when they see your house. (Not to mention the added security a new front door offers with all the modern safety features a homeowner wants.)

Repaint The Trim Of Windows And Doors


Not ready to get rid of your old windows or doors yet? One simple way to modernize them without doing any major work is to simply repaint the trim. Choosing white is the most natural option and one that looks the best with most modern home exteriors.

However, you should also consider choosing a more dramatic colour that can make your home look more unique and appealing. Black window trim has been in style for a while, and it certainly makes a bold, high contrast statement. According to BHG, other good options include a shade that is just a bit darker than your siding’s colour, a bright colour that contrasts your shade of siding, or a charcoal or other shade of grey.

Be Cautious Of The Garage Door


While some people paint their garage door the same shade as their front door, if you choose something that contrasts starkly with your other exterior colours, you could regret it. A garage door is not typically a part of the exterior that you want to emphasize visually since it takes up so much space.

We suggest that you pick a different colour, a neutral tone that works with your siding, for the garage door. That is, unless your new front door is a simple neutral that blends in, where it would be worthwhile then to match them.

Restore Classic Elements


You may not want your home to look completely modern. It often makes sense to restore the classic elements of your home’s style while still modernizing other aspects. This blend makes your home look up-to-date without stripping it of charm and character. Elements you might choose to restore include:

  • Pediment: The pediment is exterior crown molding over the front door. It can look quite elegant but choosing a more modern style can prevent it from also looking dated.
  • Columns: Columns, especially those in stone, are often worth restoring to add texture and interest to the home.
  • Shutters: Window shutters on the exterior make windows look larger and often add contrast and elegance to a home.
  • Dentil molding: These are decorative blocks for porches and other parts of the home exterior.

Which classic elements are right for your house? Have your home’s style identified by an expert, or try to find older photos of the home in order to get inspired.

Get Help Modernizing Your Home’s Exterior

The team at Weaver Exterior Remodeling can help with many aspects of updating your home’s exterior, including siding, new windows and doors, new soffits, and much more. Get a quote today.



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Weaver has over two decades of experience and provides comprehensive installation services for windows, doors, and aluminum in the Barrie region, making it a convenient option for all project sizes.