Photo: Flickr / Big Grey Mare
Spring has officially sprung: warmer temperatures are among us, the sun is now shining, and flowers are finally blooming. Seeing as the weather is allowing us to spend a lot more time outdoors these days, now seems like the perfect time to tackle the visual aspects of our home’s exterior and consider ways of increasing curb appeal.Attractive curb appeal can be the key to a successful sale for a number of homeowners who are currently struggling in a down economy. Oftentimes, we only get one chance to make a good first impression, so it’s no surprise that an unkempt front yard or a faded exterior paint job can have homebuyers believing that a property’s interior is in need of just as much maintenance.
In order to get the best bang for your buck when it comes time to put your house on the market, take a look at these five easy steps for increasing a home’s curb appeal and consider if you should tackle any of these projects for your home:
It’s amazing how much the colour and condition of your home’s exterior paint job can sway a homebuyer’s initial opinions of the overall feel of your home. If your home is in need of a fresh coat of paint, carefully consider which colour you want to use. While you may prefer bold or unconventional colours, the general public might feel otherwise so consider picking a neutral colour that will appeal to the masses.
If you feel that a full paint job to your home’s exterior is unnecessary, but still think that it lacks an updated element or a pop of colour, consider just painting your home’s trim instead. This minor exterior makeover can automatically make a home stand out in a positive way compared to other homes on the same street and can also have the ability to transform the home from the outside in.
Driveway or Walkway
Paul Bianchina of Inman News explains that driveways and walkways are usually considered a dominant feature of a home’s exterior and that because of this, any noticeable cracks, uneven surfaces, or oil-stained areas of the concrete can be distracting for homebuyers.
If your driveway or walkway is in need of repair, consider replacing the surface or updating the pavement with stones or bricks. A more simple and affordable way of improving the driveway or walkway’s surface is to simply add a coloured concrete resurfacer. The entrance of your home will become more welcoming and as a result, you could see more homebuyers driving up to take a look at your home in full.
Take a look at your home’s exterior when it is nighttime to get a new perspective on its appearance. Does your home have any inviting sources of outdoor lighting? If not, consider adding lights to accent your home’s front door or front walkway.
If your home already has exterior lighting, make sure that all the bulbs are lit. Additionally, if you have any lighting along an exterior walkway, but it is covered by overgrown shrubs or grass, make sure to trim the landscaping to ensure that your home stays evenly lit for any visitors who might be stopping by.
Most likely, you can probably visualise the big picture of your home’s exterior, but can you visualise all the small details that make up that same area? You may not notice that your home’s displayed address numbers are looking a little dull or that your mailbox has gotten a little out of shape, but there is a good chance that a homebuyer will be paying close attention to all of these elements.
Kiplinger recommends carefully examining the small details of your home’s exterior and making minor repairs before putting your house on the market. A few simple additions, such as placing an inviting wreath on the front door or cleaning any smudged windows can truly make a difference in how long your home ends up staying on the market.
One of the most essential factors when it comes to whether or not a home has good curb appeal is landscaping. A home’s exterior can be fully transformed when it is bordered by a plush, green lawn and spruced up flower beds versus overgrown weeds and dead grass.
If your home’s landscaping falls in the latter category, fortunately, there are a number of easy and affordable ways to give your landscaping a much needed makeover. If your lawn is covered underneath layers of dead leaves, rake your yard clean. Also, begin fertilizing and watering your lawn regularly and make sure to trim any overgrown trees or bushes.
Once your yard has been cleaned up, plant some new flowers or shrubs along the edge of your house. If the environment of your front yard isn’t the opportune place for creating a flowerbed, Kiplinger recommends adding a few container gardens by your front door, which are ready-made and easy to maintain.
Before you know it, your home will stand out among a sea of other properties on the market and you might be seeing a little extra cash in your pocket as a result!
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