Fo­cus on curb ap­peal for suc­cess


As we en­ter the spring home-sell­ing sea­son, re­mem­ber your home’s curb ap­peal is the first chance to im­press po­ten­tial buy­ers. Whether buy­ers are wowed by a beau­ti­ful and well-main­tained yard or are re­pelled by cracked stucco and an over­grown lawn can sig­nif­i­cantly im­pact your home’s sales price if you’re think­ing of sell­ing it this spring.

When buy­ers pull up to a house, they want to be able to pic­ture them­selves living in and com­ing home to it. Dead weeds and chipped paint can­make that all the more dif­fi­cult to vi­su­al­ize. Mak­ing sure your home is pre­pared— both in­side and out— be­fore you put it on the­mar­ket could help it sell faster and for top dollar.

Here are a few tips to make sure your curb ap­peal is mak­ing the best im­pres­sion on po­ten­tial buy­ers:

Clean your house. It’s not only the in­side of your home that needs to be kept clean of dirt and grime, the out­side of your home should be just as spot­less. Check your outer walls for chips or cracks, brush away any de­bris or cob­webs, and clean win­dows both in­side and out. Sim­ply fresh­en­ing up your house can sub­stan­tially raise the sale price.

A new coat of paint. Af­ter you’ve cleaned your home’s ex­te­rior, the next step is to ap­ply a fresh coat of paint on win­dow frames and door jambs. A new coat of paint is like a face-lift for your home but don’t try to make a state­ment with your home’s color. If your home is a wildly dif­fer­ent color from the other homes in your neigh­bor­hood, it could neg­a­tively af­fect a buyer’s per­cep­tion of the home’s value. And if your home is in a his­toric dis­trict or neigh­bor­hood with covenants, there may be rules that limit color op­tions.

A well-man­i­cured yard. Your front yard cre­ates your home’s first im­pres­sion to prospec­tive buy­ers, so make sure that your lawn is main­tained and your shrubs and flowerbeds arewell tended. It is im­por­tant to keep your yard neat, rak­ing any fallen leaves and pulling any weeds. If there is a bar­ren tree in your front yard, cut it down and con­sider re­plac­ing it with na­tive land­scap­ing. Wa­ter use is an im­por­tant con­sid­er­a­tion here in Santa Fe, so us­ing na­tive or low-wa­ter-use land­scap­ing can be a wel­comed fea­ture.

Re­pair the stucco. If your stucco is dam­aged, it can have a neg­a­tive im­pact on the value of your home. If your neigh­bors’ stucco is well main­tained or has been re­cently up­dated, it will make yours look es­pe­cially ragged. How­ever, that isn’t a project youmay want to take on your­self with­out the proper equip­ment; hire a pro­fes­sional with the right tools and train­ing to com­plete the re­pairs.

Check your roof. Lo­cate and re­pair any leaks as well as re­mov­ing fallen de­bris. Some­times a good clean­ing is all you need to have your roof look like new.

By mak­ing a few sim­ple changes to your home’s ex­te­rior, you can in­crease its value and hope­fully help it sell more quickly this spring.

Paco Ar­guello is chief ex­ec­u­tive of the Santa Fe As­so­ci­a­tion of Re­al­tors. Con­tact him at 982-8385 or

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