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Curb Appeal: Landscaping Adds Value To Your Home

If you have the time and money then renovating your home is a smart investment. You get a more comfortable space and your home increases in value; it’s a win-win situation. But renovations don’t have to be limited to the interior. When you think of renovating your home what comes to mind? A new kitchen, new bathroom, tearing down the walls? I guess it’s only natural that these come to mind, but sometimes you have to think “outside the box”. Renovating your home’s exterior raises its perceived value by 10 percent or more on average.

photograph from homes.com

Busted pipes, additional costs, unknown problems, we’ve all seen those HGTV shows. If you’re looking to sell your home in the future don’t rely on polishing the inside and staging elegant furniture (although that helps). Instead, rely on good old fashioned curb appeal. They say not to judge a book by its cover, but people will inevitably judge a house by its landscape, even if it’s subconsciously. Potential buyers notice a well-manicured lawn, but homes with sophisticated landscape design and larger plants don’t only get noticed they get sold.

In a 1999 study, survey respondents from seven states were shown a picture of a suburban home with a mowed lawn and concrete walkway. They were then shown 16 other photographs of the same home with varying landscapes. Some included smaller plants, some focused on color and others had a strong emphasis on design. The designs ranged from foundation planting only, foundation planting with a large standalone flower bed or foundation planting with a couple spaced trees in the lawn. A few of the designs even included a colored concrete walkway. The plants in the study were in one of three variations; Evergreen only, Evergreen and deciduous, or Evergreen and deciduous with bright-colored perennials. The plants also varied in size.

After seeing the pictures, survey respondents were asked what they would pay for each home and what influenced their decisions. They attributed design sophistication and plant size to a perceived increase in the home’s value. How much of an increase? If the plants were larger and the design included pops of color, they would shell out an average of 10-12 percent more for the home. So, whether you’re wanting to standout in the neighborhood or you intend on selling your home in the near future, try upgrading your landscape before tearing down those walls.

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