How to increase the curb appeal of a home

Devon Higgins

From upgrading porch lighting to planting fresh flowers, we have put together some easy and affordable tips for realtors and sellers to increase the curb appeal of a home.

Use these helpful curb appeal tips to make buyers fall in love with your house instantly.

When a home’s curb appeal makes an inviting first impression, everyone (including potential homebuyers) will want to see what’s inside. In this post, we’ll share 7 easy and affordable tips for realtors and sellers to increase a home’s curb appeal.

But first, let’s take a look at why curb appeal matters.

Why curb appeal matters?
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First impressions matter and the exterior of your home is the first thing potential homebuyers see. Therefore, you want to make the outside of your home positive and inviting.

Curb appeal is real estate industry jargon for how your home looks from the street and around the outside. If buyers find the outside of your home attractive and appealing, they’ll want to see the inside, too.

The good news is that there are many affordable and easy ways to increase a home’s curb appeal. Just spending a few hours on a few weekends can help make a dramatic difference.

7 tips for increasing curb appeal of a home

Here are 7 easy do-it-yourself curb appeal tips that will help charm buyers before they set foot in the home.

1. First get a little perspective
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Most homeowners grow used to the look of the outside of their home and therefore often fail to notice little problems and neglected areas.

So, getting some fresh perspective can help!

With your realtor, stand across the street and look from several angles at your home’s curb appeal. Try to see your home as a prospective homebuyer might see it on his or her first visit.

After seeing your home from a slight distance, walk around the entire house — the sides, yard, front lawn — and take note of all the areas that need attention.

Check for the following:

  • Is there landscaping that needs to be trimmed?
  • Are your walkways dirty or cracked?
  • Do the flower beds have more weeds than flowers?

Potential homebuyers’ eyes quickly notice the small details. Catching any problems before a buyer does can help a home sell easier and for a better price.

We’re going to examine common problem areas and also offer a few easy tips to improve a home’s curb appeal.

2. Check the siding, roof & hardscaping
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Let’s start with the fundamentals — the hardscaping of the home. Consider these tips that could increase the curb appeal of the home:

  • How does the siding look? Could it use fresh paint or maybe benefit from power washing?
  • What about the roof? Mold, moss, and debris can be easily removed.
  • Are the sidewalk and walkways dingy or in need of repair?

When it comes to walkways and sidewalks, you can often easily create a new look inexpensively:

  • New flagstones or brick borders can make bland concrete a little more appealing.

One solid piece of advice — rent or borrow a pressure washer. These powerful little cleaning tools quickly remove dirt from roofs and siding and make driveways, walkways, patios, and decks look like new.

3. Now, let’s talk about the landscaping
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Greenery, flowers, and landscaping are easy and affordable ways to immediately increase a home’s curb appeal.

Here are a few tips:

  • Ensure that bushes and shrubs are well-trimmed.
  • Keep the lawn edged and green by watering and fertilizing.
  • Add color to the home by planting flowers.
  • Flower boxes in windows and on porches add loads of curb appeal.
  • Consider planting trees to frame the house or the entryway.

And, of course, plan to water the flowers and lawn and maintain them so the home looks its best when others pass by or come to visit.

4. Light up your exterior!
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New light fixtures can quickly update the look of the home and amplify its curb appeal. Think about these ways to brighten up the home’s evening appearance:

  • Landscaping lights add dramatic highlights to any house at night.
  • The entry lighting should be bright and inviting.
  • When selecting new fixtures, consider style as well as function.

For easy installation, try to choose fixtures that mount to the wall the same way as the existing fixtures.

5. Upgrade your mailbox
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Whether it is a regular mailbox that stands by the road or you have a box mounted to the house, making this easy upgrade is a way to add curb appeal and show buyers that you care about details.

Give these easy tips some thought:

  • Paint the mailbox post if it needs it.
  • Be bold! Select a mailbox with style and color.
  • Consider an elegant metal mailbox if it hangs on the wall.

6. Add stylish new house numbers
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If the house has faded numbers, or if the numbers are out of style, it’s time to purchase some new ones to increase the home’s curb appeal.

Consider these ideas:

  • Select modern house numbers made from aluminum, brass, or even steel.
  • The finish should match the finish on the home’s exterior light fixtures.
  • Make sure the numbers are big enough to be read from the street.

7. Create an inviting front entry
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The main entry and front door are powerful images to visitors and potential home buyers. Give some thought to these quick ways to add curb appeal to the entry of a home:

  • Add a new coat of paint or wood stain to the front door.
  • Polish or replace metal finish door hardware.
  • Hang plants or place beautiful potted flowers around the front entry.
  • Place fresh cushions for any furniture on the front porch.
  • Buy a new welcome mat to add color to the porch.

Make the home look inviting and create a welcoming ambiance before buyers even open the front door!

Get creative about curb appeal with virtual staging!

This spring, commit to increasing the curb appeal of your home. And consider one last tip that could save you time and money and get your home on the market faster!

Many agents and sellers don’t realize the amazing potential of real estate photo editing and virtual staging to digitally add curb appeal to your home.

Use virtual staging to transform your home digitally, so you can put the house on the market now, even while you’re making the actual updates and repairs. You can help potential homebuyers see the house’s potential by, for example, adding a beautiful pool area.

Home exterior before virtual staging:
Image source: PhotoUp

Home exterior after virtual staging by PhotoUp:
Image source: PhotoUp

Quite an improvement, right!

In addition, our expert editors can digitally help green your lawn, add landscaping, brighten cloudy skies, smooth over rough areas, declutter a messy yard, and even create “after repair” images.

We hope this post helped you learn about affordable ways to increase the curb appeal of your home and how virtual staging can help transform your real estate photography.

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I am a licensed real estate agent and real estate marketing professional. I've co-owned and managed PhotoUp, a company of 200+ people that designs and develops marketing tools and services for real estate professionals, all over the world.

Grand Rapids, MI

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