Landscape Tips To Help Your Home Sell


Summer is a popular time for real estate, especially in those areas more prone to significant seasonal climate changes. A yard or lack of one can make or break a sale. If you’re considering selling your home or property, don’t skimp on making your yard and/or landscape one of the best exterior features of your home – use the landscaping tips below to help your property stand out from all the others.

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COORDINATE WITH COLOR

Accenting with pops of color is an excellent way to move your yard from drab to fabulous. Many buyers prefer a nice green lawn; if you live in a non-drought area, dedicate some time and water to ensuring your yard isn’t dead when it’s time to list it. You don’t need an in-ground sprinkler system either – you can find easy-to-use sprinkler units and hose attachments at your local hardware or home improvement store. You can also add color with flowers, shrubs, and trees: pots filled with annuals are an easy, affordable, and quick way to spruce up a drab entryway, driveway, front porch, or patio.

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POWER WASH

Sometimes an outdoor area doesn’t need a complete overhaul to look brand new. When it comes to decks, fences, driveways, and other outdoor surfaces that accumulate dirt and grime, power washing is a quick and easy way to freshen things up. You don’t have to go out and buy a power washer: many home improvement stores rent them out, and for the cost of the rental and a couple hours of your time, your home could look like new (just be sure you do the correct type of wash for your job – pressure washing is great for delivering a deep clean on hard surfaces, like a driveway or concrete patio; soft washing is a low-pressure type of power wash more suitable for houses and roofs).

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LEAD THE WAY WITH LIGHT

While it’s highly unlikely you’ll have many people come and view your home at night, a great and easy way to boost your current landscape is with lights! Whether it’s adding a new outdoor lamp, or putting in walkway/path lights (solar ones are readily available and environmentally friendly!), buyers love to see little details that enhance a home’s features. Pathway lights are often overlooked by homeowners, but a home with outdoor lighting will always speak volumes to potential buyers.

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DITCH THE DEAD PLANTS

A nice manicured yard always rates highly among buyers. But if half of your yard is dead, despite being landscaped, it’s a good idea to ditch the dead plants. Take a couple of minutes each day to check out your yard – grass, flower beds, pots, etc. – and pull out anything that’s dying or dead. While it’s definitely a plus to have flowers and shrubs, if they’re rotting, you’re better off getting rid of them completely.

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MAKEOVER YOUR MULCH

Flower beds are a great focal point for any yard, especially when they’re a real show stopper. But if your beds look weathered or rough, they can be a definite turn off to buyers. An easy, affordable and sure fire way to spruce up a tired flower bed is by adding new mulch or other ground cover like bark chips or gravel to help make the beds look fresh and new. A yard that has fresh mulch will always look great to a buyer.

The real estate market is slowing down, with some properties on the market longer than in recent months. If your home has been sitting, or you’re thinking of listing, don’t hesitate to spruce up your yard or outdoor areas. The tips above are a great place to start.

Questions to Ask When Relocating


Any move is a big undertaking, but moving long distance can become even more time consuming with all that goes into relocating. Whether a personal choice or required for work, moving you, your family, and all of your things to a new location is taxing. If you are looking to relocate, or know you will be relocating, here are some important questions to ask before the big move.

When Should You Leave?

When it comes to relocating for a job, you may not have the ability to make the choice of when to move. But, if you’re relocating for personal reasons, an important question to ask yourself is when you want to relocate. There can be many circumstances that affect when you move: time of year, housing markets, kids in school, and various other factors. If you’re in a relationship and relocating for a job, will you and your partner/family move at the same time or not? If you know you have ample time before your move, you’ll have more opportunities to research and plan. When it comes to moving long distance, the sooner you begin planning and researching the better.

How Will You Transport Your Belongings?

For some, relocating for a job comes with moving costs covered by the company. For others, and many relocating for personal reasons, the cost of the move falls solely upon the individual. Moving long-distance can be expensive, especially if you have a lot of belongings. An important question to ask is how will you transport your things. Will you hire a moving company? Rent a portable moving container? Pack and transport your items yourself? During your planning phase, research the costs of relocation and start looking at moving options as soon as possible. Many moving and shipping companies are booked out months in advance – if you have enough time, start researching immediately. Do not forget to read reviews and get as much information as you can before you make a decision.

Will You Bring Everything With You?

Watering your yard or plants can get cumbersome, especially if you have a large property or need to do it more than once a day. While there are Very few people enjoy the packing part of moving, especially if they have lots of things. When thinking of relocating, take some time to assess all of your current belongings. Will you bring everything with you? If your long-distance move finds you downsizing, it might be a good time to reduce the number of things you own. If you’re relocating to a larger home, you may want to keep everything you have to fill your new property. It’s important to remember that many moving and shipping companies base their costs on weight, so paring down your belongings before you relocate could help you save money on your move.

How Will You Transport Your Family?

If you have a family and you’re looking to relocate, start thinking of how you’ll get your family to your new destination. Will you ship all your belongings and fly to your new city, or will you all pile into the car and drive? If you plan on driving, where will you stay if your journey takes longer than a day? What will you do with any pets? If you’re going to drive, will the family car make it in one piece? If you’re moving to another country, do you have all the necessary papers/documentation for each family member? Moving one person can be work – moving an entire family can turn into a nightmare if you don’t plan ahead.

Moving is stressful, especially if you’re moving away from what you’re used to. Relocating can be exciting, but it can also be a lot of work. If you’re considering a long-distance move, ensure you do enough research beforehand to make the process as smooth as possible.

Outdoor Upgrades to Boost Your Home’s Value


Outdoor spaces are untapped potential when it comes to increasing home value. If you have a backyard, garden, or outdoor area that’s untouched, there are upgrades you can do that can help boost your property’s value and make your outdoor living experience better than ever. Find out some of the top outdoor upgrades below.

Add Outdoor Living Space

Living space is important in any home, and it’s even better if you can utilize your outdoor areas. Covered living spaces, like patios or decks, not only increase the amount of usable space on your property, they help add value to your home, and they’re a popular upgrade for homeowners across North America. If you have the space and extra budget, consider adding an outdoor kitchen as well. Outdoor kitchens are becoming more and more popular, especially with buyers who like to entertain. Utilizing your property’s outdoor space to add additional living and dining space will not only make your home more livable and marketable, you’ll also boost the value of your home when it comes time to sell.

Upgraded Fence

Security in and around your property is important, and a fence helps secure your yard from outside issues. If your property is lacking a fence, or your current fence is in need of some major TLC, consider a fence upgrade. Fences have a purpose, but they can also add a stylish design element to your yard. The initial investment in a fence can be a lot, especially if you have a big yard, but a good quality fence will last for many years, and if you choose to sell your home in the future, buyers look highly on a property with a good fence.

In-Ground Sprinkler System

Watering your yard or plants can get cumbersome, especially if you have a large property or need to do it more than once a day. While there are plenty of lawn sprinkler options online and at your local hardware store, an in-ground irrigation system not only helps make your life easier, it can also help boost your home’s value. Irrigation technology has evolved over the years to allow for smart systems that determine whether to water or not, which can help you save money over time. While an in-ground sprinkler system can be an investment, you’ll not only save time, you’ll definitely see a return when you sell.

Landscape Refresh

Just like inside your home, your yard and outdoor areas can become outdated and in need of a refresh. Landscape updates not only help improve your home’s value, they also look great. You don’t have to go all out – pulling weeds and other unwanted shrubs; adding trees, plants and mulch; or replacing worn out/dead grass with new seed or sod can help revitalize a sad yard and make it much more appealing to potential buyers. And even if you don’t plan on selling, you’ll be able to enjoy your new yard throughout the year.

Outdoor Lighting

Lighting can make or break a home, and it can also make or break a yard. There is a ton of untapped potential for boosting your home’s value and adding appeal by installing outdoor lighting. Additional lighting not only helps to enhance safety and security, it can help add luxury appeal to your yard that other homes may be lacking. Whether you upgrade your current exterior lighting, install landscape lighting or in-ground light fixtures, or even add solar lights along your home’s pathways, you’ll help boost your home’s value and make your home more appealing to future buyers.

Adding value to your home can seem like a huge task, but it’s not. If you have an outdoor area, utilize it! Many homeowners overlook the potential of their outdoor spaces when simple upgrades can add good value to the property. If you need help, a landscape architect or designer can help your home’s exterior achieve greatness.

Spring is Here—Time for Some Cleaning!


Spring cleaning, in its many forms, has been a practice around the globe for hundreds of years. And there’s no better time than the beginning weeks of Spring to give your home a refresh. Take this time to focus on the areas and spaces often overlooked and/or forgotten and bring new life and energy to your home this March.

Kitchen

Our kitchens see a lot of daily use and household traffic. While you may be regularly wiping down your counters or sweeping your floors, take this time to focus on those areas that have likely been overlooked.

  • Cabinets – Wipe down fronts of cabinets, handles and/or knobs
  • Fridge – Clean the shelves and drawers inside, wipe down the top, and vacuum underneath. If your fridge has a water dispenser, now is a great time to check the filter and replace it if needed.
  • Oven – Clean the inside, wipe down the cook top, and vacuum underneath. Also clean the range hood (if you have one), and kitchen exahust fan.
  • Microwave – Wipe out the inside and wash your turntable by hand or in the dishwasher.
  • Dishwasher – Wipe down the outside, clean out the filter, and run a cycle of white vinegar or other cleaner to clean the inside.
  • Drawers – Wipe out drawers (they can get pretty dirty over time)
  • Coffee Maker – Now is the perfect time to run that cleaning cycle or descale your brewer.
  • Walls – The wall behind your oven, cook top, and prep areas can get dirty and greasy. Use a mild cleaner to wipe them down.

As you clean, it’s a great time to go through your kitchen and declutter. If you have items you haven’t used in months (or even years) and are willing to part with them, donate them!

Living Space

Living spaces, just like kitchens, get a lot of household traffic. You may vacuum on the regular, so use this time to go after those elusive tasks that get forgotten.

  • Blankets and Pillows – Wash all throw blankets, and if you can remove throw pillow covers, wash those as well.
  • Sofa – If you can, vacuum under the cushions. Some sofa cushions have removable covers – if you can remove them, wash them. If you have leather, wipe down the leather. Now is also a great time to vacuum under the sofa, loveseats, chairs, etc.
  • Carpet/Floor – Living spaces are highly used; cleaning the carpet or floor is a great idea and can help bring new life into your rooms.

Bedroom/Bathroom

When it comes to your bedroom, you might put your clothes away regularly, but when was the last time you vacuumed under your bed? Dedicate time this Spring to a deep dive on cleaning your bedroom and bathroom. Don’t forget about your closet – this is also a good time to find those clothes and shoes you haven’t worn in ages and donate them.

  • Bed – Wash your bed linens and freshen up your mattress with baking soda (let it sit on the bare mattress for at least 10 minutes, then vacuum it up).
  • Vacuum under your bed, in your closet, and underneath any furniture (dresser, nightstand, desk, etc.).

For your bathroom: If you have a shower curtain, wash it! Shower curtain liners can be washed – just throw it in your washing machine with some bleach! Don’t forget your bath mat; most can be put in the washing machine as well.

Some other often forgotten items in your bathroom: behind the toilet, the shower head, the bathroom vent fan, inside drawers that hold hair supplies and/or makeup items, and shelving where dust accumulates.

General Areas

Almost every item in your home can collect dust. Grab a duster and go to town on your TV, bookshelves, media stand, fireplace, lamps and light bulbs, picture frames, fake plants, general decor, window ledges, door frames, baseboards, and anything else you can find that has a surface. Also, don’t forget furniture like a dining room table and chairs – dust can get everywhere!

Other items in your home that can easily be forgotten: door knobs, window tracks, ceiling fan blades, garbage cans and recycling bins, and pet bowl areas. During a deep clean, it’s also a good time to check that your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are working, and clean or replace your HVAC filter.

Spring is a great time to harness the new energy of the season and bring it into your home. Arm yourself with a caddy of supplies and get ready to clean. Not only will your home look better, but a clean home can also help improve your health.

Happy Spring!