Spring has sprung! Sellers–get ready for those buyers!

It’s Springtime!  My favorite time of the year is here!  All the rain we’ve had in San Antonio has brought out a bumper crop of beautiful Texas wildflowers this year!  Love seeing the bluebonnets along the road and in fields and even in people’s yards!  Hope you’re enjoying them while they last!

Speaking of flowers and spring green, it’s time to take a good look at your curb appeal if your home is on the market or is going to be on the market.  First impressions are lasting and you never get a second chance to make one!   Sellers, it’s important to capture those buyers when they first drive up by showing off your home at its best!  Here are some things you can do (or hire someone to do) to boost your home’s curb appeal and get those buyers in the door!

First thing:  take a good look at your home!  Go across the street and really look at your house with “buyer’s eyes”.  We all have things that we get used to in and around our own home that we don’t even think about any more, but buyers notice!  Make a list of the things you see that could be improved.  And, don’t forget to walk around and look at the back and both sides as well!  Pay particular attention to these items:

Paint–paint makes a huge impact and is probably the first thing a buyer notices.  What does yours look like?  Does it need some touch-ups?  Maybe it needs a complete re-do.  My neighbors just sold their house and have moved.  New owners are already pulling out ’80’s carpet and inside counters, etc., but I’m really hoping they’ll also paint that forest green trim on the red brick house!  And maybe even replace the green roof!   Does your home look like a blast from the ’60’s, ’70’s, ’80’s, or ’90’s past?  Bring it up to today’s look.   Even if the house doesn’t need painting, a fresh coat on the front door, the trim, garage door, can really make a good impression.  Peeling paint raises concerns that the rest of the house may need work too.  Why not bring people in the front door with a good feeling?

Roof–same thing goes for your roof.  Of course, if it’s leaking in spots or has missing shingles, it must be repaired or replaced.  But even if it’s still functioning, if the roof looks old and worn, consider replacing it–that will really make a buyer feel good and confident that he won’t have to deal with that problem for a long time.  If finances won’t allow you to replace the roof, consider offering a credit to the buyer so he can take care of that after the purchase is completed.

Driveway and walkways–should be in good repair and nice and clean.  Above all, for safety’s sake, you want to make sure there’s a clear path to the front door.  If you don’t have one, then make one.  And be sure your driveway and sidewalks are smooth and do not present a tripping hazard.  Power washing will clean most stains off the driveway and leave sidewalks, concrete, decks, and pebble finishes clean and fresh.  Sidewalks and driveways can have cracks due to shifting soils, tree roots, age, or other reasons.  Fill in cracks and be sure steps are clearly visible.  Keep toys and other things off the lawn and keep walkways clear.

Landscaping–last summer was brutal here in San Antonio–hot and very dry.  Many people, myself included, lost some plants due to the drought and extreme heat.  If you did, remove them and consider replacing them.  If you didn’t lose the whole plant, trim away the dead parts and tidy up what’s left.  Plant some flowers for color and just to look pretty.  Ask someone at the garden center to help you select drought-tolerant plants.  Keep grass mowed and edged.  Oak trees are pollinating now and will soon be dropping their pollen all over.  If you have trees in your yard, keep your walks swept and leaves raked.

Clean–this is a great time of year to spring clean the outside of your home as well as the inside.  If you’re not painting, wash the trim and the outside of the home to make it look fresh and appealing.  Wash windows so that light comes into the home and views can be appreciated.  Hard water builds up on windows and makes everything look dull–clean those windows and let the sunshine in!  Remember to wash the screens as well.  Wash down decks, patios, patio furniture, everything that people will see when they look outside.  Even if you’re planning to take the patio furniture with you when you move, clean it up so things look fresh.  And keep hoses curled up and out of the way.  Remember to check your sprinklers and repair anything that’s not working properly.  If you have automatic sprinklers, the inspector will test them so get them repaired now.  Also, remember to clean and polish light fixtures, fans, anything else that people will see when they walk outside.

Exterior lighting–many homes are now being photographed in the evening with the outside lights.  I’ve seen many pictures in MLS of a home lit up at night.  Consider installing some solar lighting along walkways or uplighting trees.  If you have tired front porch lighting, replace it with something more updated.  Timers on outside lights can keep them on and turn them off at a set time.

Hope this has given you some ideas of ways to improve your curb appeal and get buyers excited about coming to see your home!  Now that you’ve got the outside looking great, be sure to carry the feeling right in the front door and your agent will be putting up a SOLD sign before you know it!   I’d love to be that agent!  Call or contact me if I can help!

Good luck, and Happy Spring!