Nowadays, a lot of focus is put on “staging” a home – prepping the interior of a property so that it’s appealing, eye-catching and impressive to potential buyers. Often, this includes buying or rearranging furniture, hanging art, or even repainting rooms that need a little extra oomph.
And while this is often a smart undertaking, helping properties to stand out, command a higher price and sell faster, staging isn’t the only way to a fast and lucrative sale. In fact, putting some of that time and effort into a home’s curb appeal can help just as much – if not more.
What is curb appeal? Put simply, it’s the way a property looks from the curb, if you were walking or driving by it. It includes the yard, the front garden, the paint, the brick, the front porch, the door, the trees and even the driveway – everything a potential buyer would see upon visiting your home.
In the days before the internet, curb appeal was about all that mattered in real estate. It was only the front of a home you’d see on flyers and in advertisements, and a buyer’s choice to enter a home and tour it depended solely on whether they liked its outer “look” when driving by.
Today, the internet has allowed the interior of for-sale homes to play a larger role, but curb appeal is still one of the most important factors in a home’s sale. Here’s why:
- It’s your first physical impression. Regardless of whether a potential buyer sees the inside of a home online first, when they arrive to tour the place, the curb appeal is the first thing they’ll notice. It’s what will stick with them long after they leave, and it will set the tone for the entire tour. Great curb appeal will get them excited and hopeful; a poorly maintained outside will do the opposite, making them hesitant and unsure about going forward.
- It speaks to the whole aesthetic of the home. A home’s curb appeal can set the tone for the entire aesthetic of a place. If a home has a more vintage look, quaint shutters, a white picket fence and other throwback touches can alert buyers to that. If it’s more modern, angular hedges, a clean façade and a wrought iron fence can give it a more contemporary air from the second buyers step foot on the property. It’s a great way to extend the aesthetic of the home and really impress a buyer.
- It helps a home stand out. Many neighborhoods nowadays are cookie-cutter. Home after home has the same layout, the same brick and the same overall look. With curb appeal, you can make a property stand out from the pack. Flowers, trees, a fresh coat of paint and other outer elements can help a home get noticed for the instant a buyer drives on the street.
- It makes a house feel like a home. Curb appeal can go a long way it taking a house from just a “property” to a real-life “home” a buyer can imagine themselves in. Sure a blank, empty yard leaves lots of possibilities, but a lush, landscaped one with bright shutters and a potted plant on the doorstep? That just feels like home, and that’s what a buyer is looking for in a potential property.
- It shows a homeowner’s pride in the property. Potential buyers want to see that previous owners loved a home – that they took care of it and took pride in it – and curb appeal can give pretty great insight on this. A home with beautiful, well-maintained curb appeal shows the owner cares for their home. A down-trodden lawn, rotting siding or other unfortunate signs point to the reverse – that the buyer didn’t care much for their property or their home.
- It speaks to the maintenance of the home. Along the same lines, curb appeal can also speak to how well maintained a home will be. If the outside isn’t maintained, a buyer is going to assume the inside follows suit. That means more work, a less beautiful home and probably a less likely sale. Great curb appeal, however, can show that a home is likely maintained both inside and out, and that there are few problems lurking below the surface. That’s a win-win for any buyer.
Are you considering selling your home? Then make sure to pay close attention to your curb appeal. Head across the street, and look at your home from an outsiders’ perspective. What could you do to up the ante? What would a potential buyer see and think?
Need help improving your curb appeal? Contact an agent at The Claus Team today. We’ll help get your home market ready so it sells fast – and at a great price. Call us now to get started.