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2011-04-08 00:51:02
Improve Your Curb Appeal

10 Ways to Improve Your Home's Curb Appeal

by Real Estate on Thursday, April 7, 2011 at 11:10am

You know from experience, and everything you've read on the subject, that a home's curb appeal is what attracts buyers or tenants--a good first impression is vital. Following are some ways to improve the curb appeal of your home. Paint

Probably the cheapest fix for an old house that looks shabby is to repaint it. A couple coats of paint make even the dingiest buildings shine. Pick a color that makes the place look clean and attractive, not gaudy. Don't forget the trim. Use a color that compliments the primary paintjob. If you don't have the money to paint the entire house, consider adding new color to the front door or other parts of your home, such as a fence, deck, porch railings or shutters.

Give Your Lawn Some Attention

One of the first things a potential buyer will notice when they pull up in front of your house is the lawn. If it is sparse and looks like the local little league team held their tryouts there, you might want to think about improving it. Even if you have to add new sod everywhere, the investment may be well worth the extra cost. At the very least, ensure the lawn is mowed often and the tall grass is clipped around the trees. A good first impression is hard to beat. If the lawn looks well maintained, the buyer will assume you've cared for the house as well.

Plant Flowers or Shrubs

Simply mowing the lawn may not be enough to attract potential buyers. A few flowers planted discreetly around the yard could provide the special touches every yard needs. You don't have to plant an entire flower garden, just add small clustering of flowers to offset the dazzling green grass and catch a buyer's eye.

Add Lawn Ornaments

An arbor or a small statue may also enhance the lawn. Don't overdo it, though--moderation in everything. Make sure any lawn ornaments are part of the overall landscaping scheme, and don't appear to be simply thrown in to cover up a bare patch in the lawn.

Repair Fences

If you have a fence around the property, make sure it is in good repair. As with the house itself, a fresh coat of paint can work wonders. You'll also want to make sure the gates open smoothly, and are hung properly.

Wash and Repair Windows

This may seem like a simple thing, but if you paint the house and make the lawn presentable, what will people think if the windows are streaked, or cracked? Remember, you're trying to make a good impression, not deceive anyone. The overall 'look' of the house is important.

Clean Sidewalks

After a potential buyer gets out of the car in order to see the inside of the home, they will have to use the sidewalks. Ensure they're as attractive as the rest of the property by keeping them swept and washed down. If necessary, use an edger to make sure they are properly landscaped and free of overgrown grass and weeds.

Don't Block the View

What good does it do to spend all the time and money making the outside of your home as attractive as possible if the potential buyer can't see it? Remove any obstructions from in front of the house. Make sure the kid's bikes are put away and park your vehicles in the garage, not in the drive. If you have overgrown trees that block the view from inside and outside the house, have them professionally trimmed.

Resurface the Driveway

The driveway should be attractive, too. This could be costly, or at least involve some labor, but since you're intent on making the property as eye-catching as you can, resurfacing the driveway might be in order. A little elbow grease will go a long way in making the driveway look like new again.

Don't Forget the Details

Little things, like the porch light not working or the mailbox being rusty, can detract from any property's appearance. These things should be in good shape. The house numbers should also be clean and noticeable. After all, you want to make sure the buyer can find your property and properly enjoy the curb appeal you have created.

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