Which Landscape Enhancements Will Increase Your Curb Appeal?

The answer is that most enhancements will do just that, but some do it more than others. Always beautiful, the following shrubs should be taken into consideration when you want to improve your home’s landscaping. These shrubs were found on almost every homestead owned by our grandparents. They have not fallen out of favor for any reason, only forgotten in the excitement that came with the many new cultivars that are now available. Take a look at these options to maximize your curb appeal!

? Hydrangea: Tolerant of most soil types but sensitive to drought and hot sun, this shrub has many flower colors available and the newer ‘Endless Summer’ series bloom all summer long.
? Spirea: Tolerant of most soils, these hardy deciduous shrubs come in many colors and show mounds of flowers come springtime that last all summer long.
? Lilac: Hundreds of cultivars are available, but most prefer neutral soil and some shade. Known for their heady scented flowers, they make great vase cuttings.
? Viburnum: With their beautiful springtime display, these smell wonderful and are favored by birds. If you do choose one, leave room for expansion as they tend to spread wider than their height.
? Hibiscus: Rose-of-Sharon never disappoint with their gorgeous late-summer flowers. They are very adaptable and easy to grow.



A Clean Deck Is a Must for Exterior Maintenance When Selling Your Home

Massachusetts homes have decks that are wonderful for enjoying the great outdoors, whether you are entertaining a crowd or just relaxing and enjoying the sunshine with a good book. This is a place that Buyers will want to picture themselves, their family, and their company, so make sure that it is a place they will want to spend time! Keep in mind that decks require maintenance to keep them looking fresh, clean and splinter free.

Proper maintenance is essential to extending the life of your deck. First, look over your deck carefully for any sections that may need repair. If there are improvements to be made, get them taken care of as quickly as possible; if it is before Buyers start touring, that is all the better! Next, thoroughly sweep it off. After that, you must arm yourself with a power-washer. If you do not own one, I have multiple contacts that can take care of that for you. There are a variety of deck cleaners available, but the best choice is an oxalic acid-based one. These clean your wood nicely, prevent rust, kill mildew and are even plant-friendly. If you have tough mildew stains, you will need to use oxygen bleach to remove the stains. Finally, consider coating the newly cleaned deck to keep it looking beautiful for Buyers.



Curb Appeal

If you are putting your Massachusetts house on the market, or own a rental property that is in need of a new tenant, get it to move more quickly by focusing on what experts say the market is currently calling for – more curb appeal.

In the past the two main things sellers focused on were making sure their kitchen was up to par and bathrooms were fresh.  Now we are finding that in this softened market, curb appeal is king. Make sure your property is ready when it is shown to prospective buyers. The first look makes a big difference, and this could be the only shot you have to make a good impression.

If you are having trouble deciding what changes need to be made, have no fear, because it’s what I do each and every day.  I start with the approach of simple economics. asking myself; “what can I do to the home in a few days that will cost $X, but will generate five times X in addition sales price.  I don’t want to put in 3k worth of granite counters to get 3K more for the home….but if I can spend 1k on paint and earn 10k in profit, I’ll do that all day long!

One thing that may be the single best asset to my career, is something I started when still selling home in Hawaii, which was to been to put together a “pre-marketing team,” that I can count on to help in a pinch.  After we meet and come up with a plan, I just need to make a few calls, and in comes my painter, handyman, electrician, carpet cleaner etc.  They all know each other, and all work based on the same fundamental principle of getting you as much as possible for your home.

An average of $3,000 is what one National Association of Realtors survey found was needed to make homes look cleaner, fresher and more modern. De-cluttering was high on the list of priorities as well. Make that first impression the best it can be since today’s  home buyers are jumping much more quickly on homes that appear to be updated and fresh.

If you run into any questions, or want me to take a look at your property and give you some ideas, by all means feel free to call or email me, and I’m delighted to help.