Real estate agent shakes hands with new homeowners

Selling your home? Boost traffic with curb appeal!

Spring typically brings out buyers and is a good time to sell a home, but in the buyer’s market with so many homes for sale, sellers have to work harder to get the buyers to come see the property. With so many homes to choose from, what can help your home stand out from similar offerings? Try fixing up the yard. Boosting curb appeal doesn’t require a green thumb; it just takes some elbow grease, or a short-term contract with a yard service. A small investment in the yard and exterior can bring buyers in to look. Think of it as a prettily wrapped package over a brown paper bag; it gets people interested in opening it up. Strong curb appeal can be your edge over the competition. Here are a few easy tips to make your home look its best on the outside.

Clean up
Fallen twigs and leaves, long grass, wild bushes, overgrown trees, and any dead or scraggly plant  can make a home seem messy, ill-cared for, or neglected. Do a big yard clean-up when the home goes on the market, and a quick touch-up before showings to remove and new debris.
Clutter is a big turn-off. It distracts buyers from all the positives, so clean out carports, sheds, and garages and make sure the trash is picked up or well out of sight in the bin. Take a good hard look at the walls, windows, trim, and gutters. A session of power washing and a fresh coat of paint can make an old or drab-looking home shine.

Green up
Nothing appeals to buyers quite like a green lawn. Take advantage of spring showers (or create a few of your own) to get your grass growing. Throw out quick-starting seed (shade to full sun varieties are available) to fill in thin lawns, and apply proper fertilizers and weed killers to boost growth and remove unwanted intruders like dandelions and other fast-spreading lawn-wreckers. Spread a thin layer of topsoil over bare or rocky areas before seeding to give the grass something to hold on to. Regular mowing and edgings keep the lawn looking sharp and help grass build better root systems for stronger growth.

Brighten up
Consider investing in a few new plants. Fill in bare walls or fence lines with hedge or shrub varieties, and add in some bright seasonal flowers. Fill areas around plants with fresh mulch or pine straw for a polished finish. Healthy, attractive plants and neat growing areas make a home look picture-perfect complete, and create a cheerful atmosphere.  Even the addition of a single colorful pot of blooms can make a doorway seem much more inviting.

Buyer’s time is limited, and with so many options, they often decide whether to go inside based on pictures and drive-by viewings. Homes with attractive exteriors get more attention, more traffic, and more offers than similar homes with dull exteriors. This spring, boost your home’s selling power from the outside.  A good first impression is priceless, and it all starts from the curb.

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About The Author: Geoffrey Thompson is an owner and founding partner of Colibri Real Estate, LLC. Since 1996 the companies under this banner have offered online real estate licensing and insurance licensing courses as well as online real estate exam prep and insurance exam prep.