Tips to Help Your Curb Appeal
You have certainly heard the term “curb appeal.” If you have decided to sell your primary
home, this will be on your mind. Every real estate article will tell you the importance of having
great curb appeal. Well, what does that mean? Is it truly just pretty flowers and a mowed
lawn? Yes and no!
Buyers are attracted to the yard, but to capitalize on the visual appeal of your home, you need
to go further than a few border pansies. During my 17 years working in the Greater Cincinnati
area suburbs, I’ve watched as potential home buyers reacted to seeing a nice, inviting front
Curb appeal starts on the drive up. I’m sure you have driven down a street and hoped that the
listing you’re going to see isn’t the purple house with the peeling paint. Now that’s an
extreme, but it illustrates the point. Buyers will see your home from a distance before they
even park. In addition, the look of the community becomes more important as the price range
Drive down the street and up to your house. What is the first thing you see? Using a critical
eye, pay attention to the way the home appears from the street. Are the plants trimmed and
fresh? Are you missing roof tiles, or could the trim use touch up paint? Does the home seem
welcoming and warm?
Now walk up to your front door. It should be easy to access from the driveway and street. The
front door should be open to the street and well lit. Cut back tree limbs or heavy vines which
block the view to the street. The most common need is a simple garden sprucing – a weekend
project for most sellers.
Many homes have great front yard spaces; if you have a front porch, take advantage of it. Use
staging techniques and add some chairs and flowerpots. Demonstrate to the buyers the
relaxing lifestyle your home offers. Again, make sure there is adequate lighting and an airy feel
to the porch.
So, what if you are on a busy street and can’t create a quiet, peaceful entrance? In this case,
you might need to take larger steps. Remember that selling your home is one of the largest
financial transactions in your life. It might make sense to put a little money into your home to
realize the greatest financial gain and sales price.
You might consider a fence or natural landscaping to create privacy. While this goes against
the previous advice to have the home open and visible to the street, if the need is to have a
more peaceful environment, then it could make a difference. Street noise can be muffled by a
relaxing fountain. Turning the entry into a private front courtyard could show buyers that your
home offers an oasis from the hustle and bustle going on around you.
Curb appeal is just using your sense of home and translating that into a front entrance to your
home. At a minimum, everything should appear to be low maintenance and tidy. If you are
unsure about what else to do, talk with your agent. If you have a unique challenge, then
bringing in a professional stager could also make sense.
Buyers fall in love with a home from the driveway. Curb appeal beckons your buyers inside to
see your special home.