There are many good reasons to boost the “curb appeal” of a property – in other words, beautifying the exterior of the property. It can help you sell your home faster and for a higher purchase price. It can help you advertise a rental property to tenants, closing your vacancy faster and helping you make more money. It can also just make you prouder of your property and happier with the neighborhood.
Whatever your motivation, there are several simple tips that can help you drive up the curb appeal.
What to Do First
Before you start investing in a major curb appeal project, there are some important preliminary steps to take, including:
- Set a budget. How much are you willing to spend on this project? Curb appeal can boost your property’s value, but only to a certain degree. If you spend $50,000 making the exterior of your house prettier, you might not be able to make that money back.
- Set a timeline. How soon do you need that extra curb appeal? If you’re trying to fill a vacancy with a tenant, you’ll need to operate as quickly as possible.
- Set your limitations. Are you going to try and do all the work yourself? Or are you willing/able to hire contractors? Are there some changes that you’re simply not willing to make?
Clean or Replace the Siding
One of the best things you can do is clean or replace your siding. If it’s been a few years since you’ve given the exterior of your home a good power washing, now’s the perfect time to do it. In many cases, a few hours of power washing is all it takes to make your home look as good as it did the day you bought it. However, if cleaning isn’t enough and your siding looks damaged or faded, it may be necessary to replace the siding altogether.
Clean or Replace the Front Door
Whether they realize it or not, many people form their first impressions on a home when they see the front door. If it’s cracked, dirty, faded, or otherwise unpleasant to look at, it’s going to turn people away.
Depending on your situation, you may be able to resolve the problem by making repairs, power washing, and/or painting the front door. Otherwise, it may be time to make a full replacement; but don’t worry, it’s relatively inexpensive, especially if you’re doing the work yourself.
Care for Your Lawn
If your property has a lawn, spend some extra time caring for it.
- Mow. You should be mowing the lawn on a regular basis, but it’s especially important when you need to boost the curb appeal of your property. Keep it relatively low and even – and remove any extraneous grass clippings when you’re done.
- Remove eyesores. Comb through the lawn and look for any possible eyesores to remove. Pulling weeds, removing stones, and getting rid of unnecessary ornaments or items can instantly make your property more beautiful.
- Brighten the grass. Greener, brighter lawns tend to get more attention – and there are many ways to get one. For example, you can give your grass extra water and fertilizer to help it grow stronger, or you could use an environmentally safe spray to add some color manually.
- Trim trees and bushes. Don’t forget to trim any trees or bushes that are getting too long or unkempt.
Most people love seeing a colorful assortment of flowers. Depending on the setup of your house, you could add flowers to your flower beds or install new beds precisely for this reason. If that fails, you could use hanging baskets or other adornments to decorate your house.
Tend to the Driveway
Spend some time cleaning up your driveway as well. When taking photos, remove your garbage and recycling containers, and give the entire area a deep cleaning. You’ll also want to repair any unsightly cracks.
Clean (and Possibly Decorate) the Windows
If your windows look dirty, or if it’s hard to see through them, it’s going to leave people with a negative impression. Make sure you clean all the windows of your home so they’re perfectly transparent – and consider adding a bit of extra décor, such as small rows of flowers beneath the window pane.
Update the Lighting
Consider upgrading the lighting on the exterior of your home as well, especially if you have a full front porch. It can make the property seem more inviting, especially at night.
You don’t have to use all these curb appeal-boosting strategies, and some may not even be available to you. However, any effort you make to improve the beauty and charm of your property’s exterior can go a long way in helping you achieve your goals.