When home buyers drive your neighborhood, what do they see? You never get a second chance to make a first impression. Once and that’s it!
So, let’s make sure your home has the Wow Factor that makes people go “WOW!”
Before we start, take a walk around your property right now — front to back. Pretend you’re a prospective buyer.
Do you like what you see?
Seven tips for creating “WOW….!”
1. Front door
Get out your paintbrush and spruce up the front door. Replace old doorknobs and hinges with new ones. If your screen door squeaks or sags, get a new one or just remove it altogether to make your front door more attractive and visible and give your home great curb appeal.
2. Clean your home
Rent or buy a pressure washer and wash the exterior of your home. Wash your house, porches, stairs and decks. And don’t forget to wash your concrete sidewalks and driveways.
Also, while you’re power washing, make sure the windows get their share. Use an inexpensive vinegar and water spray, and wipe down with old newspapers. Give them the same treatment on the inside and the whole house will sparkle. Don’t forget about your sliding glass doors!
3. Polish all metal
Anything that’s metal on the outside of your home should sparkle and shine. Start with the house numbers. Exterior light fixtures should all be in good working order (replace burned-out bulbs) and should shine brightly, both in daylight and dark. How’s your mailbox? Make sure it’s clean and is not falling apart. New owners might appreciate one of the newer models with a security lock.
4. Kids and pets
You want your home to have the broadest possible appeal. Not all prospective buyers have children or pets, so if you do, it’s best to keep the evidence out of sight. Put away the bikes and balls. If you have play equipment, such as swings or a basketball goal, remove what you can or move items to where they are less visible. Be sure someone in the family is assigned to pick up after Fido and Fluffy too.
5. Plant flowers
You don’t have to have a green thumb to add seasonal color to the outside of your home. Think containers. Fill some containers with colorful plants and place them on the front steps or the front door. Be sure to replace as needed — it’s not appealing to see dead or dying plants! And, keep the grass mowed and your lawn edged.
There’s nothing more appealing than a well-kept yard that will make people go “WOW” and give your home great curb appeal.
6. Light up your home
Good exterior and interior lighting improves both appearance and security. In-ground spots can accent landscape elements or the house itself. Make sure the front walkway and driveway are well lit. If wiring is not an option, solar fixtures are relatively inexpensive and easy to install.
The right lighting can make a house stand out with great curb appeal.
7. Shutters are a plus
Shutters add a cozy feel, so if you don’t already have them, you might consider installing some. If you have shutters, reattach anything that looks saggy. Make sure they are freshly painted and clean. Depending on your home’s exterior, choose a contrasting color that stands out. Dark green looks great with yellow or cream. Black is great on stone or brick, and white is almost always a good choice.
As you plan your home makeover, keep in mind your neighborhood, competing homes that are on the market, and your budget.
And even if you have to spend a few dollars for professional help, the investment will pay off by attracting more buyers more quickly.