Don’t Let Buyers Drive Away – The Importance of Curb Appeal for Selling Your House

curb appeal improvementsDid you ever hear the expression, “You never get a 2nd chance to make a good 1st impression?” That is usually true with people, but most definitely true with buyers.

Today, many prospective purchasers just get in their cars and drive through neighborhoods that they are interested in.  When they see a for sale sign, they will stop and look.  If the exterior of the house and front lawn do not hold their attention, these buyers will discard this property as a possible choice for their future home.

Exterior things to do to create interest in your home:

1.  Remove all dead shrubs and trees; this includes partially browned ones also.  This is true particularly under trees as they suck up the water and kill off grass and other plants surrounding the trunk. You can line the dead patch with large stones or bricks and make the trees stand out as a beautiful feature in your garden. Replace as much dead and sick trees and bushes as financially possible – keeping in mind that less is sometimes more.  Make sure to check from the street if any trees or shrubs are obscuring any of your house’s features, or make it dark and uninviting, prune them into shape.

2.   Plant flowers to freshen up the curb appeal. Adding a splash of color can be the easiest and cheapest way to make a big impact on your curb appeal.  Flowers in front of the house, inside flower boxes, along the sidewalk, planted in hanging baskets, decorating the porch, or even flower beds will provide a giant boost to your curb appeal.  Be sure to ask your local nursery for recommendations as to what will grow in the particular season and region. Keep in mind to enhance your landscape, not to overpower it.

3.   Strategically place solar accent lighting around borders or flower beds which will highlight the property.  Make sure you don’t overdo.

4.  Clean Up: Remove all debris, bikes, toys, and items that you’ve just left over the years. You want your prospective buyers to imagine their life on your lawn, not think about yours.

5.  Power wash or paint the exterior if necessary – it sounds like a lot of work, but has a huge impact! A fresh coat of paint or power wash will do wonders. You should also consider painting your front door and upgrading the hardware to give your house personality.

6.  Repair or replace loose shutters, rusted rails, bare grass patches, loose steps, etc.  Don’t forget to replace the doorbell that doesn’t work.

7.  And of course, keep the grass mowed.

Prospective buyers will let their real estate agents know about your house.  This will turn into appointments, and a sale for you.  Hooray!