02 Jun How your garden can help sell your home
With summer upon us, it’s a great time to showcase your garden to help sell your home.
At this time of year, we’re always asked what should be done to the garden and whether it makes a big difference to a home buyer. We feel that you can use even the smallest of outdoor spaces as another room. You should treat the garden in the same way that you treat any other part of the interior of your home.
We’ve put together our top tips to help you maximise the potential of your garden which should, in turn, add value to your house and lead to a quicker sale.
Don’t use your garden as a dump for all the stuff that you don’t want in your house, rusty radiators and soggy sofas are not an attractive start to the house viewing experience.
Keep pathways and patios clean and clear
Prospective buyers don’t want to be stepping over weeds and ducking under shrubs when trying to view your garden. If you have slippery pathways clean or power hose them down to avoid potential accidents.
Keep lawns well maintained
Don’t leave the grass until it looks like a meadow and then panic and mow it right down so that it then looks yellow and half dead. Try and keep the grass cut regularly once a fortnight throughout the growing season. Use a half-moon edger to create defined lawn edges for a professional finish.
Maximise on space
Overgrown hedges, lawns and shrubs can make a good sized garden feel tiny and cramped. Keep hedges trimmed and shrubs pruned where appropriate. In smaller urban gardens, consider an arbour over your sitting space. This gives the feeling of privacy and enclosure, which is especially important in built-up areas
Show off the best features in your garden
Many properties in Darlington and County Durham enjoy countryside views, make sure that you design your garden to show off your view or make the most of that sunny spot in your garden with a relaxing seating area.
When weeding, make sure that you dig up the roots where possible as perennial weeds will be back with a vengeance if you leave their roots in. Once you have cleared the ground, keep it weed free by hoeing regularly, and applying a thick layer of mulch.
If you want to keep your garden healthy then the worst thing you can do is to leave large areas of bare soil. Once you have weeded invest in some plants to fill the area and some quality mulch such as green waste compost or mushroom compost. Mulch is best applied when the ground is moist after rain. Make sure you keep new plants well watered until they are established.
Tatty fences and wobbly paving slabs should be fixed and painted. Clear drains and gutters, ensure any climbing plants are not growing in your gutters or under the tiles. A well-maintained garden will help assure buyers that the property has been cared for. Try and keep it low maintenance; a garden that requires a lot of upkeep can affect the valuation price and saleability of the home.
Get the light right
In some cases badly positioned or overgrown trees and plants can block allot of light from a house making it feel smaller and darker. Work done in the garden can change the feel of the house as well as the garden. Exterior lighting allows your garden to become a useable space at night. It also doesn’t have to cost a fortune. Additionally, many viewings take place in the afternoons and evenings, therefore it is worth investing in some garden lighting so potential buyers can get a good impression. If you already have this in place, check that none of the bulbs needs replacing ahead of any viewings.
If you have dogs or cats make sure that you pick up their poo, there is nothing more off-putting that stepping in one! Where possible try and ensure that your dog doesn’t wee on the lawn as the Nitrogen in the wee will make the lawn look patchy.
Keep it Private
Privacy is important to house buyers and fencing, a wall or large plants will help improve the value of a home.
Repair and repaint the shed
Buyers are looking for space inside and outside when viewing a home, so sheds and other outbuildings can act as an affordable living space and can be used for many different things, meaning they are a sought-after feature for potential house buyers.
If you can, have your garden landscaped
Make sure your garden is designed so it is balanced and feels like part of the house. A clever design will also make a garden appear larger than it is by using certain vistas and viewpoints.
Hit the Deck
Decking has a short shelf life, especially soft wood, which can be slippery and look cheap and unattractive. I spend a lot of time designing gardens to replace decking. Paved is permanent and will give you a solid base to work with.
Outdoor furniture helps potential buyers visualise how their garden could look. An outdoor kitchen area or BBQ for a family home can also add value and show how functional the space can be.
Create an al fresco kitchen area
Gone are the days when a portable BBQ would suffice. Separate buildings or sheds containing a kitchen and/or dining space outside the house are becoming more popular and are attractive to buyers.
How about a terrace?
A well-designed terrace extends the living environment of the house to the outside. Invest in good quality paving as you would with any flooring material inside the home.
Get a water feature
Running water can help mask background noise in areas near busy roads or schools. Small fountains or water features can help create a more peaceful environment – making it more attractive to potential buyers.
Be wary of unidentified plants and weeds in your garden
This year, Brits have been warned to prepare for a surge in the destructive Japanese knotweed after a particularly warm and wet winter. The plant’s roots grow up to 10cm per day and can cause serious structural damage to a property, with some homes losing up to 25 percent of their value because of it. There are even cases of buyers suing home sellers for not declaring knotweed, so it’s worth being vigilant.
If you’d like a chat about how to maximise the value of your home, please call us today on 01325-776424