Curb Appeal. Great curb appeal will add value to your home, whether you are selling or not. If the houses on the street appear well kept, property values will be better than in an unkempt neighbourhood. When houses on your street sell for more money, the value of your home will increase. Keeping your house tidy on the outside will help theirs sell for more money. Ready to sell or not these are great tips to keep up the curb appeal, from budget friendly to splurges they will increase the value of your home, now and years to come.
1) Driveway. Remove oil and other stains. Remove any grass or weeds that are growing through cracks. Fix driveway sags, especially if it affects the roof-line of the garage. The driveway is one of the first things a buyer sees and perceives as being a large expense that they don’t want to deal with. The entire driveway doesn’t necessarily have to be dug up, there are companies that will lift sagging or sinking concrete. Driveways can also be resurfaced.
2) Grass. Ensure that it is weed free (no dandelions popping up) and not dried out & brown. Water, weed, and cut the grass. It is also important to trim the grass for a polished & finished look. Low maintenance drought resistance gardens are a great way alternative to watering the grass all summer.
3) Flower beds. Add mulch and drought resistant, low maintenance plants. Make sure that it is weed free and there are no dead plants/flowers. Spend some time trimming, an overgrown flower bed will give the appearance that the place is not well kept even if everything is alive and well. Landscaping companies will do everything from tidy up your yard to a consultation on what would add value to a full makeover.
4) Plant a tree. Trees help with the overall look of the landscaping. Mature trees add value and resale-ability to your home. Deciduous trees planted on the East, South, and West side of your house will provide shade and greatly reduce cooling costs. Coniferous (spruce) trees will add interest all year round. If your yard has trees, make sure that they are trimmed. Remove any dead trees or shrubs, trim off all dead branches.
Evergreens in the winter:
5) Exterior Siding. Ensure that paint is not pealing off anywhere – patch or repaint. Stay neutral and within the expectations of the neighbourhood when choosing paint colors. Repaint brick if it is looking outdated. If you are not re-painting the house make sure that it is clean. Replace any warped vinyl siding – it is quite inexpensive to have a couple of pieces replaced.
6) Front door. Check to make sure that the hinges do not squeak, and the lock and latches work well. Does it need replacing, painting, or a good clean? Make sure it says “welcome home” and not “stay out”. A brightly coloured door can add an inviting appeal, help your house stand out, and add a modern flair. Don’t forget the hardware – a quick spray paint or replacing old hardware will give the door a brand new look. Repair any torn screens.
7) Landing/Front porch. Ensure that your front landing is not overly cluttered. Tasteful potted planters, benches, a chair with a nice pillow can be used to stage your front landing, creating a welcome feeling. Clean. Clean. Clean.
8) Windows. Clean windows inside and out. Ensure that window sills are clean. Although curtains are an interior item – they are seen from the exterior – make sure they are tidy and appropriate. No flags or sheets for window coverings. Window boxes and shutters can add a punch of color and make windows appear larger. Check that all screens are in good repair.
9) Mail box. Is it old and rusty? Dated? Spray paint can usually fix up a mail box in minutes. You can find a replacement very inexpensively or splurge on that special accessory.
10) Garage door. Clean, Paint, or Replace door and trim. Oil if it’s squeaky and make sure all garage door openers are in working order. If you have glass doors – frost the interior side so that the items inside the garage are not visible from the street. Match the style of the house/street to the style of the door. Check out this freshly painted garage door:
11) Garbage cans. Although a necessity, try not to have them out in front. Deodorize if they are carrying an odor, this will be especially important in the warmer seasons. Pick up any garbage on or near your property.
12) Light fixtures. Updated, clean, and matching light fixtures help curb appeal day or night. Choose lights that work with the style of your home. Light fixtures can also be painted for a new modern look.
13) Fence. Paint if necessary. Clean and tidy is the theme. A picket fence can add charm, as long as it fits with the style of the house.
14) Roof. If the shingles are peeling up then it’s time to look into replacing them; this is a bigger ticket item but it will turn away buyers pretty quick if that’s the first thing they see. Replace damaged downspouts, paint or replace mismatching downspouts and eves trough.
Before and afters: