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Let’s face it-if you are planning to sell your SALEM OREGON HOME in the next few months, the competition is stiff. With so many choices for buyers in the SALEM OREGON REAL ESTATE MARKET, your home must stand out. You need to have the best looking home at the best price. This all starts with CURB APPEAL. The first impression that your home makes on a buyer will determine whether or not they set an appointment to view your home.

Here is a short story to illustrate the importance of CURB APPEAL :

Your home is your castle...

The huge, dark gray house was more than unkempt; with a crumbling front wall, missing shingles, thigh-high grass, broken window panes, and household items scattered in the yard it looked sickly. THIS was Pam’s dream house? (names have been changed to protect the innocent ;-) ).

“Ummmm, Pam, with all due respect,” I said with my usual candor, “This place looks like it should have a black cloud and thunderbolt over it.” She sighed.

“But it was cheap, really cheap. You just have to look past the rundown condition and see the potential. How else could I afford a house this size?”

Though Pam, an artist with an incredible eye, was able to look into the future and see what the house could be after cleaning and repair, I was more like the average home buyer – extremely dubious. If I had been the one looking to buy a house, I wouldn’t have stepped a foot on that property. I wouldn’t have even slowed down the car.

Pam did get the house for about half the price of similar homes in comparable neighborhoods, which means the seller made 50% less on the sale because he was unwilling to do the repairs necessary to improve its curb appeal. It also took him over two years to find a buyer.

So, what can you do to make for a quick sale? CURB APPEAL.

“Curb appeal” is real estate talk for the initial appearance, and the impression it makes, of the house as seen from the road. It’s what the buyer sees and feels as she parks her car across the street, crosses the road, strolls up the front walkway and pauses to knock on the door. Curb appeal includes the overall neighborhood, the house’s location on the block, condition of landscaping, the overall look of the house, and attention to details.

A house needn’t sport a cloud and thunderbolt look for prospective buyers to bypass it for another one. Sometimes little irritants – weeds, peeling paint, or tacky lawn ornaments – can create enough doubt to make them go elsewhere.

Luckily, most of the little irritants can be corrected with a little time, a bit of money and an open mind.

Most real estate experts agree that the most important steps to take in preparing a house for listing include

  1. Fixing the driveway.
  2. Landscaping the yard.
  3. Painting the exterior.
  4. Painting or replacing the front door.

Stay tuned for Part 2 where we will talk more about curb appeal, and how to make your home stand out for buyers!   Also, be sure to check out the other articles in the Seller’s Top Dollar Tips Series.

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