Does Your Home Have Curb Appeal

Curb Appeal: Does Your Home Have It?

Does Your Home Have Curb Appeal

True curb appeal can be an elusive thing. But there are a number of solutions available to homeowners who want to increase the value of their home or the likelihood of it selling. In fact, sometimes the issue is deciding which projects you should take on and which just are not worth it.

To make things simple, we are going to look at the house itself and the landscaping separately. We also want to make it clear that while you can always add features to both the building and property, proper maintenance of both is paramount in your efforts to get full value out of your sale. Usually, appraisers deduct the estimated cost of repairs from the estimated value. So by keeping up with routine care, you either save money in repair costs or make it close.

If you have the budget for large projects, you will likely want to hire professionals to design and develop a theme that fits the property itself as well as the location. If you are doing this all on your own, your best bet is to play it safe and work on the little things that tie your home together.

The House Itself

This is exactly what the buyer came to see. Therefore, you want to make the home look as inviting as possible. It is important that it looks taken care of so that prospective buyers can see themselves living in it. In nearly every market, how your home stacks up against the surrounding properties for sale is a key factor.

Home Maintenance

This is where all the hard work you put in over the years pays off or where all the neglect and procrastination finally catches up to you. The majority of the market is not looking for a fixer-upper; make sure both the interior and exterior of your home looks fresh and new! If your home needs a lot of work, it may not be something that buyers want to take on, especially if your competition is virtually maintenance free. Perform home maintenance regularly and it will not seem overwhelming when you are prepping to sell.

Get to Cleaning

Start with the windows, the trim, the siding, even the garage door needs to be cleaned up. Whatever you are not refinishing needs to look as clean and new as possible. Do not be scared to rent a pressure washer, and do not be afraid to ask a few friends to help you a few weekends in a row. If that is just too much fuss for you, a professional cleaning crew will cost you a few hundred dollars and get the job done in a couple of days.

Refinish and Replace

If you really want your home to sell, you have to be willing to touch up the damage that time, the elements, and your family have inflicted upon your home. Paint where necessary. Replace rotted and damaged trim. Find new house numbers and accents to substitute for the old and rusty versions. While making these cost-effective changes, you can simultaneously develop a new look for your property. With less work than homeowners often realize, the entire look of a house can change and its curb appeal can rise dramatically.

Roof and Gutters

This aspect of a home exterior gets special recognition from us because it can be so important but is too often overlooked by homeowners. Roofs are one area where regular maintenance really pays off. A new roof is very expensive and problems are hard for appraisers to miss, especially when they are significantly worse than the rest of the neighborhood. If you are lucky, you may get by with a good cleaning. If you have never given it a thought, you may need a complete overhaul. Either way, hire a professional and solicit the advice of your Realtor®.

Home Upgrades 

Does Your Front Door Add to your homes curb appeal?Some small upgrades are almost mandatory if you are serious about increasing your curb appeal. Make sure that you determine your budget before you begin to spend money on changes. It is important that you maximize your return on investment when spending money on a home you are looking to sell. No one wants a money pit that does not bring some type of return so invest wisely and reap the rewards.

Spruce up the Front Door

Your homes front door should be the focal point of its exterior. The way you dress it up can go a long way towards presenting an inviting appearance. Luckily, you do not have to make an expensive change to create a large effect. A simple touch of color, to the door itself, with trim, or potted plants as an accent can really make a statement or add a lovely addition to your overall theme. If you want to make a stronger statement, upgrade the light fixtures flanking the front door. Or go even bigger by adding stone or tile to your stoop, steps, or porch.

Windows and Trim

If you want to take things a step further than a coat of paint, getting new windows, trim, and shutters can really transform the look of a house. And when done right, this simple change can tie together a house and significantly increase curb appeal. You can also add extra dimension, texture, and color to the exterior by adding window boxes than fit in with the rest of the design. Surprisingly, even subtle changes (like a new window trim color) can make the exterior of your home stand out and get the property noticed.

Revamp Your Exterior

If it is within your budget, and you want to get the highest impact, upgrade the home’s exterior. You can add some stone detail on the front for texture and class or redo the entire home for the serious increase in equity. If you go the latter route, we highly recommend that you seek professional advice and collaborate with your Realtor® in order to maximize your return on investment. Often, local trends determine what type of large projects can be the most beneficial. A trusted real estate agent is your best resource for important market info!

Does Your Home Have Curb Appeal? Really…Does it?

Lawn and Landscaping

The modern home buyer understands that with their purchase, comes not only a building or two on a plot of land, but that plot of land itself. And as far as curb appeal is concerned, a buyer notices the lawn and landscaping well before they ever see how the master bathroom looks. What you do with the property can go a long way toward determining how long it stays on the market. Keep your yard looking its best and you will minimize any possible distractions as new buyers pull up to view your home.

Yard Maintanence

Fortunately, a little elbow grease can go a long way in the yard. If you always take care of your grass and natural areas, you can spend a lot less time here when it comes to putting your home on the market. The better your yard looks the more likely it is that buyers will want to stop and see what the rest of the home looks like. If you are unable to do the work yourself, hire out, but ensure your yard looks its best at all times.

Green Grass and Pretty Beds

You can avoid having to buy sod by taking care of your yard year-round. Seed, fertilize, water diligently, and it will pay off when it is time to move. Make sure that you keep your flower beds and natural areas free of weeds. Trim what needs to be trimmed, lay on a thick layer of mulch, and you can move onto the next project. If you have to do a whole revamp from neglect, you will have to spend a lot more time and energy just to get your landscape respectable.

Yard Accents

Accents such as arches, gates, fences, and sitting areas can be an asset to you as you attempt to sell your house. But if these items are in disarray or disrepair, they can actually have a negative effect. You do not want buyers to look at pieces in the yard and think the word “chore”. This can discourage buyers completely. Make sure that you take care of your yard so that it does not look cluttered and neglected. Your landscaping and architectural accents should compliment the home, not detract from it.

Yard Upgrades

Flowers Enhance Curb Appeal

It is smart to incorporate nature in multiple ways to the overall design and theme of your home’s exterior. There is also potential for significant increase in home value with different landscaping projects. If in doubt, drive through a few subdivisions or visit a new community in town to see what they are doing. Smart upgrades can add value to the home…unwise changes are a waste of time and money.

Flowers and Other Vegetation

Flowers are one of the best ways to splash some color across your lawn. Trees can provide aesthetic and practical value by providing shade or fruit. You can provide even more practical value by planting food or herbs gardens, which can also provide pleasant seasonal aromas or help to keep insects at bay. Sometimes, your existing beds can be enhanced with stone borders or a few new additions. This is one of the most inexpensive ways to attract more buyers and get your home off the market.

Mailbox Decor

For most homes, the mailbox is something like the ambassador for curb appeal. Make sure your mailbox at least looks new. Add some color with a few hardy flowers. At least make sure your mailbox is up to the neighborhood standard. But if you really want to make a statement, you can go for an upscale upgrade that will set your place apart from the street. Custom numbers or plates are another unique addition that can make your address stand out in a buyer’s mind.

Other Outside Accents

If you do not have any already, landscaping accents can be an inexpensive way to enhance the aesthetic appeal of your property. Comfortable places to sit, architectural novelties, and anything with water can really add that special touch of charm home buyers are often looking for. Certainly do not spend money here when you have more pressing concerns, but additions such as these can be a great way to spend the last couple hundred dollars of your budget.

Driveways and Walkways

If you have the budget for it, enhancing your driveways and walkways could be one of the best ways to gain a significant amount of home value. If you do not have a paved drive at all, or if it is in disrepair, this is a great way to add plenty of curb appeal. You can add stone borders or lighting to put your property in a different class. Driveways and walkways are the paths to your home, you want them to be an inviting path a buyer wants to travel on every day.

Parting Shots

Remember, curb appeal is not that difficult to come by, as long as you go about obtaining it the smart way. Start with maintenance: take care of your house and it will take care of you. Neglect it and reap what you sow!

A buyer’s first impression is all important. That is why it is so vital to coordinate your house and its landscaping in such a way that the property is instantly appealing. Professional advice is the best way to ensure that your money is well spent and that the changes you make will have a positive impact on your home’s value.

Try to look at your home as a potential buyer might. When you put yourself in that mindset, it is a lot easier to sense where you should really be critical, and most importantly, where your money is best spent.

407-957-9208

407-957-9208

Payment Options:  Cash, Check and all major credit cards accepted.

Is your landscaping terrible? Read this advice

Published Carson Arthur – February 26, 2015
landscaping design

So how do you choose what is right for your home?

I compare a property to a 3-course meal. The front yard is the appetizer. It sets the stage for the dinner and hopefully leaves your guests anticipating more. The house is definitely the meat and potatoes. It is the substance of the meal. Finally the backyard, which like the dessert course, finishes of the space.

Whether you’re having guests over for dinner or trying to impress potential buyers, people naturally start forming an opinion of your home from the moment they see it. That said, you only get one chance to make a first impression. For years, we were told that first impressions were made at the front door or at the front hallway. This is definitely not the case. Your front yard and landscaping is the very first thing people see when they come to your home and when it comes to home value, is definitely a smart investment.

How much of an investment should you make?

A first impression can increase your home’s perceived value by up to 7% according to a 2013 Century 21 study. That translates to $21,000 on the average Canadian home. This is a really important number. Basically, you now have a guideline of how much to spend on renovating the front yard.  If you stay under 7% of your home’s value when landscaping the front, experts say that you’ll probably get your entire investment back when it’s time to sell. Here’s where you should be spending your money:

  • A new front door – it’s the only one that has a higher return than cost (Remodeling Magazine, 2015).
  • Front walk ways
  • Well-designed driveways
  • Stone veneers – these top the list of must-haves for the best first impressions.

Before you start building landscaping into your budget, take a look at this video gallery for inspiration:

 

I love to drive through neighbourhoods and look at the landscaping and the houses. Some homeowners put a lot of detail into their front yards with shrubs, flowers, trees and even seating areas. You can tell they care for their spaces and it’s not a big leap to assume the inside of the house looks like the outside. I measure the success of a good front yard by how much I want to see the rest of the property. Other homeowners go with the standard foundation plants, an evergreen and a large lawn. While there’s nothing wrong with this default designs, there’s also nothing inspiring about these yards either. Potential buyers will even admit to driving past a home that has poor curb appeal!

Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t believe that the landscaping will sell a home. All of the components on your property need to be working together if you want to get maximum dollars…and who doesn’t want to make the most on their home when its time to sell?

landscapeanddesign

Who’s ready to think about landscaping and design? It’s never too early. We have a list of landscaping contractors who will help get your landscaping plans in order before the spring weather arrives.

Proudly brought to you by Curb Appeal Concrete Landscaping Borders, where our estimates are FREE within Central Florida.  Call today for details.

407-957-9208

407-957-9208

Property Line

Last month, I shared a photograph of one client’s desire to have his property line bordered – I thought it was quite clever!  For those of you who didn’t see the picture, I’ll post it here now along with the completed version!

I thought he might be planting bushes in-between the borders, but he had a different idea.  He used small stones to define the property line.  What do you think?

 

Establish your property line.

Establish your property line.

 

 

PropertyLineFinish

 

The only thing holding you back is your own imagination, and we can help create a unique design that mirrors your own personality!

Call today for your free estimate!

407-957-9208

407-957-9208

2014 Fall Landscaping Trends in Florida

curb-appeal-2272x1704-add-curb-appeal-the-decorative-edge-moyuc.comOne of the best parts of living in Central Florida in general, is that we often have great weather with lots of sunshine. This is why so many people in the area spend their time outdoors instead of cooped up in the house. Homeowners around Orlando are looking for unique and exciting ways to spice up their landscape design.

First impressions are the most lasting. This saying not only applies to meeting people for the first time, but also in design.  The first impression of a house is the landscape – or lack there of.  A poorly designed and ill-tended yard severely impacts the impression of a house.

So the question is:  Does your home have Curb Appeal? Before and After

2014’s landscape and gardening trends are all about personalizing your outdoor space to suit your own tastes and making the impression that mirrors your personal style. This idea revolves around themes of sustainability, color, low-maintenance, and carefully chosen details.

Always affordable and at once both decorative and functional, concrete garden edging effectively defines garden beds, tree surrounds, and driveway curbs, their versatility enabling you to match any landscape contour.  Concrete Landscaping Borders are to “frame” your landscape and home – not take away from it.  That’s why I like the picture above so much – you don’t even notice the border – but your beds will always stay in shape!

Perhaps most appealing of all is that concrete garden edging lasts for years and years. Once you’ve completed this project, you can forget all about it, resting assured of its durability.

For more information on how we can transform your yard into a beautiful and attractive retreat, please give us a call for your free estimate!

407-957-9208

407-957-9208

 

Three Important Things to Know When Hiring a Curbing Contractor

I enjoy the aspect of showing people what they should know when it comes to adding curbs into their landscape design.

One of the most important things that you, as a homeowner can do to avoid costly mistakes is to prepare yourself!  What I mean is; do you homework.  Try to understand the language that a contractor might throw at you to make themselves sound good, and most importantly, know what questions you most definitely should ask!

  1. Company Reputation:  How long have they been in business?  The ideal situation is to use a company and operator that have been established for over five years.  Ask for pictures of their own work (not those generated by another company for advertising), as well as addresses of their past clients so that you can look at their finished project.  Should something go wrong and you need repairs – you want a company that is established and can come back.  Not a fly-by-night company selling the product cheap.  Can they supply actual customer references?  Remember.  Curbs are durable and permanent.
  2. Guarantee:  Do they guarantee their workmanship and product?  It’s one thing if a tree falls on your curb and breaks it, because that is not the fault of the company. However, if the border crumbles to the touch after it is installed, then you want a company that stands behind their work; come back, remove it and replace it at no cost to you!
  3. Detail:  Finally, look at BOTH of the photographs shown below.  Which would you choose?  You want borders to enhance your lawn/landscape.  Not distract from it.

For more information on borders, please visit our website at http://www.curbappealborders.com.

Look closely. Are the lines straight? Is there a dip between the driveway and the grass? No, it looks pretty good, huh? These are curbs done by Curb Appeal Concrete Landscaping Borders.

Curb 17 - NOT Curb Appeal

Now these, on the other hand, is what you DON’T want. Notice how up and down the curbs are? We call them roller-coasters. These are definitely NOT our curbs!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Curb Appeal Concrete Landscaping Borders Payment Options:  Cash, Check and all major credit cards accepted.