Your Home’s Value Reimagined From The Outside In
Curb appeal matters, and what you do to the outside of your home makes a huge difference at selling time.
Your kitchen has a full suite of matching appliances, plenty of cabinet space, and granite countertops. The master bath features a soaking tub. Each bedroom is the size of a small house. You’ve taken care of all of the interior details, but your home’s value — at least according to potential buyers — has fallen flat. Maybe it’s time to take your design efforts outdoors and focus on curb appeal.
Curb appeal in a nutshell
Curb appeal is really just the way your home looks as buyers are pulling into the driveway. If it appears plain or unkempt from the street, you’ve lost your only chance to make a good first impression. Improving your exterior appearance is not that difficult, and with a few weekend projects, you can turn your ugly duckling into the swan of the neighborhood.
One of the most impactful changes you can make to your outdoor space is to add a patio entertaining area. While you may spend upwards of $4,300 to get it done, if you only have a small area, the price could be as low as $1,212. To get an idea of what your actual cost might be, determine how much space you have – poured concrete costs between $5 and $18 per square foot. If you are on a budget, a smooth patio is the least expensive. Adding patterns or detailed accents will cost you a bit more.
If a deck is more appropriate for your space, say your yard is uneven or if you have a great view from the second story, you may wind up spending $15,000 or more. However, if you plan to be in the home for at least a few years and you want to get the big stuff out of the way, it’s a great investment.
When you have less of a fluid budget to work with, you can still make a big difference in your home’s curb appeal, but you’ll need to put on your work gloves and do a few things yourself.
Start by doing a thorough cleanup of your entire property. Don’t forget the sides of the home, and make a point to pressure wash the walkways, brick, porch, driveway, and play structures. If you don’t already have a pressure washer, you can usually rent one at the hardware store or check out the inventory at your local Tractor Supply or Home Depot.
When you have everything spic and span, head back to the hardware store for a few gallons of paint. Even if you’re not keen on climbing a ladder to paint the soffit and fascia, you should be able to tackle the shutters and front door. Watch the weather before you grab your paintbrush. Today’s Homeowner explains that depending on the type of paint you plan to use, the temperature should be anywhere from 40° to 90° with humidity at 40 percent to 70 percent.
Next, it’s time to address your landscaping. Look carefully at what you can pull up and replace. While an in-depth redesign of your landscaping is an option, you can make considerable changes by just adding new plants, using mulch, and trimming back overgrowth. You can even get the kids involved by having them do simple chores, such as pulling weeds and planting flowers.
Updating your home’s curb appeal not only makes it a better place for you and your family but can also help you retain and increase its value. Remember, buyers are not looking solely at the interior, and your outdoor space matters. If you are considering listing your home for sale this spring, talk to your realtor about outdoor upgrades that are popular in your area.
Contact Lucent Property Inspections for a comprehensive and affordable home inspection service you can trust in the Peoria & Bloomington area! 309-300-0007