Pressure washing your home can be an excellent way to increase curb appeal on a budget. A good pressure washer can be used to clean vinyl siding, windows, driveways, decks and sidewalks.
You can buy, rent, or hire a pressure washer. And, there are a number of different types of machines available. So, in this post, I’m going to give you some tips on pressure washing your home to increase curb appeal and discuss which option might be the best for you.
Buying a pressure washer
If your next move is to a new home with vinyl siding and you plan on living there for several years. You may find that buying a pressure washer is the best option for you.
Many pressure washers pay for themselves after 3-5 uses. However, high end washers can be much more expensive.
The first thing to consider when buying a pressure washer is to determine what you’ll need it for and how often you’ll use it.
If you have a deck, sidewalk, or driveway that sit underneath pine trees, you can bet that they’re going to get dirty frequently.
If you find yourself wanting a washer more than once a year, it’s likely a safe investment.
Gas vs electric
Consumer pressure washers come in two main types: gas and electric. Gas-powered washers tend to be stronger (and therefore more dangerous). They’re also noisy and will require maintenance and tune-ups on occasion.
Electric, on the other hand, are better for less heavy duty cleaning. They tend to be cheaper, at around $100 - $250 each (vs $250 - $500 for a gas-powered washer), but you do sacrifice some power at the expense of cost and convenience.
Regardless of which option you choose, it’s important to understand that pressure washers can be dangerous machines if not used correctly. Be sure to fully follow the instructions on your washer and to never point it at yourself, including shoes, or clothing.
Renting a pressure washer
If you don’t want to deal with storage or maintenance, renting is a great option for a one-time job. Perhaps your next home will be a condo or townhouse where you don’t have to worry about exterior maintenance. In these situations, a one-time rental can be a good option.
Power washers can be rented from many hardware stores, including The Home Depot. But, a quick Google search for your area should bring up multiple places to rent nearby.
Hiring a professional pressure washer
Pressure washing your home, driveway, or deck is a lot easier than scrubbing them with a brush. But, it still takes a good deal of time to go out and pick up the rental, return home, figure out how to set up the washer and then clean your entire home.
To avoid the headache (and the potential safety risks), many homeowners hire a local pressure washing company to do the job.
Hiring a company has its advantages; namely, when you hire a professional (one with good reviews on Yelp and Google), you’re going to get the best results.
If you're getting ready to put your house on the market, your mind is probably flooded with dozens of unanswerable questions. Much of your uncertainty may revolve around the marketability of your home and how quickly a qualified buyer will come along.
Although there are factors over which you have little control, there are several things you can do to tip the scales in your direction.
Other than sprucing up your home and yard to maximize their visual appeal, choosing a top-notch real estate agent is the single most important step you can take. It's not only crucial to select an agent who is both experienced and proactive, but you'll also want to find a professional with whom you have a good rapport. You can usually get a pretty good idea of their experience and sales history from online profiles, but the only way to know whether they're a good fit for your needs and personality is by meeting with them face to face.
If you have the time and inclination, it can also be to your advantage to interview more than one candidate. The agent you ultimately choose will have a direct bearing on virtually all aspects of the sales process. By choosing a professional who is dedicated, knowledgeable, and easy to work with, you'll be taking a big step toward getting your house sold within the shortest period of time. A good agent will keep you motivated, informed, and focused on keeping your home in marketable condition. They'll also help you with everything from pricing and negotiating to problem solving and setting up appointments.
There are several other things you can do to increase the chances of attracting potential buyers and offers. Creating as much curb appeal as possible can go a long way toward making a great first impression. The concept of curb appeal can encompass many different elements, but the battle is half won when your lawn, bushes, and trees are kept neatly trimmed at all times. Weather permitting, displaying colorful potted flowers and hanging baskets is another way to add a lot of eye appeal to your home. Simple improvements like painting your front steps, sealcoating your driveway, or touching up the paint on window shutters or porch railings can also help enhance your home's curb appeal.
Although interior painting can be time-consuming and a bit messy, it's often one of the most cost-effective ways to make a positive impression on potential buyers. If your walls are looking scuffed, faded, or otherwise neglected, a fresh coat of neutral, beige, or grey paint can often make a huge difference in the eye-appeal of your home. Making sure your carpets are clean, counter tops are immaculate, and your windows are crystal clear are other ways to put your best foot forward when house hunters are scheduled to visit your home.
It's common knowledge that when selling a single-family home curb appeal is essential. You want buyers to be impressed by simply driving or walking by. The same is true for your condo. However, in a building full of similar or identical units that all have the same exterior style, how do you make yours stand out? There are a few ways you can make your condo entry more individual and appealing to prospective buyers.
- Start by planning for any pets to be boarded during open houses and cleaning up all pet supplies, food and litter boxes. If you do this a day ahead, that will give you time to get any remaining pet hair and smell out of your unit before showing.
- Make sure your unit is pest free. Get it treated regularly and do a special treatment before showing the home. Make sure to clean up dead bugs and throw out traps before your open house; you wouldn't want to lose a prospective buyer over a dead pest or an old trap.
- Make sure your door is clean and clutter free and put a welcoming mat in front of the entrance to create an entryway that draws buyers.
- Look for an easy to care for, but fresh, potted plant to put inside the door to bring a living touch of the outdoors inside. Ensure the plant is healthy, in an attractive pot, isn't surrounded by dead leaves and doesn't block your walkway. For smaller entryways, a hanging plant might be the best solution.
- Ensure your windows are spotless and bright for your open house. If it is your responsibility to do the outside of the glass, make sure to include that as well. In some condo complexes, that falls to the HOA, so put a request in that they do a cleaning right before your open house for the warmest and well-lit experience.
- Make sure the hallway and steps to your entryway are clean. That may mean you have to sweep or vacuum them yourself, but its worth it. Your building reflects on your unit, so you want to make it look as good as possible.
- Just like with a single-family home, make sure your home in clean, clutter-free, and store personal effects out of sight.
- When your home is going to show, ensure that its well-lit and play soft music to create a warm and welcoming vibe.
- If you have an internal mail slot, ensure that no mail is piled up below it. Not sure when your home might show? No problem. Just keep a basket under your mail slot so you can quickly pick it up and set it out of sight when prospective buyers arrive.
Once you’ve done all these things, talk to your real estate agent about what additional features to play up in your unit for the best selling price.
Putting your home on the market is not for the faint-hearted! As many people discover along the way, the road to selling a home can be rather bumpy -- especially if you attempt to sell it on your own.
Fortunately, there are several things you can do, right away, to make the journey shorter, smoother, and more rewarding. Here are three strategies that will greatly increase your chances of success.
Find a seasoned real estate agent. An experienced real estate agent will not only help you navigate state and federal regulations, negotiate with buyers, and get a handle on paperwork, but they'll also schedule showings of your home and provide continuous marketing help.
Enhance your curb appeal: When it comes to finding prospective buyers and setting up appointments, your real estate agent will do the lion's share of the work. However, it's mostly up to you to make sure your house looks its best and that the appearance of your property catches the eye of house hunters.
Once your home is listed online and a "for sale" sign is planted in your front yard, potential buyers are going to immediately take notice of how your house looks from the outside. Sometimes people browse listed houses from their cars, so it can really pay to make a great first impression from the street.
Some of the things that matter the most are a meticulous-looking yard, a clutter-free property, and a house that looks like it's well maintained. Adding a fresh coat of paint, displaying some colorful potted flowers, and taking care of unsightly weeds and overgrown bushes are a few things you can do to make your property look a lot more inviting.
Stage your home's interior: Once you've cleared the first big hurdle (curb appeal), your next priority -- or perhaps a simultaneous priority -- is to make the interior of your home look inviting and appealing. As is the case with boosting curb appeal, your real estate agent can provide you with cost-effective advice on how to get the most mileage from your efforts.
Some of the tried-and-proven methods of staging a home include reducing clutter, arranging living room furniture in "conversational groups" to depict a cozy, intimate environment, and letting plenty of natural light stream in to make your home appear as cheerful and bright as possible.
Fresh coats of neutral-colored paint should be applied to walls and ceilings on an as-needed basis, and all floors, tables, and counter tops should be kept immaculate. Home staging consultants often recommend removing (or toning down) certain decorating themes -- such as sports, religion, or even too many family photographs -- which may alienate some potential buyers.
The overall objective is to make it easy for house hunters to imagine themselves owning and living in your home. If there's anything about the appearance, decor, or smell of your home that makes people feel in any way uncomfortable, that could make it more difficult to find a committed buyer -- which, of course, is your ultimate goal!
You might believe that your house is real estate market-ready. However, if you fail to allocate the necessary time and resources to boost your house's curb appeal, you may miss out on opportunities to showcase the true beauty of your residence to potential buyers.
Fortunately, there are many proven ways to enhance your house's curb appeal, and these include:
1. Perform Home Exterior Maintenance
Consider the homebuyer's perspective as you assess your residence's exterior – you'll be glad you did. Because if you approach your residence like a homebuyer would, you may be able to identify "hidden" problem areas faster than ever before.
For example, if you notice damaged home siding or a messy front lawn, you should perform assorted home exterior maintenance and repairs. This will enable you to eliminate any home exterior eyesores before you list your residence.
2. Conduct a Property Inspection
If you want to go above and beyond the call of duty to assess your home exterior, you should conduct a property inspection. That way, you can work with a house expert to detect and resolve any home exterior issues.
During a property inspection, a home expert will evaluate your residence both inside and out. Then, the home expert will provide a report that outlines his or her inspection findings.
Review the results of a property inspection closely. The inspection report likely will contain valuable insights that you can use to prioritize myriad home exterior upgrades. And if you complete these upgrades, you may be able to transform an ordinary home exterior into a stunning one.
3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent
The real estate market can be difficult to navigate, particularly for a seller who wants to improve a house's exterior as quickly as possible. Luckily, real estate agents are available in cities and towns nationwide, and these housing market professionals can make it simple to find ways to enhance your residence's exterior.
A real estate agent is happy to provide recommendations about how you can upgrade your residence's exterior without breaking your budget. Thus, this housing market professional can help you get the best possible results from any home exterior improvement projects.
Of course, let's not forget about the assistance that a real estate agent can provide throughout the home selling journey, either.
A real estate agent will help you list your residence and promote it to potential buyers. He or she will even review offers on your house and negotiate with a buyer's agent on your behalf. With all of this support, a real estate agent will make it easy for you to maximize your home sale earnings.
If you're unsure about how to improve your home's curb appeal or perform various home selling tasks, you should hire a real estate agent. By employing a top-notch real estate agent, you can speed up the home selling process and increase the likelihood of a profitable home sale.