Everyone knows that first impressions last a lifetime, and it’s no different the first time a potential buyer lays eyes on your home. Don’t let a rundown or disheveled exterior stand between buyers and the charm inside your four walls. Take a walk to the curb, do an about face, and give your beloved home a serious once-over. Be honest about what you see, and take action! Below are 8 ways to make the outside of your home more appealing to its next residents.
1. Tidy up
Though it might sound obvious, one person’s idea of “neat” can vary drastically from the next person’s. You may think your reflecting ball and bird bath are cute accent pieces, but they may just look like clutter to someone with simpler tastes. When in doubt, it’s always better to lean toward a sleeker appearance and eliminate extras.
2. Paint, paint, paint!
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: nothing wakes up a tired facade like a fresh coat of paint. Paint is the least expensive way to make everything old look new again, and chipped or peeling exterior paint says “neglect” to buyers. If you can’t swing a whole-house paint job, make sure that doors, trim, porch railings and shutters receive a fresh coat.
3. Dress up the front door
Your home’s front door should entice buyers to come inside for a closer look. Make your front door pop with a bright color and boldly contrasting trim. Replace damaged or worn hardware, clean glass to a gleaming shine, and add a decorative wreath or swag that pays tribute to the style just behind the door.
4. Get symmetrical
Symmetry is not only pleasing to the eye, it’s also the easiest layout to pull off without a degree in design. Matching potted shrubs or sconces on either side of the door draw the eye in and give the front of your home instant polish.
5. Light up that landscape
Landscape lighting makes a huge impact on your home’s curb appeal and provides the added bonus of enhanced security. Use strategic placement of lighting fixtures to highlight your home’s unique architectural features.
6. Create a container garden
Container gardens add a welcoming feel and a splash of color much more quickly and easily than traditional flower beds. You can buy ready-made containers or create your own with your favorite plants. Just be sure not to go overboard. A few well-placed containers will work wonders.
7. Add shutters or accent trim
Shutters and trim provide that subtle “something” that your home’s facade is missing. Shutters emphasize your home’s windows and contribute to that symmetrical look mentioned above. Gleaming white trim says that you’ve taken care to maintain every part of your home, down to the smallest details.
8. Repair or replace gutters and downspouts
Nothing says “run down” like sagging, leaking or loose gutters and downspouts. If you can’t afford to totally replace them, a simple hammer and nails will work wonders to lift sagging areas and secure loose corners.