If you have listed your property with me, you know one of the first things I do is counsel you on "clutter".  My other hot button is "Curb Appeal". 

Driving or walking around your neighborhood, you will notice that the petunias, begonias and most of the summer flowers have started to fade, die or freeze as the night temperatures begin to dip.  Now is the time to look at your garden and the front of your home from the eyes of a stranger or customer.  If you are considering listing your home, critical decisions must be made about what a prospect will see as they pull up in front of your home for a showing. Tend to the garden and remove the summer flowers.  As beautiful as they may have been throughout the warm weather, it is time to prepare for the Fall.  Plant or adorn the front steps with some colorful Chrysanthemums.  You can never go wrong with mums.  They come in every imaginable color and liven up even the most drab-looking house.  You can also try Winter Pansies--they last through the snowy weather and brighten up window boxes or the porch.  Look at your shrubbery, hedges or trees.  Trim or neaten or have a lawn service do the work for you.  If you are not a plant-type of person, buy a tasteful Fall-inspired wreath for your front door.


Inspect the outside of your home, shingles, siding, eaves, fences.  Check the gutters, remove/clean out the leaves.  Power wash the deck, porch, siding.  Make necessary repairs and touch up with paint anything that is obvious.  Clear away any debris from the yard or around the house. 

Have someone take a picture of your house from across the street and from the sidewalk or do it yourself and download it onto your computer.  You will be surprised at all the little things you don’t normally see about your house.  It won’t hurt to take pictures of the inside of your house also.  I notice odd and annoying things about my house every day but choose to ignore or overlook it or make a note to do something about it.  I am certain you do, also. 

Do you smoke?  I went to an Open House a few weeks ago and could not believe how the front lawn was littered with cigarette butts.  Also, the curb had so much grass growing out of it, I wondered if they actually paid a landscaper to do that job!  The side yard was cluttered with garbage bags and recycling bins.  I was so distracted by the outside, I almost resisted going inside.  (I did, though, and was pleasantly surprised.)  Although the house was clutter free, the front and back yard needed a complete clean-up.  I spoke to the Salesperson quietly with my comments and gave her my landscaper’s name and telephone number. 

If you follow my advice, you are on the path to a successful showing at least with Curb Appeal and the exterior of your property. If you have any helpful hints that you would like to share with me that I have not mentioned, please call me at 646-258-9696 or write me below or at joan.coogan@gmail.com

Posted by Joan Coogan on


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