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Landscaping Tips, Do It Yourself - How To Increase Profit from Your  Home Sale 


In today’s real estate market as there are many homes for sale. A home seller must increase the perceived value that their property is worth and more appealing to prospective buyers and decide what level of home improvement will be the best value. The first place to prove this to a buyer is the appearance of your property which is the first impression a buyer experiences and remembers known as “curb appeal”. Enhance the best exterior features and camouflage the bad features by accenting other areas.  A poorly designed landscaped property with overgrown trees & shrubs will actually lower you homes market value. Your landscaping must attract buyers to the property and feel inviting for prospects to want to see the rest of your house. Home improvements inside and outside of the house are important like kitchens, baths and decks but the first impression is the front exterior. Many buyers searching for a home randomly drive thru neighborhoods looking for a house that they have interest in. The landscaping in the front of your house must look fresh, clean, and well trimmed to stand out from the ordinary. Some landscaping ideas are inexpensive and just require labor to trim and cleanup the yard. Most of these tasks are easy do it yourself home improvements that can be completed within a few weekends prior to listing your house for sale.  Here are some landscaping tips of what to do to get you started.

  • From the street look at your house and property and take photos and notes of what items need to be improved, replaced or removed. Start the checklist at the curb and follow thru to the sidewalks, lawn, shrubs, trees, driveway borders, front and sides of the house and up to the front door.
  • Create a plan of what should be done first from the list to start the project and keep in mind how it will look during the different seasons.
  • Trim or remove overgrown or dead trees and shrubs against the house and clean up border lines or add decorative borders. Trim off branches 
  • Edge the grass around curbs, sidewalks and driveway and remove weeds. Remove weeds and leaves in flower beds and the perimeter of the house.
  • Keep your lawn green, repair sprinkler system or water regularly, and fertilize lawn & plants to keep give a healthy look.
  • Power/pressure wash the front steps, sidewalks and curbs to remove mold, mildew, dirt to brighten the appearance.
  • Add fresh mulch to flower beds, make a border around the house or add free form islands of planting beds with accents.
  • If the time of year allows plant flowers and some crawling evergreen plants.
  • Clean the windows, siding, shutters and paint the front door and trim. Repair or replace the front entrance light fixtures and consider adding some low voltage landscape lighting.
  • Repair cracks in sidewalks and driveway and apply a coat of sealer. Check that gutters and downspouts are in place and working properly.

Here are some basic landscaping tips to consider in your planning. When you are selecting flowering plants or trees, coordinate the colors to keep the same base color theme throughout the yard as these are the highlights of plantings. Use flowers to accent or highlight ground cover and balance the types and colors in front of your house. If you are planning on flower beds at most use three colors and accent with colors of the house or trim or shutters. By simply adding flowers, mulch and borders you can dramatically improve the look. Place flower pots or urns on either side of the front door, this gives the homes entrance a warm inviting look.

This minor landscaping and cleaning up is inexpensive when you consider your return should be 8 – 10% higher on the overall house selling price. Do not list your house for sale until the improvements are complete.

What to avoid when landscaping.

1. No Plan - shrubs, trees and plants to the front yard without planning and or can’t visualize how the landscaping will look as it matures.

2. No Layout - homeowners go to the home center and buy a carload of plants and shrubs and plant them 1’ apart because they are small.

3. No coordination of size - the result is that the front yard looks like a display area from a nursery with one of each species.

5. Remove stumps - stumps standing from previous cut trees or shrubs, either have them removed or cut the stump off low and plant shrubs around it.

6. No color theme - no color just around the foundation of the house, spread the color in other areas to add depth to property.

7. Climbing plants & vines - crawling plants or ivy climbing on siding or trees as this looks overgrown and unmaintained.

8. No focal point - too many small shrubs and trees of the same size takes away from the landscapes appeal.

9. No seasonal plant guide – not knowing how your landscape will look in the fall and winter.

10. Planting trees too close to house, unaware of how much room each species of large shrubs or trees is needed. 

Before you start this landscaping project take pictures of the front yard  and when it is complete take some more photos of the home improvement. You will clearly see the difference and realize that the improvements do increase the perceived value of your home. Do the same for the backyard - clean up, trim, paint/stain fence, and landscape around the pool area. Complete the whole project before you list your house for sale.




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