For some readers, this will be fairly easy because they live in neighborhoods with Homeowners Associations. One of the benefits of living in a neighborhood governed by a Homeowners Association, say real estate agents in Chapel Hill, is that these groups often dictate how you are supposed to keep up your property. They have strict rules about, for example, allowing toys to be left outside, artwork in windows, etc.
But what if your neighborhood hasn’t developed a Homeowners Association or yours doesn’t set those types of rules? Here are some tweaks and polishes you can make to increase your home’s curb appeal–without spending a ton of money!
Keep It Clean
When was the last time you washed the outside of your house? Did you even know you need to regularly wash the outside of your house? If it’s been a while (or never), hire professional cleaners to come and give the outside of your home a good power washing. You’ll be amazed at how much better a house can look after all of the dust and grit that builds up over time gets blasted away.
And don’t forget to take care of your driveways, front walks, etc!
Keep your lawn mowed. If your lawn is in bad shape consider mulching or bringing in new sod so that you can regrow a lawn that is healthy. This doesn’t just help your home look good, it can actually increase its value!
If you don’t have a lawn, make sure that whatever is going on in front of your home is kept up neatly. Keep container gardens weeded. Keep wood chips, rocks, etc. looking clean and smooth. Take care of any weeds that pop up.
Since we’re on the topic, when was the last time you really looked at your home’s landscaping. Take some time to trim your hedges, prune your trees, etc. If you have flower beds that have been neglected, put in some new and vibrant flowers (you can buy flats of flowers at your local nursery or garden supply store for less than you would probably spend taking your family out to a movie.
If you’ve never done more than simply keep the lawn mowed, consider creating some flower beds, planting some bushes or hedges, maybe adding a container garden or two. Healthy plants signal that you care enough about your home to put real work into it on a regular basis.
Clear It Away
Make sure that any toys, lawn furniture, sprinklers, bicycles, scooters, etc., get put away when they aren’t being used. Sure, a pile of bikes on the front lawn shows that kids are welcome in your home, but if that pile of bikes is still there in a couple of days when a prospective buyer does a second drive by (and they will) or shows up for a viewing? They’ll likely move on to another property.
Keep your garage and carport organized. Messy garages and carports signal a lack of care to prospective buyers. They also make those spaces look smaller than they actually are! You want someone driving by to see how much space they’ll have for all of their own projects!
Take some time to clean and treat your window treatments. Wash the curtains, wipe down the blinds, clean out the window sill wells. Replace anything that is broken or old and shabby looking. You might love your current set of curtains and that’s great! Pack them up so they’ll be ready to hang in your new place, and put something better looking in your windows. You can always leave the new stuff there for the next owner.
To save money on this, make use of stores like Target, Home Depot, etc. that sell repair supplies. Putting new mesh into a screen frame is much simpler and cheaper than buying a whole new screen. They also often have cheap but still good looking blinds, shades, and curtains that you can put up if those things are needed.
Remember: first impressions matter! Make sure that your home looks inviting and well cared for no matter what day or time someone decides to drive by to check it out!