Curb Appeal - Attracting Buyers from the Street

Curb appeal is the term that brokers use to describe how a home looks from the street or curb in front of the home. The term mostly applies to single-family homes rather than townhouses or condos since most condo associations care for surrounding exterior and common areas of the condos. The street presence and curb appeal of your home is extremely important since it must impress prospective buyers. If a buyer likes what he or she sees from their car or from the sidewalk, they will be more likely to go up and take a closer look or perhaps even take a walk through your home.

Don't Take Your Curb Appeal For Granted

If you've lived in your home for a number of years, you may need to take a step back from the stoop to realize that you might be taking your home's curb appeal for granted. Taking a look at your home as an objective buyer rather than as the owner will allow you to see the cracks in the foundation, the peeling paint on the side of the house, or the missing roof tiles. If you have failed to account for these mishaps in your listing price, you might realize why your home is not selling while others on the block are.

Carefully reviewing the curb appeal of your home is important because homes often take on the personalities of their owners. Whether its that amazing flower garden, the knick-knacks on your windowsills or the color of your walls, your personality will definitely show through the years you've spent at your home. While distinctive personalities are fine, you must also be aware that it can narrow the appeal of your home. A dark colored home with bad lighting and poor ventilation can make your home dreary, cluttered, foul-smelling, and entirely unappealing.

Take A Step Back And Be Objective

Even if you go in and out of your house numerous times on any given day, you should take the time to walk to the curb, look back , and take a fresh look at your home. What do you see? The house should have a neat and trim appearance and be warm, open, and inviting. The exterior paint should be fresh or at least clean (consider using a power washer for vinyl siding). If your home looks drab or dreary, consider repainting it white-the color many brokers say sells the fastest. To perk it up, add a brighter color to the trim and window frames.

Next, look up to the roof and the gutters. The roof should be in good condition with no torn or missing shingles. The gutters should be clean and the downspouts should be in good repair. If it is spring, summer, or fall, or if you live in a warm climate, consider putting out wicker chairs, some potted plants, or a basket of hanging flowers. Make sure the mailbox looks clean and is in working order. The porch should look inviting so that prospective buyers can envision themselves relaxing there on a Saturday afternoon.

Maintain Your Curb Appeal

Finally, maintaining and enhancing the landscape of your home is incredibly important to the curb appeal of your home. Your lawn should be cut and manicured regularly. Bushes should be trimmed and flowers should be planted. If you are selling during winter, remember to shovel your walk and driveway after every snowfall so that buyers can not only get to your home, but so that they won't slip and fall on the way. Consider painting the fence, adding flower boxes, cleaning up that overgrown garden. In the end, making the curb appeal of your home better will only help it to sell faster after you decide to list it.

Just remember that cultivating a charming exterior won't sell your home if the interior is a mess. But certainly, it should at least help get those prospective buyers across the threshold.

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