If you’re getting your home ready to sell, don’t forget the outside when you consider sprucing up the home. I’ve seen over the years the effect of curb appeal on home buyers. Great curb appeal is a first impression that can set the tone for how the buyer views the rest of the home. If they feel a strong “Welcome Home” message from the time they approach the home, they are much more favorable to the rest of the home. I’ve put together some basic tips for achieving great curb appeal for your home.
1. The front door has to give the ‘Welcome Home’ message loud and clear. A fresh coat of paint is a must, new door knobs and hardware, if the old ones are worn, and a new kick plate if appropriate. Studies show that red is a favorite color, if it fits in with the style and colors of the home. Create a focal point at the front door by adding a wreath of flowers, or a cozy chair or bench if there is room.
2. Wooden trim must be repaired of wood rot and freshly painted. Buyers spot wood rot right away and suspect that the home might have other deferred maintenance issues.
3. Overgrown plantings also scream of lack of maintenance. Trim bushes and trees and put a layer of new mulch on beds. If you can’t plant some colorful flowers, put some potted flowers near the doorway. Colorful flowers are friendly and welcoming.
4. Renting a power washer for a day can take care of a lot of problems. Power washing mold and algae off of outdoor surfaces is important, mold shouts deferred maintenance to most buyers. Power wash driveways, walkways, stoops, porches, siding and decks, making a clean, sparkling impression.
5. Paint faded shutters to make a clean fresh look. Re-think windows that are without shutters, keeping symmetry in mind. Staining or painting siding may be necessary if the house is faded and dingy. Address repairs in siding and roof shingles. If you have repairs that will need to be done, doing them before you list the house will eliminate negatives in the buyer’s mind and may even net you more in an offer.
6. Putting new black top on the driveway can sharpen up the approach to the house. If you can afford it, take care of cracks in cement and walkways.
7. It may sound like a small thing, but a ratty-looking mailbox will really stand out once you’ve done all the other sprucing up. Home supply stores carry lots of types so that you should be able to find one that fits your home’s style for a reasonable cost.
8. Start using a product like Scott’s Weed and Feed right away, so your lawn will be in great shape. And it may go without saying, but keep the lawn mowed when you have your home on the market.
9. Make sure your house is easy to show. Put the lockbox in a prominent place and make sure walkways are clear.
10. Keep the entrance well-lit for night-time showings. After you’ve spent all this effort on your curb appeal, you don’t want buyers to miss it in the dark. You also don’t want any accidents.
You don’t have to spend a lot of money on any of these projects, in fact you shouldn’t. Just consider a little elbow grease a good investment. Make sure you don’t overdo anything, including paint colors, flowers, and outdoor furniture. You don’t want to overwhelm your visitors, you just want to make them feel welcome. Welcome enough to want to stay!
All of this effort will pay off when you grab a buyer’s interest before they even walk through the front door.
Karen Highland writes articles to inform buyers and sellers about the real estate market in Central Maryland for Frederick Homes For Sale by Highland Group – Real Estate Teams
301-831-9947 50 Citizens Way
Frederick Maryland 21701
Associates at Real Estate Teams LLC
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