Fall is one of the best times of year to show off your home’s curb appeal. However, it is also the season when poorly maintained yards and exteriors will quickly turn away prospective buyers. Whether you’re selling a small home or a mansion, sprucing up the landscaping and exterior features of your home will greatly boost its curb appeal! Below are tips to improve your curb appeal to attract summertime buyers.
The first rule of curb appeal is to create a clean and tidy appearance. Buyers view the yard and exterior of a home as an extension of its interior condition. In other words, if the outdoors is unkempt the interior will be thought to be neglected as well. That being said, it is important to remove all weeds and dead plants. Pruning back of existing shrubs and trees is also recommended to give your yard a tidy appearance. Keeping the lawn trimmed is also extremely important for overall appearance and to avoid lawn maintenance concerns for prospective buyers. In addition to landscaping clean-up, exterior eyesores should also be eliminated if possible. For instance, an unsightly electrical meter box could be painted to match the color of the house and the outdoor air conditioning unit can be concealed by a small lattice fence or a cleverly planted shrub. Overall, removal or concealing of unwanted distractions is the necessary first step in creating great curb appeal.
Welcome the Buyer
In real-estate, first impressions are extremely important. The landscaping and exteriors of your home should provide a warm welcome to prospective buyers. To do so, we recommend the following easy but important curb appeal improvements:
- Make sure walkways into your home exist and are in good shape. This may mean installing a flagstone walkway, replacing an existing cracked concrete walkway or painting them with concrete stain to provide a fresh new look.
- Pay particular attention to the front door. If it looks dated or damaged, it should be replaced or provided a fresh coat of paint.
- Give your mailbox a makeover. Mailboxes often get overlooked by sellers, but are an important component in providing a welcoming first impression.
The exterior design of windows can be greatly improved by adding flower boxes and shudders. Both are inexpensive and relatively easy to install. They make windows look bigger, break-up large and boring exterior walls and provide visual interest.
Landscaping for Curb Appeal
Once your yard looks clean and tidy it’s time to reel in buyers with the addition of lush landscaping. Below are a few guidelines for adding landscaping elements for curb appeal:
- Keep in mind the size of the home when choosing plants. A small home can be overwhelmed by a bush that is too large and little plants will barely be noticeable in front of a large home. Try to find a nice balance of plant size and quantity in relation to the size of the house and the yard.
- Planting trees and shrubs are a great way to increase the value for your home. However, make sure they are planted an appropriate distance from the house and other landscaping. A poorly planted tree can be seen as a huge future burden to a prospective buyer.
- Use a few large colorful planters to bring visual interest to the yard. Plant in them flowering plants which have a long blooming period.
- Low maintenance is key. When landscaping for curb appeal it is essential to provide as beautiful of a yard as possible without creating what can appear to be a huge yard maintenance issue for buyers. For instance, a fish pond may look lovely, but will the new owners want to maintain it? It’s best to plant mostly perennials with just a few annuals as accents. You want the buyers to feel that they will be able to maintain the landscaping you have created, not be overwhelmed by its quantity or complexity.