Staging the Outside of Your Home – Home Staging Tips from Melinda Potcher

Outdoor StagingJust as staging the inside of your home to get it ready for sale is important, so is staging the outside. You only have one chance to make a great first impression, and curb appeal when potential purchasers drive by or are coming to view your property is vital.

Let’s start at the curb – how does your mailbox look? A fresh coat of paint on the mailbox post can work wonders. Are your house numbers painted on the curb? Is there a median between the curb and sidewalk? How does it look? If it is filled with “just rock”, is the area weed free? Are there corners or pieces of weed barrier fabric or plastic sticking up from between the rocks? If so, a good weekend project when you are getting your home ready to go on the market is to rake or shovel off the existing rocks onto a tarp, replace or repair the weed barrier fabric, then redistribute the rock onto this area to make it as tidy as possible. If you have plantings in this area, make sure they are properly pruned in winter time, watered in spring summer and fall and that all planting beds surrounding your property are dressed to the 9’s with fresh mulch, crusher fine or rock.

Let’s move to your driveway and walkway – make sure they are swept regularly so they appear neat. Oil spots in the driveway should be treated with kitty litter, sand or dry cement. Cracks can be filled with specific filler depending on the driveway – black top crack sealer or concrete driveways have crack fillers too.

Do you have wood trim between the exterior walls and roof? What about gutters? If the paint is chipping, take the time to use a scraper or wire bristle brush, remove any peeling paint and give them a good touch up with exterior paint. If the gutters are sagging, this is a quick and inexpensive fix, and you can perform an internet search of “how to” videos if you are uncertain how to perform the task, or hire a gutter repair company to do the work for you.

Are your house numbers on the exterior of your home visible from the street or is something in the way like a vine or shrub? Trim back any overgrown vegetation that would prevent people from seeing the beauty of your house exterior.

Your front porch should be inviting. Remove wind chimes and whirly-gigs. A fresh and colorful mat at the front door that says “Welcome” is a must. Any empty pots or planters should be filled with seasonal living plants or removed while your home is on the market. If your front door paint or stain is faded or worn, consider freshening it up with a new coat. This is also an excellent time to consider washing the exterior of all of your windows. If you have a second story and no ladder or are adverse to heights, consider getting a quote from a professional window washing company and make them shine!

Side yards should be cleared of any debris swept or raked, and left over construction materials removed. Broken or sagging fence portions or posts should be mended, whether they are stained or painted, consider applying fresh layer. Replace any broken latches or hinges on side yard fence gates.

The back yard is an opportunity to really stand out – is your backyard worthy of a housewarming party? It should be clean and free of clutter, just like the inside of your home. Apply the same tips of repair and maintenance to a back porch, portal, or deck. If you have trees, take a look at their branches – dead branches should be removed and hauled off. If you have sprinklers, are they all functional?

If you are willing to make the time and address any maintenance or repair issues on the outside of your home, it may very well result in better offers and a more expedient sale.

Melinda PotcherContributor; Melinda Potcher, Design Consultant & Staging Specialist

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