In real estate, first impressions go a long way in determining the appeal and value of a property. Not only does improved curb appeal help find buyers, but it also increases the value of your property. Most homeowners are so focused on what they need to improve on the interior that the exterior is often overlooked or ignored. With spring right around the corner, now is the time to consider what needs to be done to boost curb appeal. A few simple exterior tweaks and upgrades can turn an average looking home into one that jumps off the page. Here are a few exterior updates that will boost curb appeal and ultimately improve your property value:
- Garage. If you are fortunate enough to have a garage on your property, you need to take full advantage of it. Most homeowners spend very little time thinking about their garage. However, it is one of the first things that is noticed by buyers. Start by giving the garage a fresh coat of paint. It is always amazing how much a fresh coat of paint can change the look and feel of the garage. Next, replace any rusting or outdated door handles. You should also make sure that the garage is clean and functional. There are several inexpensive garage storage options that can enhance the appearance and usefulness. If all things are equal, the garage can be the item that pushes a buyer over the top.
- Walkway. Every step that a buyer or appraiser takes on the way into the property is a chance to form an opinion. If the front walkway is old or outdated, you run the risk of establishing a negative first impression. There are several minor things you can do to enhance an average walkway without breaking the bank. Making use of pavers, bricks, or stones to edge the walkway can often quickly change the appearance. At a minimum you want the walk to be free of any obstructions, cracks, holes, or other issues that can create a negative opinion.
- Landscaping. Landscaping is often the very first thing that buyers notice when they approach your property. Fortunately this can typically be an easy and relatively inexpensive fixes. Start by making sure there are no weeds in the driveway or any plants and trees that create an eyesore. From there, focus on shrubs and bushes that may be overgrown on your way into the property. Removing these can be pricey but it doesn’t take much to trim and clean them up. Look for places you can drop a fresh layer of mulch and maybe add some color through use of plants or flowers. Keeping the grass green can be a challenge, but if you stay on top of routine maintenance for a few weeks, you can often see an immediate improvement.
- Siding/Paint. As you walk the exterior of the property, pay attention to the condition of the siding and paint. Cleaning the siding can be as easy as renting a power washer and spending an hour soaking the house down. Fixing chipped and cracked paint spots is more difficult, but even those may not require a full exterior paint job. However, if you have the capital to give the exterior a fresh coat of paint, it can be considered an excellent long term investment as long as you stay neutral with the colors.
There are dozens of other ways you can improve curb appeal from changing the front door to replacing the shutters. With spring quickly approaching, now is the time to start thinking about ways to improve the exterior of your property.