When preparing your home to go on the market, or when starting any project really, it’s always best to start with “A” for analyze. Stand across the street from your home and take a good hard look. Now the point of this exercise is not to put yourself into a giant case of the shoulds, you know “woh, I should mow the lawn, I should weed the flower beds, I should have never planted those Calla lily’s they have taken over the flower beds”, nope, nope nope! The point is to try to look at your home the way a critical buyer would look at it.
Is the paint peeling? Can you see the front of your house or is it hidden by foliage that hasn’t been pruned since you bought the home in 1995. One of my favorite sayings that I learned from Barb Schwarz when I became an ASP is “If you can’t see it, you can’t sell it”. Keep that in mind as you look at the front of your home. But remember this isn’t the time to beat yourself up for neglecting your chores, this is the time to simply observe and start a list. Start with the most obvious, and work your way through to the most nit picky. Once you have your list the next step will be to sort through it and priotize based on importance, time, and of course money. Here are a few of the most common things that I put on the list for the outside of the home:
1. Prune trees from the bottom up to open up the view of your home.
2. Shape shrubs from the top down to create a symetrical shape.
3. Weed all flower beds
4. Spread fresh bark, either the standard red, or use dark brown which really pops next to healthy green lawn.
5. Plant flowering annuals to add a pop of color to your beds.
For some people these 5 things will be the end of the list but for others the list can go on and on. So for brevity’s sake, I’ll talk more about curb appeal and outdoor repairs in future blogs.
Once you have a good list for the front of your home it’s time to walk through the door. The key is to try to look at your home with new eyes. This is nowhere near as easy as it sounds. Most people I know are either hyper critical of themselves, or they can’t see anything wrong at all. It really is a good investment to hire a professional to perform a consultation and walk through your home with you. We can help you put things into perspective and prioritize what needs to be done so it isn’t so overwhelming.