8 Exterior Improvements for Your Home
What’s the first thing a potential home buyer sees? The beauty of the outside of your house. Home improvement is an important first step in selling your home, but don’t forget to consider the outside of your home. Increasing your home’s curb appeal will not only impress buyers but can also increase your overall home value. First impressions count, and sometimes the exterior appearance is what makes or breaks a deal. So, make sure the exterior of your home is sale-ready. Let’s walk through 8 improvements you can make to your home exterior:
1. Invest in Great Landscaping
Landscaping is a great way to improve your home’s appearance and catch a buyer’s eye. With the proper landscaping, you can create an oasis that draws people in – and keeps them there. To make your house stand out, consider adding a few trees or flowers to make your home more appealing. Trees add shade to your home, help reduce energy costs, and provide color for visual interest. Just as importantly, they attract the eye and boost curb appeal.
2. Spruce Up Your Exterior Paint
Painting your home’s exterior is one of the most cost-effective ways to make it look new and more attractive to the eye. While painting the exterior alone won’t sell your house, it will increase your home’s appeal. A bold new color, even on your front door, can make your home look modern and therefore appealing. In contrast, neutral or pastel colors are standard for higher-end properties. They tend to attract wealthier buyers (who have more money). So, choose your colors wisely. A paint consultation with an interior designer can help to push your home to a better look, as they know which colors will work well together and which won’t. Using all one color on your exterior is somewhat boring. Using a contrasting color for the fascia, window trim and belly band can make the exterior exciting and inviting.
3. Consider a New Front Door
The front door is the first thing people will see before entering your house. It should be in good condition and reflect the style of your home. If your door has seen better days, consider replacing or refinishing it. To get the most bang for your buck, choose a new front door that matches the style of your home. Match paint or stain colors, molding, hardware, and other elements so that it blends seamlessly into the rest of your house’s aesthetics.
If you’re not positive that replacing the front door will pay off in terms of resale value, consult with an expert, like a real estate agent, who can help guide you in deciding if it’s necessary. Another option is to give the front door a fresh coat of paint and new hardware.
4. Use House Numbers that Stand Out
The house number is often the first thing people see when they drive past your home, so the numbers must be visible. Use contrasting colors that are easy to read from a distance, like red, blue, or black numbers on a white background. Numbers can also be printed in all caps or with a script font depending on the style of your home.
A good size for your house number is 4″-6″ tall by 12″-16″ wide, with an inch of clearance between each digit and its border. This size makes it easy for drivers across both lanes of traffic to see the numbers – and if they’re looking for “123,” they won’t have to guess if it’s 1-2-3 or 2-3-4.
5. Give Some Attention to Your Exterior Lighting
Outdoor lighting can be a great way to highlight your home’s best features and make it easier for buyers to see the beauty of your property. It can also provide security and discourage burglars, who may think twice about breaking into a well-lit house. New outdoor lighting is affordable and accessible for most homeowners to install themselves.
Many types of outdoor lighting fixtures can be used in different ways, depending on their intended purpose:
- Outdoor floodlights illuminate large areas with bright light from above, making it easier to see when you’re coming or going at night.
- Motion-sensor lights turn on automatically whenever they sense movement nearby, which helps deter crime while saving energy by turning off automatically.
- Spotlight fixtures focus light on a specific point without illuminating much else. This makes them helpful in highlighting an object, like an architectural feature or piece of landscaping where they’re installed (like in front or alongside entrances).
6. Power-Wash Siding and Walkways
Power-washing siding and walkways is another way to get the exterior of your home looking its best. After a power wash, your home will look cleaner. You’ll also eliminate algae that can damage the appearance of your property over time.
If you do the job yourself, wear protective clothing (including shoes), goggles, gloves, and an appropriate face mask (if necessary).
Ensure everything dries entirely before painting over areas where water remains after washing surfaces thoroughly with soap solution and water. Nothing ruins a fresh coat of paint like getting paint mixed up with grimy old stuff like leaves or pollen.
7. Clean Out Those Gutters
Well-kept gutters and windows help improve the functionality of your home but also bring an aesthetic quality to the outside. If your gutters look old, rusty, or unkempt with peeling paint, they create the impression that you don’t maintain your home. That can be a deal-breaker. Don’t degrade the appearance of your home with dirty gutters. If you need to clean your gutters on a slippery roof due to ice or snow accumulation, use a ladder, so you don’t fall off!
8. Pay Close Attention to Detail
The first impression a buyer gets when they arrive at your home can be the difference between getting an offer and walking away empty-handed. Even though you may have the most beautiful garden, driveway, and front porch in town, if these areas are cluttered or dirty, it will give potential buyers a negative impression of your home. Here are some tips for making sure that as few people pass your house by as possible:
- Decorate your porch or patio with a cohesive, inviting style.
- Check your shutters and window parts to be sure they are still in top shape.
- Keep the grass short and free of weeds.
- Have no more than three inches of mulch on top of your yard areas (more than three inches can cause water runoff).
- Keep flower beds weed-free; they should not look like they’ve been neglected for months.
- Clear leaves from around trees; if there’s debris on the roof or overhanging branches, sweep them away.
Little things matter when you’re trying to sell a house. Look at your home with fresh eyes. Would you buy your home? Hopefully, the answer is yes.
None of these exterior improvements costs a fortune. Still, they will help your house make the best impression possible when buyers come along. Here’s to selling your home for top dollar!
Use Complements Home Interiors for Home Design Consultation in Bend, Oregon
We provide home remodeling and design consultation services. Visit our Interior Design showroom in Bend, Oregon, or contact us for more information.