I shouldn’t have to be the one to tell you, Curb Appeal is a pretty important part of selling your home. We all know how important First Impressions are, and when selling or buying a home, those first impressions are one of the most important things. Unfortunately, some of the projects that will make your house more appealing to buyers are a bit daunting. Fortunately, they don’t have to be, if you’re able to narrow down that project list to a few key players.
1. The Mailbox
Unless someone has come by with a bat recently, I’m assuming you haven’t touched your mailbox in quite a while. Welp, now’s the perfect time for some sprucing up for that neglected, frequently used little piece of your home. This is quite literally the first thing people will see of your home, especially if your house numbers are on it. Trust me, you mailbox makes an impression.
What condition is your mailbox in? You might not need to replace the whole thing. Is it rusting, squeaky, paint chipping? Pop it off and give it a fresh coat of spray paint. Consider painting it to match your front door. Is it too old, or too beat-up to be salvaged? If spray paint and some WD-40 won’t cut it, Wayfair and Home Depot (okay, any of the big box stores, probably) sell mailboxes for a pretty decent price that won’t break the bank. I thought replacing a mailbox would be tricky, but it’s actually just a matter of screwing it on. Way easier than I thought it would be.
2. The Front Door
Admittedly, this one is intimidating. I get it. It’s kind of a big deal, and the color is pretty important. Plus, depending on the overall state of your current front door, this project could be more difficult than I’m suggesting. Though, chances are, a good coat of paint will go a really long way here.
Remove the door (make sure to block the doorway or close the screen/storm door if you have pets or kiddos who may wander outside!). Remove the hardware, give it a good sanding, tape off the important parts, and lather on a fresh coat. As for the color, I love when a front door “Pops”. Not some bright, in-your-face color, just a bold one. A bold red, a gem-tone teal, a good navy blue, or even a clean, basic black. It all depends on the exterior color of your house.
If your paint is already in great shape, consider just replacing the hardware. I know, that might mean a new front door key. Trust me, it’s a lot simpler and easier than repainting the door completely, and can give the door a new look.
This is the least desirable project, by far. I completely understand. But hear me out – if it’s that much of a hot mess, just tear it all out. Give the buyers a blank canvas to envision. Yes, tearing things out is work, too, I know. But a weekend worth of sweat equity will absolutely be worth it, I assure you. An empty (or sparse) bed is way more desirable than a haggard, unruly one.
Pro tip: if you are pulling plants out and going with the “blank canvas” idea, don’t put in gravel or rocks. It’s one thing if they’re already established in the bed, but if the next homebuyers are not into xeriscaping, they will see that as something they have to “remove” and that is a chore.
I’m not suggesting you call in an electrician or anything. Keep this simple. If you have fixtures you like, clean them up (bugs, dust, etc — ew), a new coat of paint, if possible/necessary, and possibly a new bulb. Along those lines, make sure all your outdoor lights are, well, lit. If you have bulbs out, it doesn’t reflect well on the car you take of the house. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying you’re lazy — you’re here, aren’t you?! But if you’re looking to increase your curb appeal, then ignoring the small things like burnt out bulbs will not help you, it will hurt you.
Again, you might not have to get new fixtures, if you can clean up your current ones. Otherwise, invest a small amount in something that matches the look of your house – and try to keep the buyer in mind, not your own preferences.
I know, this one sounds a bit weird. But trust me – decor can go a long way in that First Impression. I’m not suggesting y’all go out and buy a bunch of outdoor art or signage or anything. Regarding decor, less is more, while none is simply ‘forgettable’.
So, what do I mean by ‘decor’? Easy.
I imagine you have these somewhere, and it’s likely you haven’t changed them or upgraded them since you put them up years ago. Am I close? Well, time to update them. Consider where they’re located now – is it the optimal spot? Are the numbers covered by vegetation? Are they well-lit at night? If your current numbers are in decent shape, consider taking them off and giving them a fresh coat of spray paint to match your front door. Easy, quick project that is likely not going to cost you much.
A new Welcome Mat
I think it’s ironic that this object — the thing that literally is meant to collect the dirt from your shoes — is such an important detail. But not only will it be functional (as you have strangers coming in and out of your house, you’ll hope that they use the mat), but it adds a bit of a vibe, to be honest. IMO, it’s a bit weird when you walk into a house that doesn’t have a welcome mat of some sort. You don’t have to get fancy with this, but something that says “Welcome!”, either literally or figuratively, would be perfect.
An American Flag
I will never get political in this blog, I promise. Hell, almost any flag will add curb appeal. Almost. And I shouldn’t have to list the “good” vs “bad” flags here, guys. Holiday flags, state flags, sport team flags — you get the idea. I prefer low maintenance – something I don’t have to change with the seasons or the holidays. Whatever type of flag it is, the goal is to make people feel comfortable.
Selling your home is a daunting things for a number of reasons. Not every part of it has to be intimidating. Curb appeal can be added fairly easily, and over the course of a weekend or two, especially if you know a couple of hacks to make things easier for yourself!