|Real Estate Information|
First, lets start with what it is. Curb appeal is quite simply the rate of attractiveness your home projects to viewers from the street. Why is this important? As the definition states, it is the ultimate first impression. You may have an immaculate, luxurious interior but without high curb appeal, few will bother to step inside to see it. This is even more important when selling on your own because you don't have a realtor to hype the interior as worth a viewing.
Is it worth the trouble to invest, if you don't have good curb appeal? The payback value on exterior upgrades to your property range from 49% for landscaping improvements to 62% for exterior home improvements, such as painting. Next to the kitchen and bath, these are the highest payback ratios for home improvements and are well worth the initial investment.
In the order of highest payback value, we have provided some tips to help you achieve higher curb appeal for your home:
Painting the exterior may appear daunting and not worth the effort, but research shows that it results in the greatest return on time and money for exterior improvements.
As a guideline, when choosing color, a long and low house looks most appealing with colours that emphasize vertical elements such as doors and shutters, while taller more narrow homes should contrast its horizontal elements likes fascias and gutters. Window boxes are a nice touch as well.
If painting is out of the questions, the bare minimum improvements should be to:
Wash the full exterior to clear it from dirt and cobwebs. Renting a high pressure washer is best. Fix any loose, missing, or damaged shutters. Clean, paint, or replace mailbox, doorknobs, and street numbers. Windows
Especially with a freshly painted or washed exterior, dirty windows will stand out like a sore thumb, and will date them past their true age.
Tips for cleaning windows - Do not clean windows while they are in direct sunlight. Your cleaning solution will dry too fast.
Using a 100% cotton cleaning cloth, dip the cloth in cleaning solution and wring out excess before wiping the window to loosen dirt.
Using a squeegee, start each stroke in a dry spot, and squeegee in a pattern from top to bottom or side to side. If you are cleaning the outside and inside of the window, alternate the pattern on each side (i.e. top to bottom on the inside and side to side on the outside). This will make it easier to identify which side any streaks are on.
Keep your squeegee blade dry by wiping it with a cleaning cloth between strokes.
Nicks in the squeegee blade will cause streaks. Replace when needed. If you do not have a squeegee, newspaper will dry freshly washed windows, whereas papertowel or cotton will leave lint behind.
Cool clear water is the choice of solution by most professional window washers. For very dirty windows, add 2 tablespoons of vinegar per gallon of water.
Homeowners should plant colorful flowers along walkway leading to the door, prune existing trees, shrubs and bushes, and add fresh mulch. Clean out dead plants and weeds from flower beds and refresh with colorful plants and annuals.
Taller plants at the corners of your house will help anchor it with the landscape. Shorter plants near your home's entry bring attention to your front door. However, this could have a negative impact if the front door is in need of repair (another reason to rethink the exterior improvements noted previously).
Last but most definitely not least and probably most important, ensure your lawn is trimmed and green. If you have a lawn in need of attention, you may want to consult a landscaper for advice before trying to repair on your own.
Some further touches that will go along way to increasing the appeal of your home from curbside are:
Outdoor lighting - Exterior lighting in your garden, walkway or entrance area add a warmth and welcome feeling that will make a viewer want to see more.
Indoor lighting - While your house is on the market, leave lamps on in 1 or 2 front rooms. It brings the home to life and, again, provides the same warmth and welcome feeling as the exterior lighting. Exterior lighting alone will not provide the appearance of a well loved, lived in home, like the combination of exterior and interior lighting can.
Furniture - As long as the chairs are well kept and not cluttered looking within the space, two chairs on a front porch provides a tremendous visual appeal from the street. Buyers view the exterior as an extension of the home and will want to view more.
The best advice for creating great curb appeal, is to take a walk through your favourite neighbourhood. Analyze what works really well and what doesn't. Then determine why and incorporate those items to fit your own exterior. Most of all enjoy the outdoors and don't get too overwhelmed by the work at hand.
© February, 2004 - Xstream Realty Incorporated
Amie Walton is the president and founder of Xstream Realty Incorporated, a Virtual Agent online real estate service. She has retained her ASP designation in Home Staging and is managing both XstreamRealty.tk and XstreamStaging.tk as complementary businesses for assisting homeowners to sell their homes quickly and profitably.
Preparing for a Showing
As soon as you decide to put your home on the market, all sorts of sprucing-up are in order. But let's assume you've already scrubbed to a fare-thee-well, touched up a bit of paint, cleared most of the stuff off your kitchen counters and straightened out your closets.
Spanish Estate Agents and Inspection Visits
The only way to buy a home in Spain is during an inspection visit. If you are serious about buying a property, and are in a position to purchase, this is the most effective way to ensure your find the ideal home, in the ideal area at the right price for you.
Realtors - Self Promote Your Way To Success
Okay, so we all can agree - listings are the lifeblood of the real estate industry. And if the keys to selling them are location, location and location, then the challenge in getting them is self-promotion.
Building A Home? Want To Ask A Builder The Right Questions - Not The Dumb Ones!
These are real builder questions that I got from readers of my e-book, "Residential Development Made Easy" with answers from a major USA Master Builder operating in 48 States.Question 1.
How To Sell A Home That Didnt Sell
If your home has just come off the market and hasn't sold, don't be discouraged. The reason it didn't sell may have nothing to do with your home.
The Letting Agents Role
Letting agents play an important role in the buy-to-let industry and a good agent can help make or break your lettings experience. So what should you expect from your letting agent?Professional reputationTo attract good tenants, the agent needs to be well established in the local area and have a good reputation.
Dont Sell It Yourself
Don't sell it yourself! Sometimes a "FSBO," or house "for sale by owner" can sell as fast, and for as much as it would have if listed with a real estate agent. Sometimes.
Secrets of Making Money from Real Estate - Part 2
Leverage: With real estate, people and companies will lend you money to invest. How much real estate can you buy with $20,000? Probably between $100,000-$300,000, depending on the lender.
Finding The Perfect Maui Home For Sale
If you are thinking of relocating to Maui, this article will hopefully guide you to making a positive decision when thinking of buying a home there. Hopefully, by the end you will be one step closer to finding a Maui home for sale, and being able to purchase it.
Should I Invest in Real Estate While Running an Internet Business?
Of course you should. I practice this for quite a while and I never looked back.
Avoid The Traps Of Finance
Most consumers are told where to get their mortgage because few people personally know and trust a mortgage or loan officer or correspondent (the same thing). It used to be agents would take their buyers out to find the house they wanted, then to their favorite mortgage company.
Is 100% Annual Return On Investments Possible With Low Risk Land Investments?
In last week's article, we discussed how substantial profits could be made by investing where baby boomers may want to relocate or buy a second home. This seemed to confuse readers since they were thinking that our web site is about preconstruction and preconstruction to them means buying condos?? In this article, I hope to broaden your horizons considerably.
Real Estate Investing with Bad Credit!
By being creative, you can play the game of real estate investing by using what is called Option's investing.This is just one technique of the Option's strategy of investing but can be a power tool in your investors toolbox to help you control more real estate and build wealth.
Questions To Ask The Landlord Before Renting His Apartment
Apartment hunting is not the easiest thing around. You may find places not suited to your tastes or those which do are not to your budget.
Buying and Selling Real Estate in Florida
Florida is known as the "Sun Shine" state, and the reason is clear. People move to Florida for many reasons, but most that move there stay there.
For Sale By Owner - Use This Tip To Sell Your Home Quicker and At a Better Price
Your house is for sale by owner (fsbo), Along with columns of countless other FSBO's in the Sunday paper. This one little trick will enable you to have your Ad Noticed by more potential buyers.
Most of us don't talk about money, finances, credit, debt..
Finding a Great Listing Agent for Your Home: 8 Tips
If you've decided to list your home, you'll be paying a real estate agent a significant amount of money to the hard work of selling your home. Therefore, you have the right to expect prompt attention, good service, and protection.
Home Owner Association Restrictions - Read Before Buying
Many communities have associations for homeowners, property owners, condo owners, or similar associations. The presence of a homeowners association, also known as "HOA", introduces another layer of rules and regulations to consider when buying a home.
Selling Your Home - Be Sure It Shows Well
Whether you are selling a house, townhouse, condo or apartment, there are universal tips that will help it sell. Primary among those tips are making sure your home "shows well.
|home | site map|