Making an Old Porch Look More Inviting

This week we’re helping a couple improve the front porch of their home to create a warmer welcome for their guests.

Michael and Leigh Ann’s house sits on eight and a half acres in the country. Even though they don’t actually have a curb, they want to improve their curb appeal.


The Projects

Front porch handrail with a rotten wood spindle
This rotten spindle compromises the constructional integrity of the handrail. (3 Echoes Content Studio)

Repair/Replace Handrail Parts

The front porch handrail needed some attention — the spindles needed to be caulked and some of them were even rotting.

Auto body filler fills a hole left behind from a spindle on the bottom rail of front porch handrail
Once we remove the rotting portion of the bottom rail, we fill it with auto-body filler to smooth out the surface. (3 Echoes Content Studio)

Once we remove the rotten spindles, we discover the rails below them are in rough shape. So, we mix up some auto-body filler to smooth them out. This stuff is also great for filling cracks and screw holes. 

We replace the rotten wood trim at the base of the stairs with cellular PVC. Because this stuff is plastic, it will never rot.

Hands use a caulk gun to apply caulk around a new wood spindle on a front porch handrail
Caulking the new spindles gives them a finished look and also seals out water to prevent rot. (3 Echoes Content Studio)

Meanwhile, to replace the missing spindles, we cut pressure-treated lumber down to match the size of the old spindle. Then, we match the angle on each end and nail them in place. 


Overhead view of a front porch with gray deck boards and handrail tops with an American flag flying from a post.
The gray color not only contrasts with the white siding, but also compliments the home’s metal roof. (3 Echoes Content Studio)

Paint Deck Boards

The white deck boards blended in with the home’s white siding, so we’re painting them gray to add some contrast.

Behr Premium Porch and Patio Floor Paint next to a paint tray resting on front porch deck boards
Behr Premium Porch and Patio Floor Paint (3 Echoes Content Studio)

Not only are we going to change the color, but we’re also going to use paint that’s specifically made for this type of project — Behr Premium Porch and Patio Floor Paint from The Home Depot. It’s thicker and more durable than standard paint, so it holds up better to scruff and foot traffic. 

We roll the paint onto the deck boards, then use a brush to get the color in between each board.

Then, we paint the stairs, plus the tops of the handrails to add some extra color and contrast.


Concrete squares form an incomplete walkway in a yard
The couple’s existing walkway is non-functional — incomplete and leading to nowhere. (3 Echoes Content Studio)

Install New Path

Michael and Leigh Ann had a sidewalk to nowhere below their front porch steps.

To get rid of it, we start removing the old concrete stepping blocks with a shovel, until Michael steps in with a little more horsepower from his tractor.

Danny Lipford spreads concrete on a Quikrete Walkmaker form
Creating a new path from scratch is easy when you use Quikrete’s Walkmaker forms. (3 Echoes Content Studio)

To give them a complete walkway, we’re using Quikrete’s Walkmaker building form in the European Block Pattern. 

Watch How to Create a Walkway with Quikrete Walkmaker for a more step-by-step guide on how to do it.

We also: 

  • Repaired the lattice
  • Trimmed bushes

Today's Homeowner TV Host Danny Lipford and Co-Host Chelsea Lipford Wolf pose for a picture with homeowners Michael and Leigh Ann Riley.
Today’s Homeowner TV Host Danny Lipford and Co-Host Chelsea Lipford Wolf pose for a picture with homeowners Michael and Leigh Ann Riley. (3 Echoes Content Studio)

Post-Production Thoughts

​​Mike and Leigh Ann have a beautiful piece of property that they share with their horses. But they felt like the front of their house lacked the visual appeal that the land it sits on deserved.

The walkway to it was incomplete and unattractive, while the front porch was a sea of dingy paint, stuck on the front of a white house. There was nothing to draw you in or make you feel welcome.

But now, the front porch is freshly painted, and even though we only added a little gray to the mix, there’s enough contrast to give the space some personality.

The rotten wood and peeling paint are gone, and so is the poorly poured sidewalk. In its place is a symmetrically arranged walkway of 12 stepping stones that create a graceful transition to the porch steps.

The porch that once had no greeting for guests now invites you to pull up a chair and enjoy the view.


Other Tips From This Episode

Simple Solutions
What You Should Know About Coffee Grounds for Plants
Best New Products
Werner’s 6-ft. Ladder Keeps Tools and Parts at Your Fingertips
Split screen of two images; the left side shows a gray concrete patio made from Quikrete WalkMaker and the right side shows a multi-colored concrete patio made with Quikrete WalkMakerWatch and Learn
How to Create a Walkway with Quikrete Walkmaker 

Products Featured in This Episode

Walkway

Railing

Paint


More Inspiration

Previous articleWhy You Should Recycle Coffee Grounds for Plants
Backed by his 40-year remodeling career, Danny served as the home improvement expert for CBS’s The Early Show and The Weather Channel for more than a decade. His extensive hands-on experience and understanding of the industry make him the go-to source for all things having to do with the home – from advice on simple repairs, to complete remodels, to helping homeowners prepare their homes for extreme weather and seasons.

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