It’s the little things that potential buyers notice when they first drive up to your home.
Whether the grass has been mowed, whether the roof is in good nick, and how much thought has been put into the exterior of the home.
Real estate agents refer to it as kerbside appeal, but all it really comes down to is making sure the outside of your home is free of clutter and looks attractive.
Which sounds easy to achieve, right? But when it’s your home — the same home you leave and come home to day in and day out — you become immune to a certain level of mess and clutter, and you stop seeing your home as potential buyers might.
“Buyers often need to be given the full story of a home,” interior designer Crystal Amesbury said.
“And if they’re not getting it then often they will just move on straight away.”
So here are a few key areas to focus on:
The paint job
Ms Amesbury said colour plays a huge role in transforming the exterior of a house.
“You don’t need to render the home or even do a half render, but a paint job over fibro or brick can make a big difference,” Ms Amesbury said.
“Check the colours in the rest of the street though. You want something that looks attractive, but is in harmony with the neighbourhood.
“Hiring a colour consultant is a good idea as they can advise you on how to achieve a seamless look.”
Sellers often overlook the roof, but it’s more visible to others than they often realise.
“When you stand back from the street, the roof takes up about 25 to 30 per cent of what you see,” Ms Amesbury said.
If the roof is dirty, it’s easy enough to clean it. If it’s tired and needs a revamp, then a paint job will be enough.
“Most of the time, the roof tiles won’t need to be replaced altogether and cleaning them or, failing that, painting them can do the trick.”
The oft-neglected driveway can become a canvas for oil stains, chipped paint and general wear and tear.
But does that matter?
“If someone is distracted by a bad driveway then they’re not getting the full story of the house,” Ms Amesbury said.
She suggests a fresh paint job or if there are a lot of cracks apply a stone finish, which hides a multitude of sins.
The front garden
A neat and tidy garden is a must so be honest with yourself and don’t plant extravagant beds if it’s going to be a nightmare to maintain them.
“If gardening is not your thing then keep it simple and plant natives that don’t require lots of maintenance,” Ms Amesbury said.
“And don’t be afraid of bark, which will keep the weeds down.”
And, most importantly, keep the front garden free of any gardening implements or clutter.
“You can get a small storage shed that are the size of old freezers that you can pack your gardening items away in,” Ms Amesbury said.
The little touches
Finally, it’s the little touches that can boost the appeal of your home’s exterior.
Things such as painting the front door a contrasting colour to the rest of the house or even adding some lighting to the garden.
“You can add a light by the mailbox or even add some lights installed into the ground along the driveway, which is a bit more expensive,” Ms Amesbury said.
“Instead of the usual Bunnings or Mitre 10, head to your local architectural hardware and buy a new letter box as they have some great designs and colours.
“And the hose reel doesn’t need to be boring and plastic either. There are some designer hose reels that look like they’re suspended in mid air.
“It’s all about the little touches.”