Many people, as they break out of their winter, cabin-fever funk, decide that a new home is in order for their family. Many homes begin the process of being bought and sold in the spring, even though the actual buying of homes peaks in most markets around June. If you are in the market for selling your home, but aren’t sure how your home will perform, I have some ideas to share with you that can help bring in more buyers, higher offers and more money for your home.
The Importance of Curb Appeal
Curb appeal counts for so much when selling your home. Imagine prospective buyers driving by – you want them to look at your house and smile, feel welcomed and imagine that could be their own home. You don’t want to distract them with unpainted surfaces, broken siding, slanted gutters or a lack of landscaping.
An appealing home is one that people imagine as warm and inviting. When you see a home that is properly cared for with great landscaping and obvious signs of maintenance, you imagine the occupants as thoughtful, caring and even friendly! This may not be the case at all, but that is the essence of what you are trying to accomplish with improving your curb appeal.
Another reason for curb appeal is that buyers typically make an assumption a house that appears to be well-maintained from the front, is well-maintained throughout. This isn’t necessarily true, but it’s good to use it to your advantage. Think about if you looked at a house with a crack in the brick. You might immediately ask yourself what that might cost to fix, and then, you might ask yourself what other concerns are lurking in this house, not visible to me from the street.
Curb appeal is your “foot in the door”. You need people to determine whether or not they will spend any more time considering your house and the view they see from the curb (or likely, a photo online) will help them make that decision. So, while it is not the end-all-be-all, it can improve your overall chances of selling early and selling high.
The Keys to Creating Great Curb Appeal
There are a few common places to focus your attention and money in getting your curb appeal to its maximum potential, and they all can pay for themselves many times over in the elevated asking price of your home.
Tip 1 — Walk across the street
Pretend to be a buyer. Take a picture, look at it, write down notes. What do you see? What do you infer about the owners by what you see? If this is difficult, try it on a neighbor’s house first, one that is appealing and one that is not. This can guide your future efforts in improving your curb appeal. Are there bare spots of grass? Dirty windows? Saggy roof?
Tip 2 — Tidy up.
Clean up tools, wash windows, fix caulk, straighten gutters, clean siding, trim shrubs, trim trees, mow the lawn, pick up trash. Make the most of what you already have available and don’t let anything be an object of focus. If someone is wondering, hmm, should the gutters really slant that way? they aren’t thinking about how great your house is or how it would be to live there. A saggy roof might give them some pause to consider what hidden maintenance worries might be present in the house.
Tip 3 — Add color.
Plant flowers, paint your front door, paint the shutters, replace the siding. A splash of color can go a long way, especially if it coordinates with the house. Funky front door colors are a popular trend and can really draw the eye right to the focal point of the house. A siding refresh can be a curb appeal game changer as well, as well as a selling point to the future buyers that fresh siding has been professionally installed so there’s one less thing to worry about.
Tip 4 — Complete any major projects you were considering.
If you have been considering a roof, be assured that it’s a wise investment even if you are leaving the home. Studies have shown that you can recoup over 60% (or more) of the replacement price, and that’s not accounting for the increased speed and elevated selling price of the home due to your clean new roof with a great warranty. Other projects include repairing garage doors, concrete, porches, steps and new siding.
Tip 5 — Make sure your address is visible and eye-catching.
I have seen many houses not have great house numbers visible on the home. Invest in a great set of house numbers from your hardware store and get them mounted so your home is easy to identify. This is well worth the investment so people can actually find your house when they are looking!
Since spring has arrived and homes are being listed daily, if you are considering listing your home, I would recommend completing the list of tips shown here. If we can help at all with the exterior look of your home, don’t hesitate to call us at 888-776-1998 or setup an appointment set up today.