Paula Lopes' Blog
101 Sonny's Way, Dighton, MA 02715
What is curb appeal? The definition is a different concept for everyone, no doubt. First, let's state that it is not a bundle of money you do not have spent to impress someone you do not know. However, it’s purpose is to attract people you do not know. Well, at least that is the purpose when it comes to real estate and the selling of real estate. It also is a standard that may be set by the HOA to maintain the values of the homes in the neighborhood. Those standards may be why they only want certain colors used to paint exteriors or require that the grass not exceed six inches in length, etc.
If you want to have a home with curb appeal, the simplest and easiest way is to take care of the everyday chores. A home stops being attractive as things are left undone. So let's try first to keep it picked up. It's kind of like your kid's room. If one toy remains on the floor, it still looks okay, but a week later if one additional toy remains on the floor every time toys have been played with the room is a mess.
So let's keep things picked up. If some trash has blown through, do not just ignore that plastic bag stuck to a tree, pick it up. If you see a weed or two in the garden, do not just say "I will take care of that on Saturday" because by then it could be 50 weeds and now it is a big project. If you cannot afford a regular gardener, then you must put mowing the lawn and trimming the bushes and trees into part of your regular schedule. Do not leave everything to the weekend. Everyone wants to do something fun on the weekend and not work. Take 30 minutes every other day to trim a bush, rake some leaves or mow the front yard. Just keeping a front yard trimmed and picked up keeps the "curb appeal" high.
If you want to take curb appeal up a notch, you can go to your local hardware/garden shop and get a few flowering plants and some inexpensive pots and place those decorative plants in the flowerbed and along the sidewalks and steps. Basic color gives a great new look. Do not forget to keep them watered, especially if your sprinkler system does not reach them.
Finally, paint. If you do not have any leftover paint, take some time to get a little quart of exterior paint that matches the trim and doors. You do not always need to do a complete paint job; sometimes a simple touch up here and there keeps a house looking fresh. If your home is brick or siding, once every three to six months - depending on the weather in your area - wash the house. The home lives outdoors in the rain and wind and sun and collects stuff. That stuff makes a home look dingy and drab. Wash it off. You will think you have a new home.
Keeping your home's "curb appeal" takes a little time and care. But when you are ready to sell, it is not nearly as much work to get it ready for market. Enjoy your home and treat it well. Invest in its upkeep, and it will treat you well when you are ready to sell.
129 Sonny's Way, Dighton, MA 02715
When you own a condominium, even if you’re entrance is street level, you're not really in charge of the common area or the building's exterior. All the entries look alike, and some even enter from hallways. So, how do you differentiate your home from the four or five others that are for sale in your complex?
Try these simple steps to give your place the edge:
- Mind the door. While you may not be able to paint your condominium door a bright, trendy color, you can take a few moments to make sure it is clean and free from scuffs and finger marks. Use a whisk broom to brush off all dust, debris, and detritus that collects in the grooves and trim. If the door is wood, use a mild solution of a wood-safe soap to wash down the door, inside and out. Then, shine the door up with furniture polish so that it glows. If the door is metal or painted, use a gentle mixture of dish soap and water to remove grease and grime.
- Make it shine. Clean any glass in the door or sidelights with a vinegar and water solution or an appropriate glass cleaner. Use a metal cleaner on the door handle, deadbolts, and any metal trim, including the trim around the peephole, and shine up the fisheye lens too.
- Don’t forget the threshold. With a clean door, you’re already ahead of the game, but take a moment to sweep off the threshold (the wood or metal strip below the door), and all around the edges of the stoop or entry. Even when your doorway is in an interior hallway, the regular building cleaners may not get that extra dust and leftover dirt in the corners. Use your vacuum cleaner to suck away the last crumbs.
- Be welcoming. Set a fresh new welcome mat in front of your door and add a flower pot of bright blooms if you’re allowed. For interior doors, a tasteful wreath or swag on the door highlights your entry. Be careful to avoid going “over-the-top” though. Simple and elegant is best.
- Clear the entry. Your real control of the "appeal" starts once the door opens. Keep the entryway as open and uncluttered as possible. Move furniture away from the entry area to give it a more expansive feel. Keep décor simple, warm, and inviting. Avoid anything the potential buyer might bump into upon entering as that tends to leave the impression of small and crowded.
- Lighten things up. Put the best possible light on the subject. Take time to upgrade the bulbs in your entry lights (inside and out) to “daylight” LEDs for a friendly, well-lit glow.
A warm, inviting entrance sets the tone for the rest of the home, so give yours the edge it deserves.