It seems appropriate at this time of year in Cincinnati to remember that spring is just around the corner….or in the case of the daffodils, already peeking out of the ground…that maybe warm weather is already here and it’s time for a guest article about sprucing up curb appeal.
By: Harriet Withycombe
First impressions are everything, houses not excluded. Think of your home’s landscaping and general outward appearance as an advertisement. Your humble—or not so humble—abode communicates the type of owner you are, and depending on its aesthetic quality, will attract or deter potential home buyers. Here’s how to lure buyers to your home yearlong.
The condition of the lawn is one of the first impressions potential home buyers will gather. If your lawn is anything less than verdant green swaths, there is much work to be done. When mowing your lawn, set the mower’s blades high (two inches will do) — yes, you’ll have to mow often this way, but higher grass won’t dry out or wilt into an icky brown. Set a sprinkler or hose the grass regularly if the grass is withering or brittle. Don’t underestimate the value of a meticulously manicured and edged lawn—it’s an important visual indicator to buyers that you care for and maintain your home.
Should unsightly stumps of former trees razed by disease or storm blemish your lawn, there is a fairly simple solution. You can get rid of stumps with a stump grinder. The best stump grinder for your situation will depend on your experience level, the size of the stump, and how far down you want to dig. At minimum, you’ll want to grind the stump and root system until you’re left with a four inch crater. After raking the wood chips, cover the hole with topsoil. Stamp down on the layer of topsoil, sprinkle grass seed and rake it in. Water the patch and cover with a layer of mulch hay, and your stump extraction is complete.
Winter – The cold season presents the most challenges in designing an attractive landscape to sell your home. Snow will likely blanket all the beautiful botanical work and curb appeal you may have worked so fervently to achieve. Early darkness will also shroud any landscaping changes, so ensure that your home is sufficiently lit or install time-sensitive lights once the sun sets. Shovel the snow and salt the ice—needless to say, you don’t want possible buyers slipping and falling.
Spring – A season of growth and change, spring is the best time to sell your home. Play up the revitalization of spring by setting up potted plants of solar yellow daffodils, tulips or other vibrant-hued floral arrangements. Lay a new layer of mulch around shrubs and trees, or if your landscape’s flora is lacking, plant new ones.
Summer – The summer sun may brown your lawn, cooking wide patches to a crisp . Keep it green and healthy by hydrating the grass and following the lawn tips above. To create a warm invitation to your home, extend your living quarters outdoors. Set up an outdoor table with parasol and chairs for a welcoming environment. One more tip: mowing diagonally is an illusive technique to make your lawn appear larger than it is.
Autumn – Relentlessly raking leaves is your main task once fall arrives. Scattered leaves on the lawn won’t win any points with home buyers and ruin the lawn to boot. Consider planting deciduous shrubs or trees such as the Japanese Maple to achieve unparalleled autumn beauty—the foliage will turn fiery reds and oranges. Celebrate the season with the festive decor of ripe orange pumpkins or exquisitely carved and lit jack-o-lanterns lined along the front entryway.