Considering selling your home? Make an unforgettable first impression by adding curb appeal value before putting it on the market. Here are exclusive tips from Long & Foster agents and managers on how to make your home, from your mailbox to your front door, more inviting to potential buyers, whether they are viewing it from a computer screen or your front yard.
Remove outdoor clutter: If your house looks well taken care of from the outside, it will attract more potential buyers to come inside. “Focus on the little things,” says Bob Albanese, senior vice president and regional manager of Long & Foster in New Jersey. Make sure you remove any debris, yard tools or toys. Adam Gelb, an agent in Long & Foster’s Bethesda, Maryland, office, also suggests that you avoid having cars in the driveway, especially if you know you are going to have a showing. Consider parking in the garage or even down the street.
Clean the outside of your home: Give your home a fresh, clean look by power washing the entire outside, including the sidewalk, driveway, garage, siding, fence, shutters and door – this is easy and inexpensive. “You don’t realize how dirty your home is until you get it power washed,” Gelb said. It may even save you a paint job. Avoid power washing the roof, however, because it can blow the shingles off. Instead, treat roof stains and discoloration with a roof wash to avoid unnecessary concerns and add curb appeal value. According to Albanese, there are several inexpensive roof sprays that remove mildew, algae and stains.
Landscape your yard: “When selling your home, landscaping and yard improvements are generally the biggest bang for your buck,” said John VanderSyde, manager of Long & Foster’s Strawberry Street office in Richmond, Virginia. To create an appealing look, consider cutting the grass, mulching the beds, edging and weeding your yard, trimming your shrubs and cutting the dead branches off your trees. Colorful flowers can also be a great addition.
Transform your front door: Invite your potential buyers in with an attractive, freshly painted front door. “The color of your door should pop and draw attention to the entry way,” suggests Albanese. A battered door with holes in the screen takes away from the curb appeal of a home. Nathan Carnes, manager of Long & Foster’s Chevy Chase Miller office in Washington, D.C., also stresses the importance of the front door’s appearance when selling a home, suggesting red might be the perfect color to attract your buyer. You may need to paint the trim and shutters if they are faded and battered as well.
Accessorize your home: Add character and charm to the outside of your home by accessorizing. By upgrading the mailbox and light fixtures, installing window boxes and pot planters, and adding outdoor furniture, you can improve the curb appeal value, increasing your odds of selling your property in a competitive market, suggests Hala Adra, an agent in Long & Foster’s Mclean, Virginia, office. “Make it easy for people to find the house address,” Gelb adds. Make sure the house numbers on your mailbox and home are legible and straight.
“Imagine yourself entering your home for the first time as a buyer,” Adra said, “What is distracting your vision from looking at the property?”