We are involved in real estate transactions throughout DeRidder, Leesville, Fort Polk, and beyond. We see tons of houses every year. The one thing they all have in common is this: the relationship between curb appeal and buyer interest. If you want to sell your home, it needs to have curb appeal. If you are buying a home, curb appeal sets the stage for everything else.
Before explaining why curb appeal is so important to real estate sales, let us talk about what it actually is. Curb appeal is the appeal of a home from the street. It is something we all take into account – often without even knowing it – whenever we are driving around town.
When you see a house from the street, your brain instantly forms an image of it. You expect that what you could see inside the house should resemble what you are seeing from the curb. As such, your first view of a house from the street unconsciously tells you what to expect should you walk in the front door.
First Impressions Are Everything
You’ve heard that first impressions are important in business. They are important to personal relationships. In real estate, they are everything. That’s why real estate agents work so hard to create positive first impressions. They know that a positive first impression sets the stage for a potential purchase. The opposite is also true.
At this point, we should acknowledge that first impressions are as much about the current homeowner as they are the house itself. Let’s say you have a young couple approaching a house that is kept up very well. In fact, it is in immaculate condition. That couple will just assume that the current homeowner is a person with certain positive character traits. Whether or not this is right or wrong isn’t the point. The point is that first impressions are reality.
Imagination Goes a Long Way
Curb appeal also plays into the idea of helping spark a buyer’s imagination. We real estate pros have known for a long time that buyers, whether intentionally or unintentionally, imagine themselves living in a home that they are viewing. That’s why they talk about who will get which bedroom and how they can arrange all their furniture in the living room.
Here’s the dirty little secret about that: it’s harder to sell your home if potential buyers can’t imagine themselves living there. Now, let us associate that with curb appeal.
A home that isn’t appealing from the street immediately presents a difficulty for potential buyers. It’s not that they can or cannot imagine themselves living there. It is more a question of, why would they? If they find a home unappealing, why go through the emotional trauma of imagining themselves living there only to walk out the door after the tour is absolutely dead set against buying.
The View Is Your Introduction
If you are thinking of selling your home, understand that the view from the curb is your introduction to potential buyers. Whether they look online or review your home in person, the first view they will have is from the curb. You want to set the stage for a positive experience by offering an excellent view.
Curb appeal is extremely important in real estate transactions. A property that offers plenty of positive appeal is more attractive to buyers and vice-versa. That being the case, don’t even think about selling until your curb appeal is where it needs to be. And if you are buying, be willing to look past curb appeal to some extent. After all, you can’t always judge a book by its cover.