When getting your house ready for sale, the yard may be the last item on your list of things to do. However, a study has shown that the dollar for dollar return on your landscaping investment is higher than any other home improvement you might do. It was reported that you will receive a whopping 109 per cent return for every dollar you spend on landscaping. It is certainly something that should be high on your list of priorities when preparing your home for sale. Overall, good landscaping increased the perceived value of a home by 5 – 11 per cent, the same study reported.
And it’s not just the landscaping inside your own yard that can make a difference. If the street you live on has a lot of trees on it, with big canopy’s and plenty of leaf cover, the value of a home can increase by more than five per cent. Homes in a leafy street in Brisbane reported sales of up to $29,000 more than the median house price, one council case study said.
Seeing as you are not in charge of the amount and the type of trees on your street, it makes sense to put your energy into the landscaping in your own yard. Whether you are ready to sell, or you just want to make the most of the value of your home, there are things you can do that will immediately increase the price on your property.
Clean it up
Having a yard that is overrun with bushes and weeds will devalue your home in an instant. Not only does it look messy, but to a potential buyer the overgrown yard will spell ‘work’. The best thing you can do is look into skip hire in Melbourne and get rid of it. Organise a working bee with friends and family one weekend to rip the undergrowth out, and throw it into the skip bin to be hauled away. This will leave you with a nice, blank canvas to start your landscaping work.
Take a moment to look at your garden and decide what you are going to do with it. It’s best to have a plan before you even start, otherwise you will end up planting things in places that don’t flow as well. Choose how many plant species you want, whether you’d like paving or grass and any thing such as a water feature that may require electricity or a water connection.
If you are working to a budget – and most people who intend to sell are trying not to spend too much – look on eBay or Gumtree for people who are on-selling pavers. Sometimes the pavers may be second-hand, dug up by the previous owners as they plan to change things in their own gardens. Other times the pavers might be left over from landscapers or builders after a big job.
Choose your plant species – but not too many
You want to have a nice variety of plants in your yard, but not too many that it looks messy. A garden that has just a few choices of plants will look neater, more uniform and will be easier to maintain. If you’d like flowering plants, go for a few different colours to really add some brightness to your yard.
Freshen up the lawn
If your lawn is looking patchy or brown, it might be time to give it a bit of freshening up or replace it completely. Fresh, new lawn will always make a home look amazing and it can be done without costing too much money. You can get cheap grass varieties or you can keep an eye on any upcoming sales before you stock up.
If your current turf isn’t too bad it just needs a bit of freshening up, sprinkle some lawn seeds over the top of the existing grass.
Have a defined edge
A yard that has clearly defined edges will always look beautiful and well looked after. The edging can be pavers, stone or timber. Or it could simply be a well maintained edge on the lawn. You can use a spade to cut a sharp edge on your lawn and the effect is immediate.
Plant for privacy
If you have privacy issues in your yard, such as neighbours who can see into your garden or you are backing onto a busy road, choose your plants wisely. Try going for some hedging, or some fast growing bamboo or an evergreen tree to block the view of anyone looking in. You don’t need to wait for years for your plants to grow, spend a bit more now and get plants that are already fully grown for an immediate effect.
A bright and sunny yard is great, but always make sure there is at least one area that has shade. Shade will appeal to all potential homebuyers, from the elderly to families with young children. Shade doesn’t have to come in the form of an expensive gazebo or alfresco, you can go to your local hardware store and purchase a shade sail to install yourself.