Use Curb Appeal to Give Your Property Value a Boost
Stand above the rest with these tips and things will be looking up
Whether it’s a hot zip code, a desirable community, or legendary address, every town has one. We’re talking about the “it” neighborhoods, the places where everyone wants to live. What makes these neighborhoods stand above the rest? Curb appeal. Here’s how your HOA can steal a page from their playbook.
Make a Good Impression
When prioritizing upgrades, consider the first thing residents, prospective residents, and visitors see when they arrive at the community. Entrances set the tone for the value — both real and perceived — of the properties inside the neighborhood. Clever landscape design can accent focal points, such as signage or water features, to make them more prominent. The same goes for amenities you want to stand out, such as recreation centers and pools. These are the perfect areas to invest in seasonal color rotations, since the periodic change in appearance will help attract eyes, even for frequent passerby. If budget is limited for seasonal color rotations, talk to your landscape provider about utilizing perennials for some or all of the design. This will yield the same lush appearance without the need to replace plant material regularly.
Landscape is also a cost-effective way to conceal less attractive features. Ornamental grasses and shrubs can hide utility boxes and other eye sores that might otherwise detract from your community’s finer features.
Tend to the Details
You’ve heard the saying: “the devil is in the details.” Think of all the details prospective buyers will consider when evaluating your community — from big (the presence of amenities) to small (the presence of weeds). While you can’t always control what a prospective buyer will think, you can control what they’ll see. Here’s how:
- Pressure washing: It’s hard for a property to sparkle when it’s covered in dirt, grime, and mildew. Regularly pressure wash building exteriors, signage, and trim to keep a fresh appearance.
- Landscape maintenance: Don’t skimp on routine landscape maintenance. Weeds and unkempt lawns and beds send the wrong message to potential buyers. Also, be sure to swiftly replace trees or shrubs that have succumb to disease, been irreparably damaged by severe weather, or didn’t survive the winter.
- Hardscape damage: This one isn’t just an aesthetics issue, but it’s also a risk management issue. Address the underlying cause and repair buckled, cracked, or uneven concrete, paving, or masonry before it gets worse or someone gets hurt.
- Uncommon features: Want to really stand out? Differentiate your community by adding features others don’t have. Koi ponds, water features, dog parks, and walking trails are just a few ideas that add charm and value.
Cast Some Shade
Looking to maximize the value of your outdoor living and recreation spaces? Just add shade. The only thing more attractive than indoor/outdoor living spaces are ones that can be enjoyed year-round. During the sweltering summer months, shaded areas make it possible to continue to enjoy the outdoors.
The allure of tree-lined streets is undeniable. However, for areas where people gather, trees aren’t your only option. Gazebos, pavilions, arbors, pergolas, and shade sails add visual interest and create outdoor rooms where residents can enjoy nature while protected from the elements. It’s a cost-effective way to add another amenity and enhance your community’s landscape.
Irrigation can be a significant expense for any community, let alone one in a drought-affected area. Converting the community’s irrigation system to utilize reclaimed or recycled water can be an attractive feature to both green-minded and budget-conscious buyers. Reclaimed or recycled water is wastewater that has been treated to make it safe for other uses. While it’s not potable, it is a beneficial source of irrigation for landscape. This makes the benefits twofold — helping to reduce a community’s water bill while enhancing the appearance of the landscape through an unrestricted water source.
As you consider options for enhancing your community, be sure to loop in your landscape partner early in the deliberations. An experienced landscape partner can provide valuable insight into the improvements that will provide the greatest return on investment. They may also be able to provide guidance on how projects can be spread out over time to lessen budgetary impact, making your community’s big ideas that much closer to reality.