Buyers form their first impression of your home before they even get out of their cars. This is “curb appeal,” or the view from the curb that tells the buyer how attractive and well-maintained your home is compared to other homes. In a competitive market, it takes more than trimming the hedges and planting a few flowers to create curb appeal. The exterior of your home must be in pristine condition – freshly painted, cleared of clutter, with no visible repairs needed. A broken step, overgrown bush, or abandoned toys in the yard can spoil the appearance and your buyer’s first impression.
Curb appeal is important because it sets the tone for what the buyer is going to see inside. If the buyer likes the exterior, he or she will be predisposed to also like the interior and you’re that much closer to selling your home. To see what needs to be done to sell your home faster and for a higher price, go outside, stand on the curb and try to look at your home the way the buyer will.
Walkways/driveways – Make sure walkways are clear of snow, weeds, or debris. Repair or replace cracked steps or pavers. Driveways should also be clear of vehicles, toys and debris. Park cars in the garage.
Landscaping – Keep your lawn mowed, edged and watered. Prune dead branches and plants. Weed flower beds and replace leggy, thin landscaping with fresh plants and flowers.
Exterior – Replace loose or damaged roof shingles, clean the gutters, and paint and caulk window trim and doors. Repaint the front door an eye-catching color that complements the rest of the exterior. Replace broken windows.
Entry – Power wash siding, brick, windows, and porches. Paint or replace furniture such as rocking chairs or porch swings. Replace mailboxes, light fixtures, door knobs or any other fixture that looks less than fresh. Put out a welcoming new floormat. Some parts of your home may require more work than others, but it’s well worth it to get buyers eager to see what’s inside.