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Curb Appeal: First Impressions Count

Curb appeal is one of the most important factors in selling a home, and one of the most difficult to quantify, but one thing is certain – you know it when you see it! Homes sell for more money when they have it, and less money when they don’t. 

It’s common knowledge that drive-up first impressions count. Buyers want to be charmed and excited about a property. A clean, tidy front yard, front walk swept of leaves, snow and dirt, pavers laid safely and evenly, and an attractive frame of landscaping set the stage for the buyer’s imagination and a positive home-shopping experience. 

Buyers get an immediate sense when a home is well-maintained and loved. And it’s a short leap to visualizing their family and friends being favorably impressed with this home, making them more inclined to buy it.  

On closer inspection, buyers will continue to notice and appreciate all the efforts you’ve put in to make your home attractive enough to consider it for themselves. You’ve freshly painted the front door and trim and put out a cheery new welcome mat and planted cheerful flowers to add color. You’ve trimmed the trees, bushes and grass, so the yard looks fresh and appealing. 

So how much more work do you need to do to win buyers over? The answer depends on your home, your neighborhood and your region as to what’s most important to homebuyers. 

According to the 2021 Cost vs. Value Report, co-opted by Remodeling Magazine and the National Association of REALTORS found the top three remodeling projects with the best cost-to-values were on the exterior. Manufactured stone veneer (96% cost recouped at resale), garage door replacement (94% cost recouped) and fiber cement siding replacement (78% cost recouped). The veneer and siding were only two of three projects among the 15 most popular remodeling jobs that earned a higher return than the previous year. That’s good news for sellers who want to ramp up their home’s curb appeal. 

While it may seem counterintuitive to pay $100 and only get $78 or less at resale, updating is the best way to help a property appeal to future homebuyers. It’s the totality of the positive impression the homebuyer gets that matters. So every flower you plant, every stroke of paint, every repair you make, and every upgrade you remodel will collectively help your home sell faster and for more money. 

If you’re planning to update your home for resale, ask your Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices network professional for guidance. They can tell you which improvement projects will provide the most return upon resale for your individual home and for your particular market.