Remember that the outside of your home is the first thing potential buyers will notice about it. If the outside is appealing, prospective buyers will want to view the interior as well. This is why it is important to begin working on the outside first.
Begin by working your way around the property, picking up all the waste and refuse you find. After you have finished picking up and throwing way all of the trash, make another tour of the property and do away with any clutter that might be present. Clutter may include:
– Yard care tools
– Kids’ toys
Simply removing all of the clutter and refuse can make a huge difference to the exterior appearance of your home.
Trim the Shrubbery
Shrubbery and other greenery around your home that has taken on an unkempt look can be seen as a sign of neglect by prospective buyers.
Make and effort to keep the shrubs and bushes neatly trimmed and shape to provide an overall impression that the entire property has been well-maintained and cared for.
For an additional touch, work to keep the shrubbery in line with all other greenery as well as outdoor decorations present on your property. This will create more of an appealing appearance from the street level and create more interest as well.
If your shrubbery has grown so large that it makes approaching your property difficult, it could well be time to consider taking the shrubs out altogether. Remember that shrubbery that is too large will make your home appear smaller and can also create a safety hazard.
A couple of hours should be all it will take to get the job done. This is an inexpensive task that you can handle yourself; however, if you simply do not have the time or the ability or even the inclination to handle the job consider hiring a professional. The job will cost between $35 and $45 per hour; however, it will be well worth this small investment in the end when your home is sold.
Flowers, particularly bright flowers can go a long way towards livening up the exterior of your home in an easy and inexpensive manner. The flowers you plan need not be exotic or expensive. Even cheap, low maintenance flowers such as the following will work well:
– Sweet asylum
– Bachelor’s buttons
Your local garden center will be able to help you in choosing the best selections for your location. Keep in mind; however, that annuals tend to be less expensive than perennials and they will work just fine.
Try to mix a few bright colors such as yellow and pink to provide a happy appearance to the home. Plant your flowers in containers on porches, in flower beds and under windows to create varying levels of warmth and depth.
Landscaping: Mow the Lawn
A well manicured lawn is a sign of a property that has been well cared for. When you are trying to sell your home the landscaping of the front as well as the back should look its very best. Landscaping will add a huge contribution to the overall resale value of your property. In fact, homes with excellent landscaping tend to sell for 5% higher than homes with inferior landscaping. Homes with poor landscaping can even sell for as much as 10% less. Obviously, this is a huge difference in the overall selling price of your home.
So, how much time and money should you dedicate to the landscaping of your property while trying to sell? Keep in mind that even a minimal amount of time and money will aid in selling your home as well as getting an increase in the sales price. Each effort you make will be worth it.
That said; however, you should not overdo it. Landscaping is not meant to be a selling feature, it is only something will help in the appearance of your home.
Your lawn should be mowed in a manner so that it is even and short. Take the time to keep it well weeded and use a weed eater for the edges to provide a superior finished touch.
If you notice any bald or bare spots in your lawn, take the extra step to purchase a bad of seed and fill the spots in. This can be particularly important if you have pets that dig.
After you fill in the dead spots, be sure to water the areas, especially after your pets go outside. Watering those areas will dilute the urine and prevent it from burning the grass.
Be sure Porches and Railings are in Good Repair
Porch railings tend to become wobbly and may appear worm over time after exposure to the elements. This can be a safety hazard as well as appearing unattractive. Review your railings to determine whether they need repair. In some cases, railings may simply need a bit of tightening in the bolts. An adjustable wrench can be used to tighten them quite easily.
If the railings have been screwed into the brick of your home the sheath may have become worn down or broken. In that case, you will need to replace the sheath. This is not costly or time consuming. It can be performed in under half an hour and you can purchase the materials needed at your local hardware store. Simply remove the screws and the sheaths. The railing will come down, so place it aside for the moment. Put the new sheath in place and screw the railing back on.
Maintain the Shutters
Shutters can add a charming touch to any home. When in good shape they add a comforting, warm touch to any finish. If they are not well maintained; however, they can quickly make a home appear neglected. The good news is that it does not require a lot of time or skill to repair shutters. With most shutters, a quick sanding and one to two coats of exterior house paint will make your shutters look good as new.
Ideally, it is best to remove the shutters before you begin sanding and painting them. First, clean them of any dirt and then give them a light sanding. Wipe them down again to remove dust particles from the sanding. Now, you are ready to paint.
You may opt to spray paint or brush paint. Either choice will provide a nice result. Be sure to allow them to dry completely before reattaching them to the home.
Many homes are made of brick with wooden trim. Generally, wooden trim is located on porches and on the ends of the home. As time passes, the wood trim can become worn and the paint may become cracked and dull.
A bit of touch-up paint can give your home a fresh new look. Depending on the amount of trim you have, it should not take more than three hours to complete the task.
In some cases, you may need to sand areas before you can paint them. Sanding will help the new paint to cure better than applying it directly to old paint-especially if there was a cracked surface. A palm sander will work well for this project.
Be Sure your House Numbers are Visible
This can seem like a little matter; however, it can make a big difference when selling your home. Potential buyers must be able to find your home in order to consider buying it.
If your house numbers were carved into the exterior surface, take the time to make sure they can still be seen from the street. If you find it is difficult to read them, paint the numbers using a crisp clean color so they are readily visible.
If the numbers have been mounted on the house, be sure they are in good condition and match your home. Are they still stylish? If not, replacing them is an easy and inexpensive matter that will make a huge difference in providing your home with a modern, updated look.
Make the Front Entrance Beautiful
The front entrance to the home, including the porch, nearby windows and front door is tremendously important. Remember that this is where prospective buyers will pause first and be given the opportunity to gain a very up close impression of your home.
Therefore, you want to make sure it has tremendous appeal.
The door should be sharp in appearance. It necessary, give it a fresh coat of paint. Take the time to be certain that the hardware is polished or freshly painted. Other ideas on ways you can beautify the entrance include:
– Painting or replacing the mailbox
– Installing bright porch lights
– Providing a new welcome mat
Be sure as well that the doorbell, if you have one, is working.
Next, take a look at the overall building and ask yourself the following questions:
– Are the windows clean?
– Is the siding clean?
– Are the gutters clean?
– Are the corners free from spider webs and vines?
– Is the walkway clean? Does it have a defined edge?
Checking all of these items can easily be done in a little time and make a tremendous difference in selling your home.