If you’re thinking of selling this year, I would be happy to help you decide which of these projects would net the best value. Even if you’re not planning to sell any time soon, updating and maintaining your home regularly shows you take pride in owning it.
Wash the exterior. Over the years, dirt, grime and cobwebs can collect on your home’s exterior. A pressure washer can remove this buildup and give your home a fresh look, while at the same time adding value. Also, wash the windows (inside and out) and clean the gutters, downspouts and all doors, including garage doors.
Paint. Paint is a sure-fire way to boost the curb appeal of your home and make it the envy of your neighbourhood. Update your home with a coat of paint or two of the same colour, scrape a small swatch and bring it to the paint store to match it. Specialized paint store may retain the name of the colour you choose to use again for touch ups. Also paint the door, trim and shutters in a shade that compliments the rest of your home. Remember to prep the surface area before you start painting to help the paint last longer.
If you’re planning to sell soon, avoid unusual colours. Homes painted unusual shades may be appraised lower if they don’t fit in with the comparable homes on the market.
Install vinyl siding. Protect the exterior of your home with vinyl siding. Vinyl and premium vinyl siding are offered in a wide range of colours and are durable and low-maintenance. Premium vinyl lasts longer and may also integrate insulation. To keep it looking like new, clean it with a power washer periodically.
Although vinyl siding tends to be low-maintenance, you may have to replace your siding if you notice moisture or damage from hail, wildlife or extreme weather.
Repair or replace the roof. If your roof is in good shape, hire a professional to clean it and remove moss and dirt that have built up. If your roof is due for a replacement, it may be best to do so before you list it. If you aren’t planning to sell your home soon, maintaining it may help you avoid expensive repairs in the future.
Pay attention to the details. These details include door hardware and handles, light fixtures and house numbers. Polish the hardware or replace it with a style that compliments the home, such as oiled bronze for traditional styles and brushed nickel for contemporary styles. Purchase new numbers with the same finish as your hardware or purchase an address plaque to affix to your home or place in your yard. Update the style of your exterior lighting. If you’re replacing lights, look for ones that have the same mounting system as your current ones. Add more lighting to increase the safety of your entryway by adding an overhead fixture or wall sconces.
Nurture your landscape. A well-maintained landscape and lawn add to the home’s appeal, creating colourful dimensions and attractive lines. Mow the lawn regularly, mulch and weed the garden beds and prune any overgrown shrubs. Also, clear away any overgrown vines or invasive weeds that have crept into your landscape. In addition to mowing the lawn, add seed or sod to any bare spots you see. Add colour to your landscape with a few potted plants and flowers. If you have window boxes, be sure to maintain them throughout the growing season.
Build a fence. A fence not only increases privacy for homeowners, it may add value to your property as long as it fits with the style of the home and neighbourhood. If you already have a fence, keep it well maintained, and replace any broken gates, latches or planks.
Stay on top of maintenance. Performing regular maintenance not only helps prevent costly damage, it can also augment the value of your home. Studies show deferred maintenance may decrease your home’s value by as much as 10%. Tasks such as replacing missing mortar between bricks, resealing cracked asphalt and touching up faded or cracked paint may seem insignificant; however, these small imperfections may stand out to potential buyers and leave a negative impression, especially in competitive markets.