First impressions count, and a buyer’s first impression will be the moment they arrive and view your property from the street.
Whether or not you are intending to sell your house, street appeal can have a significant impact on the property's perceived value. People will often make assumptions on the quality of the interior of a house based on its external presentation. It is also an indicator of whether or not the entire property has been cared for and maintained well by the residents.
Undertaking a revamp of your property’s street appeal will make your house more attractive and typically generates a better return on investment than other home improvement projects, especially if you are looking to sell within the next three years.
1. Clean windows and exterior walls
The first and most obvious step towards improving your street appeal is to clean your street-fronting windows and exterior walls. Water blasting or soft-washing these surfaces to remove dust, grime and mildew will make a huge difference to the presentation. Clean surfaces can also assist in making the property appear newer and more low maintenance.
2. Clear the way to the front door
The path to the front door should be clear and easy to access. Guests should be able to walk directly to the doorway without having to sidestep overgrown shrubs or step over miscellaneous items like spare pavers. It’s also a good idea to remove excessive pairs of shoes from the doorstep and store these out of sight instead.
3. Get rid of leaf debris and mow the lawns – including your berm
Leaf debris is especially prevalent in the autumn and early winter months. Not only does it look messy, but it can make outdoor spaces appear crowded and smaller than they actually are. Hire a leaf blower or get to work with a rake. Clear all leaf debris from gardens, lawns, fence lines, doorways and gutters. Piles of leaves blocking gutters look messy and can lead to blockages and breaks.
Mowing your lawn is also a key part of outdoor maintenance, so keep your lawn low and tidy, and don’t forget the berm. Its also a good idea to trim the edges with a weed eater.
4. Fix broken gutters, gates and fencing
Obvious remedial works are usually off-putting when it comes to street appeal. If you have broken gutters, or gates hanging off their hinges, take the time to repair these small defects.
5. Remove interior clutter from view
Street frontage windows allow a small glimpse into the presentation of the home. Ensure your street facing windows are kept free of clutter, decorations and stickers. It also pays to keep the room in view clean and tidy, especially if marketing your property for sale.
6. Ensure your external lights are working
External lights offer convenience, security and ambience in the evenings. They can also make your home really ‘pop’ in the twilight hour. If you have external light fittings, ensure all are in working order and replace any blown bulbs.
7. Check your letterbox
Letterboxes are often neglected as many people don’t realise they are the marker beacon for your address. Ensure your letterbox doesn’t look shabby and replace any missing numbers and letters; this is especially important if your home is on the market for sale and likely to have potential buyers trying to locate your home.
8. Does your front door need a coat of paint?
Painting your front door is an inexpensive yet very impactful step towards improving street appeal. A fresh coat of paint creates a clean, inviting point of access. If your exterior colours are very neutral, you may even want to opt for a brighter shade to create an inviting and eye-catching entry.
9. Keep your bins out of sight
These days most homeowners have quite a host of different bins outside for rubbish, recycling and greenwaste. Keep all bins out of view of the street. Where possible, hide them around the side of your property or behind a garage or shed, so that they don’t add clutter and scruffiness to your kerb side appeal.
For more tips improving the appeal of your property, check out our guide to preparing your home for sale.