The real estate market seems to be shaping up, and fall could be the perfect time to finally sell your house before 2012 comes to a close.
If you haven't seen much traffic during open houses or haven't been having a lot of showings, it could be your home's curb appeal—in that it isn't appealing at all. With just a few simple exterior home improvements, you just might be able to snag those end-of-season real estate browsers.
Here are 5 easy curb appeal tips that you can put into practice this weekend.
- Fix up your front door. The front door leaves a lasting first impression of your house, and can make or break curb appeal. While completely replacing the front door is an option, you may not have time to complete that job in a weekend. What about sanding and repainting your existing door? That alone can make a big difference. No time for even that home improvement? At the very least add a nice fall foliage wreath, or a doorknocker to accentuate your home's entrance.
- Sync home hardware. Mismatched exterior hardware can make your home appear disheveled and create a non-cohesive aesthetic. By streamlining your house numbers, lock, door handle and exterior light fixtures with matching finishes, you can give your home a consistent, put-together look in less than a day and without a large investment. For a little extra security: SimpliciKey, makers of a wireless remote control deadbolt for your home, recommend upgrading your lock with a high-end deadbolt with cover plate.
- Makeover your mailbox. Make sure your mailbox complements your home's exterior, and is spiffy enough to catch the eye of a potential buyer—not make him or her want to look away. If you don't live in an area with strict rules, spruce up your standard letter holder with trim, new paint or a fancy finish, but steer clear of novelty sport or hobby mailboxes. For a little extra: Add a trellis behind the mailbox for extra landscaping and a pop of color.
- Great greenery. With fall being a transition time for many plants, you can bring depth to your yard by adding mums or ornamental grasses in hearty autumn colors. It's a project you can accomplish in a day. Feeling a little adventurous? Add reusable window boxes and porch containers filled with gourds, cornstalks and leaves to create an autumn feel.
- Light the way. Make sure the path to your front door is well lit by installing outdoor lighting that not only provides illumination and value but also security. For those without a walkway, installing a lamppost or lantern at the end of the driveway is a good option. No time to call an electrician? At the very least swap out old light bulbs on outdoor fixtures, especially if some have already burned out, for new energy-efficient ones. Or incorporate solar lights along your front door walkway for an easy and cost-effective makeover.
These easy improvements can increase your home's curb appeal, no matter the season.