Improving Curb Appeal Guide


To Get Your Best Price, Put Your Best Face Forward

Enhance Your Curb Appeal

4 Simple Steps to Beautifying Your Landscape

Your yard is the first thing prospective buyers see when they approach your home. If you welcome them with a neat, attractive landscape you are likely to sell your home more quickly at the price you want. Experience has shown that this positive first impression, this "curb appeal", will encourage potential buyers to appreciate the other features of your home. Realtors estimate that a lush lawn and attractive plantings increase the value of your home by as much as 3% - 7%. Why not invest some time now to beautify your landscape?

Upgrade Your Lawn

Topdress To Improve Your Turf Soil
Healthy soil grows vigorous, green grass. In the spring or fall prior to putting your house on the market, rake a quarter-inch layer of topsoil, compost or peat moss over your lawn. This topdressing of organic material will gradually be incorporated into the soil under your turf, improving its ability to retain moisture and air and keep grass roots healthy. You'll see results in two to three weeks.

Overseed For A Thicker Turf
Make your lawn thick and green by seeding it with fresh, vigorous seed, right over the existing lawn. In the fall use a Kentucky bluegrass mixture. In the spring use a perennial ryegrass mixture. Water seed and new seedlings every day for three weeks so they don't dry out. The lawn will look better in about three to four weeks.

Groom Your Lawn
Mowing Tips
Mow grass at two inches, no less. Taller grass looks lusher and stays green during the heat of the summer. Mow frequently while your home is on the market. Mowing every 5 or 6 days gives a lawn a very uniform, smooth appearance that attracts passers by.

Edging and Trimming
Edge and Trim your lawn after mowing for a neater, more attractive yard. While clipping turf along fences, drives and walks, pull any weeds that appear in these areas. Keep sticks, debris and kid's toys picked up. Sweep the walk after trimming.

Green Up The Lawn
For a rapid green-up of your lawn, spray the grass with a liquid fertilizer packaged as a sprayer for the end of your garden hose. Do this every three or four weeks until you sell your house (do not fertilize in the winter when the grass is not growing).

Dress Up Shrubs and Trees
Cosmetic Pruning
Prune dead and damaged limbs from shrubs and small trees. Clip branches individually to neaten and shape overgrown shrubs so that they retain a natural look. A trained arborist will do this for your large trees.

Mulch, Mulch, and More Mulch
Nothing neatens a yard more effectively than an attractive organic mulch spread on the bare soil under all trees and shrubs. Choose shredded bark or bark nuggets of various sizes at your local garden center for a handsome, textured look. Spread two to three inches of mulch over all bare soil in garden beds or along fence lines.

Remove Unsightly Trees & Shrubs
Remove aged shrubs that are so overgrown that they obscure the front of the house. Replace them with small shrubs or even with containers filled with flowers.

Upgrade Your Lawn

Decorate With Flowers
Use colorful, long blooming annual flowers to win friends and influence buyers. Even non-gardeners find it easy to strategically place pots of geraniums, petunias and impatiens to accent the positive features of the yard. Draw attention to the doorway, highlight a birdbath or punctuate a gate or pool area with flowers. Don't forget cheerful hanging baskets for the porch or patio.

Screen Unattractive Areas
Use small trees and shrubs in containers to temporarily minimize the negative features of your yard, especially in the front. Locate potted evergreen shrubs to screen utility areas, dog runs, utility meters, and air conditioners. If time permits, plant a fast-growing vine such as honeysuckle, sweet pea or morning glory to cover an unsightly anchor fence or a rotting stump that cannot be be removed.


Decorate your yard to welcome visitors just as you would decorate the inside of your house.

Curb Appeal Checklist:

  • Topdressing spread on lawn
  • Lawn overseeded
  • Kids toys in back yard
  • Walks, fences and planted beds weeded
  • Sticks and debris removed from lawn and walks
  • Grass mowed often at 2 inches
  • Lawn edges trimmed
  • Use liquid fertilizer for quick lawn greenup
  • Bare soil mulched with bark nuggets
  • Trees and shrubs neatly pruned
  • Overgrown or ailing trees and shrubs removed
  • Potted shrubs, vines screen unattractive spots
  • Containers of blooming annual flowers on doorstep, porch, and / or deck
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