I’m going to let you in on a secret few homeowners know and even fewer care about: Spending a few hundred dollars on trees and shrubs can add significant value to your home.
Not enough people know this, but one of the secret low-cost, low-maintenance, high-return investments you can make in your home is to put in crepe myrtles. This is a family of flowering shrubs and trees which range from 8-feet to 30-feet tall. They are cheap, with most species costing between $40 and $70 at chains such as Lowes. Also, they are relatively lightweight and fast-growing, so if you put them in this year they will grow to full size in ten to 15 years. All that shade will look beautiful in the spring and also lower your energy bills in the summer.
Take this house I am remodeling, for example.
One of the reasons I decided to buy this house is that it is sitting on a south-facing hill. The hillside is currently overgrown to such a degree that you can only barely see the house in the above photo (it’s the blue blur at the top of the stairs), but once the overgrowth is removed I plan to put in 4 or 5 crepe myrtles. (I will also probably put in a few flowerbeds next to the driveway.)
All those flowering trees will look gorgeous next spring, and they will make the house stand out when I put it on the market.
I won’t be able to get to this project for a few months, and it won’t look like anything much until the following spring, but when I get a chance I will post after photos.