Exterior Fixes and Curb Appeal
There’s no disputing the value of curb appeal. Various experts estimate a 5% to 20% increase in a property’s value from improving the landscaping alone. So how can we leverage this powerful selling tool? Better still, how can we increase curb appeal on a tight budget? Take a look at the proven tips below.
You can’t paint the entire house for under $100, but you can hit the trim and the front door fast and cheap. A little new trim paint goes a long way to improving a property’s curb appeal.
2. Put in new house numbers.
This curb appeal improvement is incredibly cheap and easy (starting at around $5 to $10). That said, new numbers convey an immediate subconscious message of a well-cared-for property.
3. Get a better mailbox.
A beaten-down old mailbox may escape your notice if you’ve seen it a hundred times. To a first-timer, a nice-looking mailbox will set a great first impression. Mailboxes are quick to install and they won’t break the bank. An excellent curb appeal booster.
4. Update exterior lighting.
Exterior light fixtures get dirty easily. They also corrode and collect bugs and cobwebs. Clean your exterior lighting, or to improve curb appeal even more, consider replacing it. For a bonus, add bollard lights along walkways. Some solar bollards cost $10 to $20 each.
5. Refresh landscaping.
Trimming hedges, weeding lawns, and pruning disheveled trees are all great ways to help your property’s curb appeal. Others are replacing old flower boxes or adding potted plants. Already got those things covered? Swap out old blooms with fresh, colorful versions for a fast makeover.
6. Fix up the driveway.
Driveways accumulate cracks and chips that can benefit from a touch-up without the need for a full replacement. Fillers and sealers take a short time to apply but ramp up curb appeal exponentially.
7. Rent a pressure washer.
Pressure washers don’t cost much to rent, but they can work real curb appeal magic. Pressure wash driveways, walkways and decks to remove dirt, grime, oil, algae, and mildew. This is a cheap, fast curb appeal perk.
8. Clean the roof.
We tend to tune out a property’s roof until it’s time to replace it. Yet roofs are prone to algae, lichen, and streaking. Cleaning a roof is a great way to increase a home’s curb appeal. The job can be as simple as spraying on a solution of soap and TSP, then gently rinsing it off again.
9. Get a second set of eyes.
As property owners, we tend to stop seeing all the things about our investment that lower its curb appeal. Invite a friend over for a quick walkaround. They’ll be more apt to notice things like a stray branch on a porch roof, marred paint on a front door, cobwebs, or loose downspouts.
10. Take great photos.
What do photos have to do with curb appeal? Maybe a lot more than you think. These days, the “appeal” starts online, since prospective buyers almost always start there. Pay careful attention to time of day, and take pictures on overcast days for best lighting.
Increasing a property’s curb appeal doesn’t have to mean big expense. Paying attention to little details like cleaning, weeding, trim paint and fixtures can mean a marked improvement in selling price. Approach your property with the mind of a buyer. Then knock off the easy, high-impact items first.
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