How Can You Add Curb Appeal Before Selling Your Home?

Posted on: 1 June 2015

The U.S. home sales market is booming -- with homes nationwide now selling at an average of 100 percent of fair market value. If you're considering putting your house on the market soon, nothing can help it sell more quickly and for a higher price than making the exterior as photogenic as possible. However, you may be reluctant to pour a large amount of money into a home you hope to soon no longer own, particularly if you feel you'll already have an easy time selling your home for its true value.

Read on to learn more about the importance of improving the curb appeal of your home in a seller's market, as well as two relatively quick and effective fixes for your home.

Why is curb appeal important in a seller's market?

Although sales are booming and sellers are often able to choose between offers (rather than having to wait months for a single serious bid), these markets are still subject to regional fluctuations. If there are a number of comparable properties for sale in your area, those that have recently made noticeable improvements will likely sell before those that need some freshening up.

In addition, if you live in a hot market and would like to incite a bidding war on your home, potential buyers will feel more comfortable stretching to a higher price (and higher mortgage) if they're assured they won't have to make any improvements to your lawn and home's exterior.

What can you do to add curb appeal before selling?

The methods that will give you the best bang for your buck involve quick but long-lasting improvements that require little maintenance going forward.   

  • Paint your home's exterior

Although your real estate agent may recommend you give the inside of your home a fresh coat of paint if it hasn't been painted in the last few years, often the exterior of your home can benefit even more from this treatment. By painting your home with a "smart coat" type of paint that resists fading, peeling, and chipping, you can help your home look new again, as well as stand out from the surrounding homes in a positive way.

Not only will this refreshed exterior get potential buyers in the door, you'll be able to use the durable and low-maintenance paint as an additional selling point. With the popularity of home remodeling and real estate networks, many potential buyers want an essentially maintenance-free home. Knowing that they'll need to do nothing but occasionally power-wash their siding for the next few decades can go a long way toward your desired sales price.

  • Convert to a low-maintenance lawn or hardscaping

If your current lawn requires quite a bit of TLC to achieve a uniform look, you may want to consider converting at least a portion of it to low-maintenance hardscaping or another type of ground cover that doesn't require frequent mowing, watering, or pruning. Hardscaping often involves the use of large decorative rocks, pea gravel, and hardy ground covers like moss and sedum in place of grass. Many hardscaped lawns also incorporate a gazebo or patio-type surface in place of a portion of the lawn.

In some cases, having your home professionally hardscaped may actually cost less than a summer's worth of new flowers, lawn watering, lawn mower maintenance (or paying for someone to mow your lawn), and professional weed killing services.

Converting to hardscaping can also help reduce the incidence of illness-causing pests (like mosquitoes, ticks, and other parasites that thrive in dark and moist areas. This can help your home appeal to a variety of potential buyers, including those with young children and outdoor pets. Both hardscaping and painting should help give your home a unique and updated look that will help it sell quickly -- for at or above the listing price. Check out a go to website to find out more information.

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