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Guide to Winter Curb Appeal

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By : Mike Andruff    99 or more times read
Real estate experts often tout the importance of curb appeal when it comes to selling your home, but usually their advice only relates to open houses that are held during spring or summer months. This is the time when flowers are in full bloom and sunlight bathes your property in a warm glow. What are sellers to do in late fall and winter, when skies are gray and the trees have lost all their foliage?

Dreary overcast days, brown and withered gardens, muddy walking paths, and drizzling skies do not make for an inviting scene. While buyers don't expect a miracle when they visit your home in the winter, they do expect your property to be in its best possible condition under the circumstances.

To get your home ready for a host of winter open houses, start by cleaning up. Rake up fallen leaves, pick up any trash, and put away all gardening tools and toys that may be strewn about. On a dry day, give your grass a quick haircut to give the whole yard a trim and uniform appearance. Hopefully you won't have left painting the house until the rainy season, but if you have, just look after the trim, front door, and any spots that desperately require some attention.

To brighten up the outdoors, add a pretty set of wind chimes and a cheerful looking bird feeder. You'll not only create a homier atmosphere, but you'll be doing the birds a big favour as well.

Place potted plants by the front door to welcome your guests and draw their attention to the house. Poinsettias are perfect for the job, as their bright red leaves and rich green leaves add spark and seasonal cheer to any space.

To make your garden more robust-looking through the colder months, plant evergreen trees and shrubs. Late fall is a perfect time to plant these year-round beauties, as they require lots of moisture during their first few months in the ground. Evergreens include various species of Fir, Verbena, Maple, Alder, Ash, Spruce, Pine, and English holly.

Drape white or clear Christmas lights around trees, or around the frame of your house. The gentle twinkle of white lights will instantly add a touch of magic to the winter landscape, and make your home seem warm and inviting. In addition, solar powered lights lining your walkway will ensure that potential buyers will make it safely to your door if they're viewing the property after dusk.

Another great way to ensure a safe entrance is to purchase heated mats to clear ice and snow off your walkways and stairs. Able to melt a couple inches of snow per hour, these mats make it safe and easy for people to get inside the home, and also saves you the hassle of having to shovel snow.

If you have everything in your yard set up in a neat and tidy fashion and a few dashes of colour to break up the gray, your home will stand out from the dreary houses around it. If you have a fireplace, light it up so that when buyers pull up to your driveway, they'll immediately see billows of smoke rising up the chimney, beckoning them to come inside.
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