Staging Your Home from The Outside

Often times when sellers are getting their homes ready to sell, the focus is on what is going on inside the home. It is very important to look at your home "through the eyes of a Buyer." Cleaning and de-cluttering the inside is very important, but don't forget what prospective Buyers see when they drive up to your Park City home for sale.

Here are some easy, inexpensive fixes that will help create that outside appeal and get you one giant step closer to the sale of your Park City home.

Paint or stain the front and garage doors, especially if they show any weathering. These are the first visuals where a potential buyer focuses. If garage doors are metal and dented, they may need to be replaced.

Any old, basically abandoned sheds or small structures must be removed and the area should be graded and the grass replaced.

Change any dated outside light fixture(s).

Fix that driveway. If it is blacktop, make sure cracks and crumbling areas are dug out and filled and then the whole driveway sealed. If it is cement, have large cracks filled and repaired professionally. The buyer must at least feel they can drive the moving truck in confidently!

Make sure landscaping bricks are in their proper placement. Mowing, weed-whipping sometimes moves them and this is something the homeowner rarely notices, but makes the property look unsightly.

Fill in bare dirt under large shade trees. Plant shade-tolerant plants in defined planters or groundcover. Landscape properly for that area.

All landscaping beds should be cleaned out and updated for the time of year it is in your region. Place new bedding material down.

Have trees and bushes pruned and trimmed. If a bush or tree is looking old or about to expire, remove it and replace it with a similar size and type if you can. If there is a tree limb(s) over the roof, have them removed.

If the house needs painting and a full paint job is not in the cards; have it touched up professionally in the worst, most visible spots. Paint shutters and fix them if they are hanging crooked. At least this may help get Buyers in the front door, even if they negotiate a full paint job into the sale later.

If the house is sided, have it power-washed and have gutters and windows cleaned! Window cleaning inside and out makes the house feel updated and fresh, rather than old and dingy.

Make sure grass is in good shape, weeds are removed, trimming done regularly. So many sellers fall down on this job the minute the house is listed, and this is critical to selling a house quickly. In our Park City and Deer Valley climate, snow removal must be done regularly too. If you, the owner, have moved out, make sure you have a Home Warranty to re-assure buyers.

Keep garbage and recycle containers inside the garage, along with all toys and equipment. Make sure the garage is neat and organized. Painted walls and floors also go a long way in this area and are inexpensive to do.

Decks should be washed and repainted or re-sealed; with plantings around them cleaned, weed-free and looking good. Patio furniture should be in excellent condition. Even though it is in the backyard, this is the area where the Buyer can envision enjoying the warm days and the new yard.

If the roof has missing shingles and they can be replaced inexpensively, this should be done as it may save negotiation over a completely new roof. Roof repair needs and costs should be minor or you might as well replace the entire roof.

If the you wants to do a bit more, try solar lights lining the driveway or installing a more attractive front door with lead glass inserts and replacing plain doorknobs with something more custom.

If you have an evening showing, make sure lights are on outside and inside the house. This is warm and inviting.

If it's a holiday season, by all means decorate the home! Just like sugar cookies or vanilla scent on the inside of the house, this really says "it's a home" and I can see myself enjoying life here! In the least, always have some greenery or flowers for the season on the front step or porch; even a birdbath with a little garden around it says home.

Remember, most homebuyers cannot visualize even these simple changes and clean ups in a house and the ones who can will be looking for a reduced price. So to sell the house at top dollar and quickly by making it appeal to the many who will be seeing it rather than the few who are looking for a "fixer upper." These people know what they want, go after it and need less assistance.

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