When you’re ready to sell your home, time is quite literally money. In this competitive seller’s market, you can capture the attention of buyers by taking simple steps to boost curb appeal. The following suggestions from our team are tried-and-true methods to ensure your home is snapped up as swiftly as possible.
Take a Photo to Gain Perspective
We view our homes through our own personal lens. This lens is colored by our emotions, experiences, expectations, and preferences. To help homeowners overcome this hurdle, we recommend taking a photo from the street. This type of photo will be the style prospective buyers will first encounter and will capture the first impression your home will make during tours and open house events.
View the photo in both color and black and white. This can help you see the overall impact of your home’s curb appeal. With this perspective in mind, consider taking the following steps anywhere they’re applicable to your property.
Upgrade Your Mailbox
A time-worn, dirty mailbox is going to jump out at buyers. By the same token, a fresh, sturdy, handsome mailbox that suits your home’s age and architectural style will create the impression that you are invested in spending time and money caring for your property.
Refresh Your Shutters
Shutters can be a charming feature on a home, invoking a Rockwellian sense of time and place. Unfortunately, dingy shutters, especially those that are flaking and peeling, will be off-putting to buyers. If your shutters are merely dirty, give them a good scrub. If they need to be stripped and painted, don’t put your home on the market until this task is completed.
If you’d rather start from scratch, you can save both time and money by installing board-and-batten shutters. This quick option can be assembled for no more than ten dollars per set, then stained or painted to perfectly suit your home. Even better, board-and-batten shutters can be hung on small hooks, making it a breeze to remove them for scrubbing or re-painting. Practical buyers will find this approach appealing.
Swap Out Old Hardware
Your front doorknob, knocker, and porch light fixtures should be new, matching, and stylistically appropriate for your property’s architecture. If you’ve reached the margin of your budget, you might prefer to use long-lasting outdoor spray paint to refresh the existing hardware. However, this approach takes more time, because priming and sealing are essential steps to achieving a professional look.
If your front doorknob feels at all loose, or the door lacks a strong deadbolt, there’s no good reason not to spring for an upgrade. A fresh coat of paint won’t convince buyers that you’re invested in maintenance and security after they’ve felt that wobbly handle.
Landscape to Land a Better Deal
Homes with updated landscaping featuring drought-resistant plants will appeal to millennials, most of whom are over the idea of investing time and water on bland expanses of lawn. If you have experience in landscaping design and installation, this project may be worth tackling independently. If you lack the time or experience, it’s worth hiring a professional with the specific goal of ensuring maximum ROI.
If your home’s landscaping is pleasant but generic, consider adding a selection of potted or installed plants to layer dimensions of color and texture. If your home’s front porch is dainty, hang plants to avoid taking up your limited square footage.
Maximize the Impact of your Front Door
A surefire tactic to stand out on a street of similar homes is installing a unique door or painting your existing door an arresting color. While the style and color should work effortlessly with your home’s style and scale, it’s a good idea to use this space to heighten the effect of your home’s best features.
Red is classic and snazzy, green suits a home surrounded by nature, blue is calm and welcoming, and black gives an all-white home a stylistic edge.
Create Dimension with a Front Porch
If your home was built during the 1940s, 1950s, or 1980s, it may have a flat, crisp exterior. To add unique dimension and create the illusion of a larger home, hire a contractor to install a front porch. Make sure the style you choose blends well with your home’s overall lines but don’t be overly concerned about matching nearby homes.
If your home already has a porch, but the structure has seen better days, your curb appeal is tanked. Posts, planks, and railings that are peeling, sagging, or rotting will make a buyer question whether you’ve maintained your home well overall. Before you place your property up for sale, renovate or rebuild your porch. Buyers may prefer the ease and durability of PVC-clad construction, and if it matches your home’s style, crown molding will give the whole project a custom feel.
Replace or Repaint Your Garage Door
A great-looking garage door will be somewhat invisible to a buyer at first glance, while an aging or dingy door will create an instant negative impression. A garage door replacement takes less than a day to complete, and repainting a garage door instead costs less than $100. Either way, this simple tactic can overhaul your home’s curb appeal nearly instantly.
Give Your Side Yard the Side-Eye
It can be easy to forget about your home’s side yard(s), but having clean, freshly mulched spaces will impress prospective buyers. This attention to detail will help convey your dedication to the overall care and keeping of your home—inside and out.
If you’ve recently been searching for the property that’s right for you, have there been homes whose curb appeal has stood out—whether for better or worse? Leave us a comment below telling us and your fellow readers about your first impression. As always, we appreciate you spending time with Parks.