Do you plan to sell your home in the near future? If so, you need to do everything you can to increase the likelihood of a quick sale. This is particularly true in a slower market that has plenty of homes but not enough demand. In such a market, you must go above and beyond to attract buyers and make the sale.
Curb appeal is one of the key factors that will determine whether a potential buyer comes inside for a closer look, or keeps on driving. So it’s worth your time and effort to improve your home’s exterior appeal.
Here are some key areas to focus on:
* Start by assessing your lawn, if you have one. The grass should be green and healthy, unless of course it’s winter. If your lawn has problems such as brown patches, you need to address those problems right away. Turning a lawn around can take time, depending on how severe the problems are.
* Is the exterior paint chipped or faded? If so, give it a fresh coat of paint. It’s relatively inexpensive, and it will do wonders for that critical first impression we talked about earlier.
* When evaluating the paint, pay particular attention to the shutters, doors and trim. Sometimes you can get away with hosing them off. Other times they simply need to be painted. If the doors and shutters are painted different / contrasting colors, you may want to standardize them.
* Planting fresh flowers can really brighten up a yard and entryway. Healthy shrubs can do the same, and they don’t cost much either. If you don’t have a green thumb, enlist help from a friend of family member who does.
* The windowpanes should be spotless, and the frames around them should be free of dirt, cobwebs and defects.
* Lighting can be used for aesthetic and safety reasons at the same time. If you have potential buyers coming by in the evenings, light up the walkways and entry. Consider using decorative lighting to illuminate landscaping features, trees, etc.
* Do you have vinyl railings, shutters or storm doors outside your home’s entryway? If so, give them a good washing. You would be amazed at what a little elbow grease can do for these areas. It’s quick, easy and affordable — all you need is a hose, a bucket, and some car wash liquid or dish soap.
Create a Plan of Attack
The key here is to avoid taking on too much work at once, or spending too much money. You need to strike a balance of cost versus gain. If you bite off more than you can chew and create a long list of improvements, you could delay your ability to show the property. Create a checklist of all the projects you feel are necessary.
Next, prioritize your projects by level of importance. Organize the list by things that must be done immediately, things that can wait, things that aren’t a big deal, etc. That way, if you run out of money or time, you’ll have the most important items out of the way first. And remember to start with the lawn and other landscaping areas. Making the grass greener is a gradual process, so start that right away.
Conclusion and Going Forward
Curb appeal is essential when selling a home because it gives buyers a good first impression. On the other hand, if they get a bad first impression when pulling up to the house, they will carry that negativity into the house with them. That’s not something you want.
Do what is necessary to improve your home’s outward appearance, but don’t take on so much that you postpone the listing / showing of the property. And get help where you need it, if you’re not handy with a certain project. All of your efforts will pay off in the end.