Curb appeal is one of those real estate buzz words that everyone’s heard a million times, but what exactly is it? It’s all about first impressions. Buyers want the ‘white picket fence’, not the Bates Motel. If your house looks inviting from the street, potential buyers want to come in and see more. That’s a good thing.
So, where to start…
- Mailbox: Your mailbox is the first thing everyone sees as they look for your house. If it is falling off the post with illegible numbers and surrounded by weeds, you can bet they will keep right on driving.
- Lawn: During the summer months, your grass needs to be kept mowed and watered. An unkempt lawn is not attractive. Buyers will wonder why you can’t be bothered to mow and, worse, what else you neglect.
- Branches: Trim back all bushes and tree branches. Not only is it a good idea to get this done before the summer storms come, but it also adds to your curb appeal to keep it all neat and orderly.
- Mulch: Even if you don’t have a green thumb, simply adding fresh mulch to your garden beds just perks everything up. It smells good when you walk by, hides any weeds you may have missed, and gives the appearance of a well-kept home.
- Potted Flowers: Let’s face it. Potted flowers at the front door are just a classic curb appeal move. They look cheerful. Plain and simple. Just don’t forget to water them.
- Windows: Your homes windows should sparkle when your home is on the market. Get out there and wash them. With a few simple tools and a Saturday afternoon, you can add value to your home by making it shine.
- Gutters: Cleaning the gutters is good for two reasons. Not only does it add to your curb appeal, but the home inspector will notice that they are not clean. His job is to report what is wrong with your home to the prospective buyers after they make an offer. Don’t give him anything to complain about.
- Shutters: If your shutters are hanging loose or missing a mate, fix that. Yesterday. Buyers can spot that from a mile away. A hanging shutter can take your home from ‘possibility’ to ‘meh’ in seconds.
- Front Door: Take a hard look at your front door. If the paint is peeling or faded, consider a fresh coat. New paint makes everything look better.
- Doorbell: Maybe it was broken when you moved in. Maybe it doesn’t bother you. Fix it – because it will bother any potential buyers. They will wonder what else is wrong when they should be entering your home excited. You want them wondering if your house is ‘the one’, not mentally adding to their ‘to do’ list.