HOW TO PREPARE YOUR HOUSE FOR SALE: EXTERIOR
You only have one shot to impress a potential buyer when it comes to curb appeal. The exterior of your house is the first thing they will notice when they pull up. They will either think you take care of your property or think the house has been neglected. Which would you prefer? What can you do to ensure buyers fall in love with your house immediately upon arrival?
The first on this list is probably the most important one; fresh landscaping. If your trees haven’t been trimmed since your 13 year old child was born, now is the time to stop slacking and get it done. While you’re at it, go ahead and trim all the bushes as well. The last thing you want is your overgrown bushes slapping people in the face as they walk to your front door.
If the mulch in your flowerbed has turned to dust, head to the nearest landscaping center and pick up some fresh mulch. Black is a great color to go with. Oh and when you are there, don’t forget to pick up some colorful flowers to plant in the flower bed. It’s okay if everything you take home dies, if you do this right, hopefully you won’t need them to stay alive long. Or you better start praying God gives you a green thumb…
In all seriousness though, landscaping makes a huge difference. Trimmed bushes and trees, fresh mulch, and flowers go a long way with buyers. So make it count.
Hopefully you trimmed the bushes and the buyers made it to the front door without getting smacked in the face. But what will they see when they get there? An old wooden door whose stain has faded away like 100 year old barn wood? Or a beautiful masterpiece that shines like a diamond? You choose your fate.
After you are done soaking up all the sun in the flower bed, you should take a good hard look at the front door and determine if it needs to be re-painted or re-stained. If you refinish the door, it will look absolutely beautiful and make a lasting impression to potential buyers.
Alright here is where buyers are going to think you either totally suck at keeping up with your house or it’s made of gold. If you have any siding issues, it’s time to get it addressed. Like the fascia, soffits, rotted siding, the roof, the trim between the garage doors, etc… We live in Houston and the moisture tears things apart over time. Show off to the neighborhood and potential buyers that you know how to maintain your property better than everyone else. So once you get this taken care of, only then can you crack open a beer or pour yourself a glass of wine. Besides, any issues with siding, like wood rot for example, will show up during the buyer’s inspection.
Speaking of Houston weather, our area is prime for attracting algae. Now is the time to break out that pressure washer and start spraying away! If you don’t have one, then you can call someone to come out and do it for you. A few hundred bucks and you’ll have your house and driveway shining like a diamond. Areas you want to focus on are the siding, brick, stones, driveway, pool decking, sidewalks and windows. I wouldn’t recommend pressure washing your windows unless you want a giant mess to clean up, so just wipe them down with some Windex and paper towels.
Quick note here: If you have a pool, please make sure you keep it clean. The last thing you want is a buyer to come tour your house only to find a swamp of a pool. If the buyer wanted to purchase a swamp, they would go buy something South of I-10 in Louisiana.
Let’s face it… with the price of lumber today you pretty much need to be a millionaire to build anything. If your fence is in need of replacement, you probably need to take out a second mortgage to do it. Okay, maybe not that expensive. But replacing a fence is costly, so talk with your neighbors to see if they will go in half with you. If you can at least get some of it replaced it’ll be of big help. An expense like that isn’t something a buyer really wants to take on right after they close.
All jokes aside, do the best you can to make a great first impression for buyers when they arrive to view your house. You want them to think positive thoughts the whole time, not negative ones. If you can, hire out these tasks for someone else to do. It’s a lot to ask for someone to do all of this on their own. If you need any recommendations on who to use, reach out to us and we will be happy to refer you to the right contractor.
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