How to Improve Your Chicago Home's Curb Appeal

If you’ve been preparing your Chicago home for the market, you’ve likely spent a great deal of time and money on improvements, renovations and staging. The interior of your property is immaculate—devoid of any discernable flaws that could be detected by even the pickiest of buyers.

But unless you’ve taken time to heighten your home’s curb appeal, you’re not done yet. No matter how perfect the inside of your home is, if you neglect its exterior appearance, you risk turning buyers off before they ever step inside.

The good news? Upping your Chicago home’s curb appeal requires only a fraction of the effort and cost you spent on the interior. In fact, there are a number of small do-it-yourself projects that can be completed in a couple of days, on a minimal budget. Set aside a weekend, get the whole family involved, and when it’s done you’ll feel like you had a more active role in your home’s improvement.

The first step is to simply stand on the curb and observe your home from the perspective of a potential buyer. What aspects of your home’s exterior immediately stick out as dated or unattractive? Oftentimes you can increase your home’s attractiveness tenfold simply by replacing an old, rusty door or by painting peeling windowsills.

You may find that replacing all visible hardware around the outside of your home will freshen up the overall look a bit. Adding new light fixtures, door knobs, door handles, mailboxes and even address numbers is a great way to update the look of your home.

Adding shutters to bare windows is a quick, inexpensive way to transform the overall look of your home’s exterior. If your window headers are painted with outdated colors, consider covering them up with something warmer. Also, consider adding an unexpected architectural embellishment like a gable pediment or porch brackets and you may increase the intrigue of your home’s exterior.

Even if you don’t want to add new details to your home or replace hardware, make sure, at the very least, that the most visible aspects of your home are well-tended and clean. Patchy, unattractive driveways should be refilled; unruly shrubs and bushes cut back; and gardens tended to. It doesn’t take much to ensure that your home looks good from the curb, but it’s an area that should not be neglected when trying to sell your Chicago home.

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