If you’re in the market to sell your home this spring or summer, this is the time prospective buyers start to emerge from winter’s hibernation indoors and begin to drive around and “neighborhood peep”. Prospective buyers are visualizing themselves living in your home when they drive by. Their first impression is the exterior and how you maintain your property and they want to move into a space that feels refreshed, renewed and clean.
No matter how beautifully updated and well maintained the inside of your home is, prospective buyers will have no interest in scheduling an appointment to see the INSIDE of your home if the OUTSIDE is unappealing or unkempt. The feeling invoked by an untidy exterior is that if the outside looks this way, the inside must not be much to look at either.
When I first meet with a client that would like to sell his/her home, I always take the meeting at their home so I can note the features of the home and determine the best features to highlight in the listing. I remind my clients that a fresh, clean, safe appearance leading up to your front door and nice landscaping can be a key to selling a home.
Many aesthetic improvements can be done in a day for little or NO money and some of my ideas take a very small investment. Here are a few of my suggestions on how you can improve your home’s curb appeal no matter how little your time or budget.
NO COST IMPROVEMENTS**:
· Wash your windows & clean out your gutters
· Sweep the front stoop and/or porch
· Shine up the hardware on your front door and wipe clean the door
· De Weed mulch beds
· Pull out any plants that are dying or browning – anything that looks unkempt
· Use a rake to fluff up the existing mulch and uncover the darker pieces below
· Trim bushes and trees bordering the home and in the yard
LITTLE INVESTMENT & DONE IN A DAY IMPROVEMENTS**:
· Paint your shutters, front door and/or garage door
· Place a wreath on your front door
· Hang a wind chime
· Replace front door handle and lockset, house numbers and a wall-mounted mailbox (if applicable) so they function collectively
· Install a new porch light and/or sconces at front door and garage
· Paint or Install a new street side mailbox (or wall mounted per previous mention)
· Replace missing shingles
· Replace damaged downspouts
· Plant colorful annuals
· Put down fresh mulch
· Hang a flower basket or place one or two containers around the entrance to the home
· Install flower baskets (even in fall, you can plant colorful fall plants for color and interest)
· Repair cracks and stains on your driveway and de-weed
· Repair loose front porch and stoop railings and/or paint
A LITTLE MORE TIME AND INVESTMENT BUT STILL AFFORDABLE**:
· Replace the front door
· Install molding around the front door
· Install outdoor lighting or solar lighting along the walkway and/or mulch beds
· Add a water feature like a small fountain or bird bath
· Add shutters or accent trim
· Add a decorative fence or decorative fence panels to add interest and charm to the front of your home
· Frame your home with new planting beds at the front corners of the yard, along driveways or walkways, and immediately in front of the house.
· Replace gutters and downspouts
BIGGER PROJECTS BUT VALUABLE IMPROVEMENTS**
· Tile your front doorstep and include a built in welcome mat
· Add stone, brick, or pavers to the sides of the drive to widen it.
· Build a walkway to your front door and use contoured stone or brick
· Upgrade porch railings
· Replace siding and trim
No matter what your budget or time commitment, I’m certain that by doing just a few of the above will improve your home’s curb appeal and encourage prospective buyers to want to see more on the inside!
**Some items referenced from www. bhg.com. Look there to find more fun, inexpensive ways to enhance your curb appeal.