First impressions can make or break your property sale
I don’t know how many times that I have had buyers in the car, knowing that they will love the property I am taking them to if only I could just get them inside, when they will balk at even getting out of the car to view it, because the first impression is not very good.
Buyers often go by their first impression when they first view a house for sale, and if that feeling is a negative one it can permanently taint their enthusiasm.
Improving the appearance of the front of your house, even on a minimal budget, can induce buyers to be interested enough to check out the rest of the property, and the garden is an obvious place to start.
You can touch up things like wooden window and door frames if necessary too.
If your garden is overgrown and full of weeds, potential buyers may be turned off by just imagining the amount of work needed to tidy up.
So here are some easy ways to improve the garden and give it an immediate friendly face lift.
Firstly, take a photograph of the front of the property
If you don’t like what you see, then imagine what your buyer’s reaction will be when they spot the property online, as the front of the house is most likely the first picture that they will see.
They won’t look much further, and you will have wasted your advertising dollar.
Viewing your property in person is quite different from seeing it in photographs, so grab your phone and take a picture of the front of your house.
Now look at it objectively as if you are a buyer.
Does it look untidy? Are overgrown trees or shrubs obscuring some of the nice features?
Can you widen the walkway by pruning shrubs or bushes?
Prune and tidy the shrubs and mow the lawn
Most home buyers do not want to think about lots of work with up-keep and property, so make sure it looks tidy and easy to maintain.
Larger shrubs can reduce the visual impact of the facade, and can lead to the impression that the property is much smaller and perhaps in a lower price range.
Inspect your shrubs and see where they can be trimmed to create the best shape.
Don’t forget to remove any over hanging tree branches and inspect your gutters and pull down any invading vines.
Give the garden a good going over, weeding the overgrown patches, concentrating on the borders. Dig a designated perimeter around garden beds or use bricks, pavers, rocks or even garden edging from your local hardware store to create a tidy, defined edge.
Then spread bark around the plants and any areas where the soil is overexposed so that it looks neat and tidy.
Tidy, pruned gardens with nicely mowed lawns give the impression that the property is well cared for.
Try to disguise dark or untidy areas
Perhaps there are areas around the patio or verandah that are dark, and unappealing. Maybe the wash line is old and looks untidy?
Buyers could feel that there are problems to be solved or work to be done if there are areas that are untidy or damp.
With a little thought these areas can be easily remodelled and even be turned into a feature by hanging a hammock, or by adding a bench with colourful cushions.
By including some nice leafy green pot plants, perhaps ferns or palms, really make a difference.
Verandahs could be brightened by some hanging pot plants and some outdoor furniture.
Water blast the paths or stone steps, and remove any mould or moss filled areas.
Feature some large pot plants
Large tubs spilling over with lush and colourful flowers are so appealing to the eye.
They create an impression of a well-loved and well-maintained garden. Best of all, you can take them with you when you move.
Plant some bright annuals such as petunias and snapdragons in the summer sunlight and impatiens in the shade.
In cooler months plant lobelia, pansies and polyanthus. For taller, more architectural plantings, put in a weeping fig or a topiary boxwood shrub.
Make the lawn presentable
By improving a lawn it will add a lot of value and is well worth the time and financial investment.
Depending on your timeframe, you can fix a patchy lawn by either planting seed or laying turf.
Planting seed is best tackled in spring. It involves killing any existing weeds, and either digging up the surface or spreading new soil over the top and then planting and watering the seeds.
This process will take a few months to establish a healthy lush lawn.
Chat to your local lawn care specialist for a cost effective makeover.
By taking a little time and effort you will be able to transform your property to look fresh and easy care.
Remember that the object of putting your property on the market is to invite enquiry from as many buyers as possible, so that they can compete against each other to be the successful new owner.
So isn’t it worth spending a little to maximise your return on your investment?
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