First Impressions are Everything!

When selling your home, first impressions are very important. Many home buyers will drive by a property they looked at online to take a look. What will they see? The only thing they can see without scheduling a viewing is the exterior of the home - including the entryway, driveway, sidewalk and yard. Potential buyers will either like what they see on the outside and come back to take a closer look or they will look at the exterior and just keep driving, probably on to the next property. If you are selling your home you'll want to pay close attention to "curb appeal" so that potential buyers will be intrigued and want to take a look inside.

Curb appeal isn't just for home sellers. The entry to your home can set a welcoming and inviting mood for guests that are visiting your home. And when you and your neighbors all work on the curb appeal of your homes, it can make your neighborhood a very desirable location for buyers, potentially increasing your home values.

Do you want your home to make a great first impression? Here are a few things you'll want to consider:

Look Up- How is your roof looking these days? Most homeowners don't really think about their roofs until there's a problem, like a leak. However to a buyer, the roof is probably the thing they look at first. Is your roof streaked or missing shingles? Are your gutters full? You'll want to take care of these things to impress a future buyer but also for the health of your home, so that those small maintenance issues don't become costly repairs down the road.

The Numbers Don't Lie - It may not seem like a big deal, but making sure that your house numbers are visible and not dirty or dingy can make a big impact. If replacing your numbers, make sure they are visible from the street and that the style of the numbers matches the style of your home. Just think about it, if people can't find your house they probably won't buy it.

Act Like a Buyer- Get in your car and drive by slowly from both directions during the day and night. You might see something you've never noticed before. Walk up to the front door like a buyer, as well as around the property. Take some notes on things that could be repaired or replaced, or just spruced up a little.

Phone a Friend-Get a Second Opinion - We can get so used to our own homes that we can miss little things about it that may be unwelcoming to visitors or potential buyers. So, have a friend or family member come over and take a look. Ask them what their first impressions are. It can be very helpful to have another set of eyes, but be prepared to get some constructive criticism. :) It's also a good idea to have a professional take a look and let you know which things are most important to fix or repair and how much they might cost.

Apply Pressure- Pressure washing the siding, deck and driveway is a quick and easy way to make your home look like new again. Don't worry if you don't own a pressure washer. You can rent one at many home improvement stores.

Add a Little Color - When planning your landscape, choose a variety of plants that bloom during different seasons, as well as a few plants that will even be beautiful in the winter. This way no matter what season it is, there will always be something to add beauty to your landscape. Adding pops of color in pots, window boxes and planters is a great idea in the warmer months. Remove any dead or overgrown plants, and trim back trees and shrubs so everyone can see just how beautiful your home is.

Light up Your Landscape- Add some solar lights around the exterior of your home. Solar lights are easy to install and can be used to light the path to your front door or to highlight the best features of your home.

Open it Up and Let the Light In- You may never have thought about how your windows and window treatments look from the outside. Open curtains and blinds always look prettier from the street. And when you open all the curtains and shades, make sure that they are opened the same way to create a uniform look from outside. Go outside and take a look for yourself.

Add a Little Polish - New paint on the doors and shutters won't cost much but will give your home that polished and well kept look. You could also add a new light fixture or mailbox. Even something as inexpensive as a colorful, cheery doormat can make people feel welcome and add just the right finishing touch.

Don't forget to take a "before" picture before you begin working on your curb appeal, so you can can't appreciate the transformation! And be prepared for more visitors! Everyone will want to visit the most beautiful home on the block!

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