Curb appeal, the overall attractiveness of your home when standing on the street, is incredibly important when selling your home.
Your landscaping, physical exterior, and the facade of your home are all important aspects that need to be greatly considered, and are vital if you want to sell your home for more.
Why Does Curb Appeal Affect the Sale So Much?
A potential buyer is looking for signs indicating how well the home has been kept over long periods of time, as well as signs that could show what type of person is currently living there.
If the exterior has a lawn that is manicured well and the exterior shows that maintenance is kept up to an appealing standard, it will give proof that the current homeowner takes pride in their property's aesthetics.
If a buyer sees that your curb appeal is a complete mess, there is a very good chance that they will take that sole impression and go elsewhere.
The majority of buyers will want to look online first to see some general photos of the interior and the exterior.
Having good curb appeal and attractive photos posted within your ad will ensure that you hook them straight away, so they will make an appointment with you or your real estate agent to come out and see your home.
Always keep in mind that even if the interior of your home is kept up to date with repairs, has perfect plumbing and electrical work, and is decorated nicely for appeal, the exterior and curb appeal of your home will have a big impact on a buyer's decision within the first minute or two.
Have a Welcoming Walkway
The pathway to your front door serves as an ambassador for your home, so why not make it beautiful and pleasant to look at?
Your walkway serves as the path to your home, and ensuring that it's just as beautiful as the rest of your home, both inside and outside, will definitely gain you some points with buyers.
The pathway, landing, and your front door should all blend together to provide an appealing journey from your street or driveway up to your house.
If your home's style is Georgian, Greek Revival, or Colonial, a straight path that goes from the sidewalk straight to your door is recommended.
With a straight path, you can avoid a mass of boring concrete by decorating the lane with landscaping, such as flower pots or beds.
You have a better opportunity for charming buyers if you add curious boulders, interesting trees, plant groupings in vibrant colors, or even a fountain.
If you're looking for something that's more unique, a wood walkway will do the trick.
Cedar, redwood, cypress, and teak are all weather-resistant wood that are absolutely perfect to create a beautiful walkway, and are easy to work with.
For a wooden walkway you will also need pea gravel or stone to work as a base. Wooden walkways have minimal upkeep, as you only need to stain and seal once every year.
Whatever you decide to do with your walkway, always ensure that there is no overgrowth anywhere, especially around the concrete or wood itself.
Keep in mind that incorporating too much will make your walkway look cluttered and disorganized, so remember to keep a decent balance, keep it elegant, and don't go overboard.
If you're going to decorate your walkway, regardless of what it's made of, go easy on the decorations and lawn ornaments.
Though having a couple of them is definitely a cute, fun idea that helps to make gardens and walkways pop, it's a terrible idea to bring in an entire army of them. Instead keep a limit of about 4 or 5, depending on how big your walkway is, and how full of flowers, rocks, trees, and other aesthetics it already is.
The Importance of Your Front Door
Painting your front door in a color that's both pretty and matching the overall style of the exterior is also a great way to add curb appeal in order to sell your home for more.
Having a contrast between the overall facade of your home and the front door will ensure that your curb appeal is amped up.
For example, if your house is white or gray and has black shutters, painting your front door red will create a more mysterious essence to it, and bring more beauty to your home.
Adding a wreath on your door, a potted plant by the entrance, or having boxed planters lined up on your porch near the front door, will help bring in a more positive, free flowing atmosphere, therefore making your home look like an absolute dream home to buyers.
Ensure that your front door has a fresh coat of paint, that the knob is polished, and that any pieces that need replacing, are replaced before your home is put onto the market.
Your back door also needs attention as well. For example, if you have a sliding screen door for your backyard, check if it needs a new screen, or if it needs to be repositioned on the tracks.
There is literally nothing worse than having something fall apart or not function properly when there is a buyer in your home, especially when it comes to the doors, both front and back.
Having a Well-Manicured Lawn Makes All of the Difference
If your lawn is withering, dead grass, or an overgrown mess riddled with weeds, buyers are definitely not going to be attracted to your home. Therefore, it's extremely important to have a lawn that is well manicured, and shows off just as much beauty as the rest of your home.
A lawn that appears to be too high maintenance can be a turn off, so it's best to go for a look that is neat and attractive. You don't need to go overboard with the lawn care, but instead have the grass trimmed nicely and ensure that it's healthy.
Having a simple garden somewhere around the perimeter of your home is also a great idea. You can plant flowers with bright colors, to really lighten up and bring a joyous feeling to your lawn area.
If you have a garden or want to add a special touch to the landscape, throw down some mulch that is in a darker color, such as a solid, dark wood brown. Mulch helps to neaten things up and gives the area a "clean" feeling to it. Not to mention mulch always looks good in any setting when set down the proper way. You literally cannot go wrong with it, as it adds some great curb appeal.
One thing to avoid when it comes to this area of curb appeal, is too many lawn ornaments. It's perfectly okay to have one or two in your garden, but if you have trinkets and other ornaments all over the place, especially garden gnomes, it's going to look tacky, cluttered, and just wrong.
Even though the buyer obviously knows that the lawn ornaments don't come with the house and the lawn, they could still hesitate and most likely walk away, based on pure tackiness.
The Backyard Appeal is Just as Important as the Curb
By the time a buyer gets to the backyard their decision will already be well influenced, but that does not mean you should skimp on the backyard appeal.
Your backyard should be just as beautiful as your front yard, considering your backyard appeal matters just as much as the front.
Once a buyer reaches the backyard, they will envision themselves relaxing in the sun, having family and friends over, and playing with their children or their pets there. Making a good impression with your backyard is incredibly important.
To ensure your lawn looks good, go over it with the lawn mower, add grass seed and fertilizer, then give it a good drink of water. If you have a pool or a hot tub, ensure that the cover is off and that the water is sparkling clean.
It also does not hurt to add a few last minute flowers if you do not currently have any. But don't go overboard and clutter the yard with them, as it'll end up looking messy instead of pretty and elegant.
Patio furniture also helps to make your backyard feel much more welcoming, and will help the buyer envision themselves sitting outside with friends or family on a hot day, having cold drinks, and enjoying a conversation.
You'll want your backyard appeal to give the buyer a vision that speaks positive volumes.
You want the buyer to see themselves in the backyard every summer enjoying the weather and all that life has to offer, so ensure that your backyard is in top condition, not just your curb.
Your Drive by Appeal
Potential buyers will quickly drive by your home, or park out front and see it for the first time. To ensure that your home has a good drive by appeal, keep your windows and front door in top condition. You'll also need to touch up your garage.
This means that the exterior will need to be neatened up, like painting the door. When taking a quick drive by to check out a home, minor details of the house itself stick out a lot more than you would think.
If your home is currently on the market, always ensure that the exterior of your home has fresh paint, the lawn is well manicured without looking too high maintenance, your windows are washed, and that you do not have any dead flowers in your garden.
This is also a good time to trim or prune your trees.
The Roof is Just as Important
When it comes to your roof, don't get up on a ladder and inspect it yourself, because you are probably going to miss something. Instead bring in a professional who can tell you exactly what needs to be done on your roof. Like Re-shingling, for example.
They can also make the improvements for you before you put your home on the market. Be prepared for the repair funds, which you should be paying up front.
Any buyer who is savvy will know to have the house inspected for any faults, so making all necessary repairs beforehand will ensure that the process of selling will go a lot faster.
Although you can always have your roof checked out, if there are any problems that need to be fixed you can obtain a quote from a reputable roofing company.
Further subtract the cost of the repairs from the overall selling price during the process of closing the home.
Doing so is generally convenient for both the buyer and the seller, considering the buyer will be at ease knowing that they can have things repaired and upgraded should they wish to do so.
Important and Inexpensive Repairs to be Made
When redoing your front door, it's also important to improve all of your hardware. Use metal polish on the fixtures of the doors, on the knob itself, and for all of the metal components on it.
Even though these may seem like pointless details, a large difference will definitely be made in how the buyer looks at your home. Even though this will also seem like a minor detail, get a welcome mat and a wreath that matches the overall interior style of the home.
Though the buyer obviously may not stick with your style of choice, it will help them to get a more home-like feel of the house and ensure that they can properly envision themselves living here for decades to come.
Replacing your light fixtures is also incredibly important when it comes time to sell your home. If you have outdated light fixtures, that's exactly what the lights are going to be reflected as on the exterior of your home.
Buyers want to see that everything is fresh and up to date with the times, and not light fixtures that look like they have just come out of the 80's. You don't have to install the latest light fixtures to make them look better.
You can look for fixtures that match the current mounting system you currently have installed on the exterior of your home so it will only be a replacement job, instead of a completely new installation that will get rather pricey.
You can bring in more light, should your home still be too dark. This helps make a huge impact when it comes to curb appeal, and also provide better security.
Solar stake lights are incredibly cheap when bought from home improvement stores. No one is going to want to break into a home that has a well-lit exterior.
What You Should Not Do
Even though landscaping really pertains to the ground cover and plants that are around the outdoor area of your home, the exterior paint of your home plays a large role within the entire look of the place.
Skimping on the paint on the exterior of your home is a great way to chase the buyers away. Getting a new paint job well before you plan on putting your home on the market is the best thing you'll ever do. This way the paint does not look so fresh and new, but like you've been keeping up with it for years.
The fall is the best time for repainting homes, as well as repairing siding and retouching chipped paint, because you landscape will have the best light to show in.
Most homeowners who are selling usually assume that they should only have to pay attention to soft landscaping, being the lawn and the garden but that is incorrect. Hardscaping refers to the driveway, rocks, sidewalks, and any paved areas around the home.
Power wash your driveway throughout the fall and into the winter months, just to ensure that it gets a good clean all year around and that you won't have to bring in professionals to give it a good clean for you.
Just because it's fall, doesn't mean you can skimp on pool maintenance. As previously stated earlier, pool maintenance is incredibly important when it comes to showing off your pool.
No buyer wants to see a dirty pool that's full of leaves, twigs, and dead bugs. How are they supposed to envision themselves and their family and friends enjoying a hot summer day in the pool if it's full of disgusting debris?
Pools still need to have a chemical level that is fully balanced during the fall, with any and all debris cleaned out on a weekly basis.
Just because the leaves in the fall look pretty, does not mean you should not be raking them up. Excess fallen leaves are known to hide walkways and sidewalks, and can actually be dangerous.
For example, should the leaves get wet, a pedestrian could slip and get hurt on your property. It could very well be a buyer. Therefore, rake up the leaves and avoid accidents at all costs.
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