10 Ways to Prepare Your Home for Holiday Houseguests

The holidays are finally upon us, and several people are beginning to plan their holiday feasts and parties with their friends and loved ones. Many people nationwide travel to visit with their families or friends over the course of the holidays as well, and while this can be a fun and joyous time for the host, it can also be a stressful time.

No need to stress out! Just read the following 10 tips to help you prepare your home for your guests this holiday season!

Accessorize and Arrange Conveniently – Think about what you need in your living space for guests to sit and talk comfortably. Set small side tables next to your couch and chairs in your living room so that your guests have a place to set down their drinks and phones. Bring out throw pillows on a too-deep sofa so that guests can sit comfortably. Remember when you rearrange your furniture to make it easy for your guests to converse. There’s no rule that says that everything needs to match, but do try to make all of your furniture about the same height so that the eye level is equal.

Offer Storage Space – Guests come with baggage. Well, maybe emotional baggage, but we mean ACTUAL bags and suitcases! Make sure you can accommodate them well by giving them an obvious place to store their coats and bags. Even if you don’t have a spare closet, a simple row of pegs or hooks in the foyer will be just fine.

Make Them Feel at Home – Provide a useful surface for their toiletries in your bathroom or in a nearby location. Anything from a cabinet to a table to just simple stool will let your guests feel like they don’t have to litter the bathroom sink with their hygienic or cosmetic supplies.

Cozy Up the Bedroom – Don’t forget about the guest room! Put out extra blankets to ensure that your guests get a good night’s sleep. Be sure that the sheets are washed and clean as well and that there are enough pillows to accommodate your guests’ needs.

Offer Light Reading – Sometimes it’s nice to sit down in our own space and escape for a bit. Remember to stock the guest room with light reading. Magazines and short stories are always good choices, along with shorter novels.

Deck Out the Nightstand – If at all possible, do try to provide a nightstand next to your guests’ beds. It’s always great to have a safe nearby spot to place a glass of water, glasses, or phones at night. Additionally, provide a light for reading, an alarm clock, and a box of tissues on the nightstand.

Don’t Play Hide-and-Seek With the Basics – No one likes to guess where necessities are, especially in someone else’s home. Assure that your guests can easily locate the basic necessities like towels and washcloths, toilet paper, basic foods (cereal, tea, coffee, milk, bread, etc.), blankets, and more by placing them in obvious places (or even in plain sight).

Supply Finger Foods – Give an inviting feel to your home by providing bowls of plates of nuts, fresh veggies, cheese, and pretzels on your tables. Just be sure to keep food away from curious pets!

Add a Touch of Color – Add a cheery touch to nightstands, dressers, or windowsills by displaying little vases with fresh flowers. Even small vases don’t need more than a few blossoms! This is an inexpensive and easy way to add a pop of cheer and color where it’s needed.

Offer an Extra Seat – Sometimes it’s nice to have a place to sit or set things on. If you can, add a bench or extra chair to the guest room so that your guests can place their suitcase and bags on. They’ll appreciate it!

Want more tips on how to ready your home for guests this holiday season? Looking for that dream home to accommodate all of your friends and family? Just give us a call at (618) 761-5024 or at (618) 791-9298. You can even check us out online at www.dianamasseyhomes.com to see how we can best help you. Happy holidays!

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8 Curb Appeal Ideas to Attract Homebuyers

A modern custom built luxury home in a residential neighborhood.  This upper class home is a very nicely landscaped property.

Perhaps the most important question you need to ask yourself right now if you’re selling your home is, “What will be the first thing that potential homebuyers will see?” Quickly after you ask that question, you should additionally ask yourself if the things that will attract or deter them from your home.

Usually, the first thing that homebuyers will notice when looking for homes is your front yard, the color of your home, the landscaping, and if the home has an attractive exterior. They won’t be able to see the new kitchen appliances you have or the gorgeous, original hardwood floors that are throughout your home. If your curb appeal is subpar, the homebuyers won’t even bother coming through your front door to check out the inside of your home.

But what’s a homeowner to do? Well, don’t fret and continue reading – we have 8 tips that will help you improve your curb appeal and attract homebuyers to your lovely abode pronto!

Reevaluate Your Exterior Paint – Before you even begin on your yard work, look up and check out your home’s exterior. Is the pain cracking, dingy, or old? Is it incongruent with the colors that are present in the neighborhood, or does it not matchup with the style of the home itself? If so, you might want to reevaluate your home’s paint color. If nothing else, do consider pressure washing your siding or brick; it’ll look just like new after you do so!

Keep Your Accents Fresh – Whether your house is adorned with shutters, columns, or planters, be sure that all the accents are in good condition. If there is any damage to your planters, driveway, fences, or exterior lighting, be sure to address them and repair the damaged areas.

Take Note of Walkways – Next on the list are your walkways and entryways. Are the sidewalks cracked and old? Are the stepping stone paths broken? Are weeds sprouting up in the cracks in your driveway? Consider giving extra attention to these areas. Pull the weeds, and fix any broken areas. Additionally, power wash these areas to make them look just like new once more. You’ll notice a difference right away!

Pick Up Your Toys – Curb appeal is associated with how you and your family live your lives day in and day out. Make sure that you don’t leave any objects out on the lawn, or your potential homebuyers could draw up opinions about you and how you care for your home. When you’re finished with gardening tools, put them away immediately. The same goes for your children’s toys – be sure to teach them to put them away when they’re done playing with them. This will help prevent your lawn from appearing unkempt.

Love Your Lawn – Now it’s time to look at your lawn. How do your plants, grass, and surrounding areas look? Does your lawn look beautifully-kept or like a scraggly eyesore to the unbiased eye? Be sure to pull weeds where you can and fix unsightly areas in your yard, and consider employing new landscaping in your yard if it looks a little, well, sad in the landscaping department.

Out With the Old – This may seem kind of crazy, but even the simplest things like your mailbox or house numbers can turn a buyer off. If you’ve lived in your home for a while now (or if your mailbox has seen better days), replace your old mailbox and house numbers with new, more inviting ones!

Add a Pop of Color – Does your home need some extra color? Add an instant pop of color with planters filled with seasonal plants at your front door, in your yard, or at the sides of your garage. The plants will make future homebuyers happy to see what else is inside!

When trying to revamp your curb appeal, remember that it doesn’t have to be difficult or cost you al lot of money. If you’re having trouble attracting homebuyers, try the 8 tips above to help, or go ahead and give us a call at (618) 791-5024 or (618) 791-9298! You can also visit us online at www.dianamasseyhomes.com to see how we can help you sell your home and get the dream home you’ve always wanted!

Need To Sell Your Home? Consider Repainting Your Walls!

 

Red Paint Can with Brush Top View Isolated On White Background.

We all know that your curb appeal is what attracts potential home buyers to your home, but do you know what can turn them off just as soon as they enter your home? Bold, dark, and overwhelming paint colors!

If you want to sell your home and your house is lavished with dark or bold paint colors, consider repainting your walls to impress your potential buyers and have them biting at the bit to buy your house!

But which shades of color should you go for? How do you go about selecting the perfect paint colors for your home when there are so many different shades to choose from? Simple! Just follow the below tips for a good guideline to selecting the colors that work best for you!

Think Like a Buyer – It can be very difficult to think about your home objectively, but it’s one of the best strategies that you can employ when trying to shape your home in the customer’s liking. Try putting yourself in the potential buyer’s shoes to decide which colors need to be changed in your home. Remember, you want the buyer to focus on the amount of square footage in your home, the house’s unique architecture, and how great you are at keeping the interior well-maintained, NOT on the wall color! Your buyer needs to think, “I can see myself living here today!” instead of, “I’ll have to paint every single room in this house – it’s too much work for me!”

Keep Your Colors Neutral – So how do you take your potential home buyer’s focus off the walls and onto the square footage or anything else you’d want them to see? Why, by choosing neutral colors for your walls, of course! But before you groan and cry out about injustice to your creative, color-loving side, keep in mind that neutral colors do NOT necessarily mean shades of white or beige. Neutral colors can also include subdued, welcoming shades of brown, gray, and green! Just keep in mind which colors would coordinate the best with what you already have in your home to make your home feel larger and more updated.

Stage Your Home For Success – There’s no doubt that the housing market’s conditions aren’t the best still. In these difficult, competitive times, sellers need to go above and beyond of what it typically takes to prepare their homes for selling. The easiest, most cost-effective way you can do this is by staging your home, and a huge part of that is painting your walls the aforementioned neutral hues. The next most effective thing you can do is to de-clutter your home (no one likes to see messy bedrooms, offices, and closets!). Even experts feel that if the home is staged it will sell more quickly and for higher prices than the homes that aren’t staged.

Want to sell your home? Need more tips on how to stage your home? Have no fear! Just call us at (618) 791-5024 or at (618) 791-9298 or check out our website at www.dianamasseyhomes.com to see how we can help you!

The 9 Things That Might Be Scaring Home Buyers Away From Your Home

 

Are you having trouble getting people interested in your for-sale home? Have people already walked through your home but showed zero interest in buying it, let alone putting down an offer for it?

You may not realize it, but there may be some things about your home or that you’re doing (or failing to do) to your home that might be scaring away any potential home buyers. Are you guilty of committing one of these nine crimes?

1. Your Curb Appeal is UGLY – And we mean ugly with a capital “U!” If you have shingles falling off your roof, junk scattered in your yard, or weeds taking over your sidewalks and driveway, you may be stopping any potential buyers cold in their tracks. When home buyers see that the outside of a prospective home is unkempt or just plain frightening, they figure that the inside of the home will look the same (or even worse). Be sure to enhance your curb appeal by planting some beautiful flowers, caring for your lawn, putting out a new and inviting welcome mat, and so much more!

2. Your House Stinks (Literally) – Odors can kill the mood and dismantle the enchantment of house hunting in a quick second. If you happen to smoke inside your home, that stench will permeate your entire home from your furniture and carpet to the drapes and even the walls! Pets and mold can also leave horrible stenches that can turn potential buyers off, sometimes permanently. If you’re not sure if your home smells, ask a neighbor or a friend to come over to offer their opinion.

3. Your Bathroom is Filthy – No one likes gross, dirty bathrooms, especially potential home buyers. Make sure that you clean the bathroom thoroughly before you have home buyers in your home. Replace any old fixtures and gross shower curtains, and be sure that your bathroom is presentable and squeaky clean.

4. You’re a Fan of Wallpaper  – Wallpaper is a personal taste, and most of the time it repels buyers, especially if the wallpaper is in every single room of the house. If you really want your home to sell, take the time to remove the wallpaper and put on a coat of neutral paint. DO NOT paint over the wallpaper! It will be obvious that you painted over the wallpaper AND it will be more difficult to remove.

5. You Have Pets – Dogs may be cute, but some people don’t like them or are simply afraid of them. Many people don’t enjoy being jumped up or licked profusely by dogs when entering homes. If you can, remove your pets during showings to show respect to the potential home buyers.

6. You Have a Love of Bold or Dark Wall Paint Colors – Some people love dark or bold paint colors. That’s perfectly fine… that is, unless you’re selling your home! Buyers try to picture their own stuff in your home, and it’s very difficult to envision if your bold wall colors overpower their senses. For the best results, paint your walls neutral colors (which, by the way, doesn’t mean just white or beige!). Remember, you want your potential buyer to focus on the square footage and other positive attributes of your home, not be distracted by the wall colors!

7. Your Home is Overpriced – No matter how much you love your home, if you have it overpriced it will be a rare occurrence if someone serious wants to come take a look. The smart thing to do is to price it correctly the first time and stick with it. If you overprice it but keep dropping the price over time, home buyers may see you as desperate to sell your home.

8. BUGS – Want a guaranteed way to shoe buyers right out of your home? INSECTS. If you have any insect problems, mice, or cockroaches, don’t count on any home buyers stopping by or sticking around if they do come in. If you can’t get rid of these pests yourself, do yourself a favor and call a professional.

9. You NEVER Leave The Buyer Alone – Can you say, “AWKWARD?!” Give your buyers some space and freedom to check out your home unescorted. If you hang around them all the time, they won’t feel free to explore and will feel as if they are unwelcomed guests.

Looking to sell your home? Need some more tips to make your house look the best it can look? Give us a call at (618) 791-5024 or at (618) 791-9898 or check out our website at www.dianamasseyhomes.com to see how we can help you. Stop committing these nine crimes and start selling your home today!

Open Houses – Friend or Foe? You Decide!

 

Open house.

These two little words are known for striking fear in the hearts of many and enthusiasm in the minds of several others. While they are very fun and informative events, they shouldn’t be taken lightly – they can be very stressful to prepare for and host!

While open houses can be stressful events for anyone involved (except the observers, perhaps), they can be advantageous for both the seller and the realtor involved.

Before you jump on having an open house, however, do make your decision with utmost care! There are many ups and downs to having an open house. The question is – do the pros outweigh the cons? See for yourself!

PROS

#1 – Open Houses are Open To All: The name says it all – it’s an OPEN house for all to come in and check out! And it isn’t just the prospective buyers who attend the open house – the brokers who might want to team up on the sale also attend, and they tend to give advice on ways to help the home sell faster! Besides, just because an attendee isn’t a prospective buyer doesn’t mean that an open house showing off your home’s beauty won’t fan the flames of desire to buy the home!

#2 – They Provide You With More Exposure: Open houses will help give your home the exposure it needs in less time. They give any potential buyer an opportunity to come over and check our your home, even if you currently lack an agent! While the chances of receiving a serious bid is rather slim, hosting an open house will drawn in people, especially if your home is put at the right price!

#3 – Open Houses Force You to Pretty Up Your Home: If there’s anything that will make you whip your house into a beautiful, spotless piece of perfection (besides maybe showcasing your home on national television), an open house definitely does the trick. Your home should be as clean as possible, top to bottom, so that you can impress the masses, letting them leave wanting more.

#4 – Open Houses Give Viewers Real-Life Browsing of the Home: While people can easily view houses quite quickly on the Internet, there’s just nothing like seeing the home in person. Sure, they can see that your bedroom is blue and has a nice closet, but they can’t see how the blue looks when the afternoon sun comes in through the window or how spacious that closet really is.

#5 – You Can Find New Customers: Many times, an open house is the event in which you can find a potential buyer who can wander in right off the street. You never know who will be curious about your home, fall in love with it, and ultimately want to buy it!

CONS

#1 – Open Houses Rarely Produce a Bid: Many brokers (and even homeowners) tend to agree that open houses aren’t the best way to sell a home. It can spark curiosity in potential buyers, but rarely does someone wander in, check out the house, and place a bid on the home to purchase. After all, buying a home is a very serious decision homeowners must make!

#2 – Open Houses Can Attract Nosy Neighbors: Open houses allow anyone from anywhere to come in and check out your home. This doesn’t exclude your lovely, nosy neighbors who are simply dying to see exactly what you’ve done to your home (and maybe gossip about it to their friends or to the previous homeowner, if they still have stayed in touch).

#3 – Open Houses Can Also Attract Thieves: Not to scare you into not having an open house, but you must keep in mind that hosting an open house is an open invitation for ANYONE to enter your home. Be sure to hide away all of your valuables and breakables. Don’t leave loose change or bills lying around on countertops. But don’t fret – many brokers and agents now require all potential buyers to either show a form of identification or to sign in before they look at your home.

#4 – The Internet Has Made Open Houses Less Effective: Ten or so years ago, open houses were the thing to do to show off your home to the public to pique interest in any potential buyers – and it was pretty effective, too! Now people tend to use the Internet as their way of viewing a home before they want to come see it for themselves.

#5 – Open Houses Can Be Very Stressful: First impressions are more important now than ever these days. Making sure your home looks picture-perfect to the public can drive you up the wall. And after you clean your home, you’ll more than likely need to clean again after everyone leaves.

So are open houses advantageous or a disaster waiting to happen? Tell us what you think! And if you’re thinking about hosting an open house and would like help or if you’re wanting to sell your current home, call us at The Massey Team at (618) 791-5024 or at (618) 791-9898! You can even check us out at our website at www.dianamasseyteams.com. Let us help you sell your home TODAY!

Want To Sell Your Home? Turn Your Yard From Boring To Beautiful!

What is the first thing that buyers see when they see your property? Why, the outside, of course!

Landscaping can greatly influence how a potential buyer may feel about your home; sometimes it can be the end-all point that makes them buy the house or quickly turn around to look for another home. Luckily, a few simple changes can improve the curb appeal of your property and change the “For Sale” sign in your yard to a “Sold” sign!

Put That Power Washer to Good Use! Some areas of our home (including the outside) tend to remain perpetually “clean” in our minds, but we should really try to break that misconception trying to sell! Believe it or not, your deck, driveway, and home exterior can get pretty dirty over time, dulling your home’s colors and liveliness slowly but surely.

The best way to brighten these spaces of your home is by using a power washer. When the first wave of water hits, you’ll be shocked at how much brighter you’re deck, driveway, and exterior look! While a power washer is a great tool, it needs to be used with care – it admits extremely high pressure that can harm skin and housing materials if used unwisely.

Make Your Home “Inviting! – Nothing says “home” like a wreath and a welcome mat! Wreaths and welcome mats are an inexpensive touch to add to your home to draw any potential buyers in. Feel free to get creative by making your own wreath or find an inviting wreath at your favorite store. Already have your own mats and wreaths and don’t want to part with them? No problem! Simply clean them up so that they look like new again!

Give Your Home the Green Treatment – Who doesn’t love greenery and flowers? Not very many people! Done correctly and artfully, greenery may be the trick to landscaping your home to sell. Don’t have a green thumb? Don’t worry! You can easily make it look like you do! When you go to purchase your greenery ask the staff member which plants and flowers are the easiest to maintain. All you need to worry about is picking out the right color of pots to complement your home and watering them to their specifications! Now THAT was easy!

Flowers are a Home’s Best Friend – Picking where to place the plants and flowers you have bought can be difficult to do sometimes! When you’re setting them out, put yourself in the buyer’s shoes. Lining the walkway to the house with pretty flowers can be really inviting to anyone – potential buyer and visitors alike. If you love gardening, then feel free to plant more flowers! Don’t panic if gardening isn’t up your alley – a little really DOES go a long way! (Oh, and here’s a fun tip from us – Place the brightest flowers closest to your entryway to make both the color of your home AND the flowers stand out!)

Make Your Yard into a Work of Art – Greenery is all good and dandy, but don’t feel like you need to turn your yard into a jungle! Try using some landscaping stone as a way to make your yard look even more beautiful! Create inviting walkways with irregularly shaped stones. Frame your flowerbeds with the stones acting as a border. If you feel like stepping a bit out of the box, try creating a mini-waterfall in your yard and fill the basin with koi! If you’re unsure of how to do this, you might want to either read up on the details or call a professional to help make your yard look beautiful.

Say Good-Bye to Overgrown Lawns! – Finally, be sure to tame any wild shrubberies and trees. Greenery is good, but a mess of it can be counterproductive and a huge turn-off to your potential buyers! When your house is on the market, take a couple extra hours to trim and shape any bushes and trees around your home. Make sure that they complement all the hard work you have put into making your home sellable!

If you are looking for your dream home The Massey Team can help you! Contact us today at 618-791-5024. You can also find us on Facebook and Twitter or visit our website at www.dianamasseyhomes.com to see how we can help you!

Do You Know What To Do on a Final Walkthrough? You May Be Missing Something!

 

It truly is an exciting time in one’s life to make an offer on the house of his or her dreams and actually claiming possession of it. But did you know that sometimes weeks or even months can pass between the time that you make an offer on your dream house and the day you actually take possession on it?

In that span of time, all sorts of occurrences can happen in the home and affect its condition. Maybe the fridge, which was on its last leg, finally died. Perhaps a family member accidentally spilled red wine on the living room’s beautiful, spotless white carpet. Or perhaps a bad storm caused a large limb from a nearby looming tree to crash into the roof.

That’s why it’s vital for you to do a final walkthrough before the house officially becomes yours, because with that house comes all the unnoticed or unrepaired problems, which will be all yours to take care of!

Not sure what to look for during the walkthrough? No problem! Here is a checklist to help you check the different parts in the home:

Outside the Home:

*Inspect the exterior – this includes the roof, shutters, trim, siding, and so on.

*Check the grounds to see if the trees and landscaping are the same as when you made the offer.

*Inspect the driveway and any walkways or sidewalks.

 

Inside the Home:

Interior Rooms (bedrooms, living, dining, family rooms, etc.)

*Open, close, lock, and unlock all the doors and windows. Check for missing or damaged window screens and damage to the doors.

*Inspect the floors, walls, and ceilings for any water damage and physical damage since you made your offer.

*Inspect the carpets.

*Inspect the closets. Make sure they are all cleaned out.

Kitchen

*Make sure the fridge works.

*Make sure the dishwasher works.

*Turn on the oven and the stove’s burners, and test the light and fan on the range hood.

*Check the garbage disposal.

*Test any other appliances

*Check for clogged drains and for any leaks, and run both hot and cold water in the sink.

Bathroom

*Run the water in the sink to check the water pressure, and check under the sink for leaks as the water runs.

*Turn on the faucets in the tub or shower.

*Check for clogged drains.
*Turn on the exhaust fan if there is one.

*Flush the toilet.

Utility Room – Make sure the washer and dryer work!

Garage – Test the automatic door opener, and open, close, lock, and unlock any and all doors.

Attic and basement – Check to make sure there is no visible mold, let alone any areas that are damp or smell musty.

Electrical system

*Test each light switch.

*Test each ceiling fan and exhaust fan.

*Test the electrical outlets.

Heating and cooling systems –Make sure the heat and air conditioning work by testing the thermostat.

Miscellaneous

*Be sure that no trash or debris has been left behind.

*Check that the previous owner has made good on all the agreed-upon repairs.

*Ring the doorbell. You need to know when you have visitors to see your new house!

*Test the security system if there is one. Be sure that it has your phone number as the designated contact.

*Test all railings in the home.

*Make sure the fireplace is clean if there is one.

*Be sure you have all of the owner’s manuals for the major appliances such as the furnace, a/c, fridge, and so on.

*Take your time. Your goal is to make sure that the house is in the same condition as when you made your offer. If you took pictures when you toured the home, take those pictures along with you in the final walkthrough for comparison.

If you have further questions about a final walkthrough or if you are wanting to find your dream home, call us here at The Massey Team at (618) 791-5024 or at (618) 791-9298. Visit us also at our website at www.dianamasseyhomes.com to see available dream homes in a neighborhood near you!

Looking For Your Dream Home? We’ve Got It!

Looking For Your Dream Home? We've Got It!When you think about your dream home, what pops into your mind? A gorgeous mansion with servants? A seaside condo situated right in front of your favorite ocean? A cute cottage with a lush garden? Or maybe even a quirky, one-of-a-kind home equipped with fun features like an indoor water slide and book nooks galore?

Fellow dream home hunters, we have great news for you! We now have a wonderful home on our listing that is EVERYONE’s dream home to own!

This dream home, which was built in 2001, is located on 2009 Golf Course View Drive, here in Edwardsville, Illinois, and it has anything and everything you could possibly need or want! It’s located above the 5th tee at Sunset Hills Country Club, and it has all the curb appeal a home should have, and then some.

Looking For Your Dream Home? We've Got It!You’ll never be spare of any rooms or bathrooms in this dream home! Featured are three bedrooms, five bedrooms (two full, two ¾, and one half-bath), and many other rooms, including a large family room, living room, dining room, spacious kitchen with plenty of counter space, and four additional rooms!

Looking For Your Dream Home? We've Got It!The amenities in this home include a pool with remote features (oh, and it’s heated, too!), over-the-top equipped master suite, spa, wine cellar, and LED accented fireplaces, which provide the perfect stage for living elegantly.

We haven’t even told you about the outside yet (well, okay, the pool is located outside)! Features included outside are a concrete driveway, an exterior finish of brick and stone, a lot size of 145.73 by 205, street lights, storm sewers, sprinklers, curbs and gutters, a paved road, and underground utilities.

Looking For Your Dream Home? We've Got It!“So how much is this amazing home?” you may ask. Well, this amazing, spacious, home of your dreams can be yours for $995,000. It also has 1.8 in it, and it is a short sale, so act quickly!

If you’re interested in seeing this home on a private tour, then call us here at (618) 791-5024 or at (618) 791-9298, and we can get you set up as soon as possible! You can even visit this listing on our website at http://www.dianamasseyhomes.com/Listings/0/241565/IL/EDWARDSVILLE/2009-GOLF-COURSE-VIEW-Drive.aspx! Don’t let this too-good-to-be-true offer slip by – call today!

Ten Ways To Add Curb Appeal to Your Humble Abode!

 

You know how a house has great curb appeal? Every time you walk or drive by it, you just can’t help staring at it. You might even find yourself stopped in front of it, jaw agape and drooling at its beauty. In fact, you might even find yourself driving by that house more and more, simply to look at it and lament that your house is nowhere near as awesome as “that house.”

Luckily for you, there are quite a few easy and relatively cheap ways you can increase your own home’s curb appeal and make a great first impression on others! Check out these ten improvements you can do in a day, a week, or a month below!

CURB APPEAL IN A DAY:

Focus On the Front Door – Your front door is the focal point of your home and reflects your home’s interior, so be sure that it looks the way you want it to! Clean off all dirty spots around the knob, polish the fixtures, and paint your door a bold or zippy new color!

Makeover Your Mailbox – Is your mailbox sad-looking? Does it just scream, “Hey, kids, come hit me with a bat!”? If so, you need to do some serious work! Your mailbox isn’t just for receiving mail – it’s also there to complement your home and express your personality. Spring for a new mailbox or give it a facelift with paint and new house numbers.

Install Outdoor Lighting – Low voltage landscape lighting will make a huge impact on your home and can also provide you with added security. Light fixtures can add accent lighting on plants, trees, or the house, and they can also illuminate a walking path for visitors to see. Can’t use wired lights? Try out solar fixtures! Just be aware that the light levels won’t be as bright as wired lights.

Add Some Plant Life to the Scene – Plants add a punch of color to your curb appeal quickly and affordably. You can buy ready-made containers from a nearby garden center or grow your own favorite plants. Try to incorporate leafy plants with flowering plants in an asymmetrical arrangement to create a dynamic ambiance.

CURB APPEAL IN A WEEKEND:

Add Outdoor Art – You don’t need to become Van Gogh to make your yard look beautiful! Simply choose weather-resistant pieces of art that complement your home. Find a birdbath or sculptures that you love to set outside, and add music to the air by tacking on a wind chime! You can even add water sculptures – just e sure that they’re out of any leaf-dropping range!

Replace Gutters and Downspouts – Are your gutters peeling paint or have rust spots? Are your downspouts nearing non-function? Time to fix them up! Replace your old gutter system with newer, snap-fit vinyl gutters. You can put them together with few tools and no painting! You will boost your curb appeal and help prevent basement flooding when you replace those old gutters of yours!

Create New Planting Beds – If you don’t have a planting bed in place, you should get to it right away! The best places to have a planting bed include in front of the house, along driveways and walkways, and in the front corner of the yard. Choose features for the bed that will frame your home, not block it off. Edge the bed with stone and include a different arrangement of plants in size, color, and texture.

IN A MONTH

Renew Painting, Trim, and Siding – Give that house of yours a well-needed facelift with new paint, siding, and trim! Any cracked or rotting material will automatically downgrade a home’s curb appeal and chase away potential buyers, so do your best to maintain your home’s exterior. You’ll be amazed how your home’s look will be transformed with just a fresh coat of paint and trim!

Make Your Walkway More Inviting – There are several ways you can make your walkways better. You can dress them up with brick and stone borders (and maybe plant a few small flowers on the side), or you can replace your straight, boring concrete path with a dynamic, contoured one made out of brick or stone!

Show Love to Your Driveway – Give your driveway an upgrade without breaking the bank! Repair any cracks and stains and pull weeds out of the driveway. You can then stain the driveway’s concrete, place flagstones nearby, or plant more flora on the sides.

Remember, by adding more curb appeal to your home, you are not only upgrading its price but also enticing potential buyers to come by and check out your home!

If you’re ready to sell your home or maybe want a few ideas for adding more curb appeal, call us here at (618) 791-5024 or at (618) 791-9298. You can even visit us at our website at www.dianamasseyhomes.com to see what we can do for you!

Successfully Sell Your Home By Staging It For All 5 Senses!

Modern dining room with hanging lamps on, there are chairs and table setup with fancy items on the wooden floorIt’s no lie – the real estate market is tough these days, especially when it comes to selling your house. Don’t feel deterred by this fact, though – it doesn’t mean that you won’t be able to ever sell your house. It simply means that you need to be creative with how you’re PRESENTING it to others.

That’s right – it’s time for you to discover the not-so-new power of “staging!”

Think of it as a job interview for your house, so to speak. When you come to an interview, you need to be prepared for any questions that come your way, look your best, and, most importantly these days, be memorable. You have to make sure your house stands out against all the other houses out there on the market to ensure that you have customers chomping at the bit to buy your lovely home!

Check out the following tips to ensure that your house is appealing to all five senses of your customers!

SIGHT – This is a given, but it needs to be said anyway – you need to make sure all of the rooms in your home are nice and tidy and uncluttered (this goes for closets, too!). A tidy, organized room allows the customer to not only be in a calm frame of mind but also picture how the rooms could look in their hands. While you’re at it, it would be best to replace personal pictures, trophies and awards, and your children’s artwork with simple, classic décor so your customer can really envision their own lives in your home. If you have any stained or damaged furniture, be sure to clean it up or at least cover your furniture with slipcovers.

SOUND – This sense could be a bit more difficult to appeal to in certain circumstances. If you have an open house, you could incorporate some soft classical music to play lightly in the background so your customers feel more at ease. For smaller, more intimate sales, do your best to ensure that there are no barking dogs in your home, and remember to turn off noisy equipment, along with televisions, radios, and washers and dryers. In this case, silence is golden!

SMELL – Each and every room should smell clean, but you will want to avoid the smells of harsh chemicals like bleach and glass cleaners! Opt for more pleasant scents – consider using candles or simple air fresheners to create a calm, inviting ambiance. If you smoke or have pets, you’ll have to do some extra work to make potential buyers feel more at home. Dander and smoke can permeate furniture, carpets, and even walls! Take your dog out for the day, and do your best to eradicate the smells by cleaning the carpets and repainting the walls.

TASTE – You can think of open houses as a fun little party! Be a giving homeowner and provide your “guests” with food and drinks alike. Be sure you have enough finger foods to go around (make sure that they’re not messy, though!). If you have a small showing going on, the aroma of freshly baked brownies or cookies can make your potential buyer feel right at home and salivating for more!

TOUCH – Think about everything your customer could touch – doorknobs, handles, doors, handrails, tiles, and much more. Be aware if you have any broken or chipped tiles, loose or missing handles or knobs, or any wobbly and unsecured handrails – these prove to be red flags to a potential buyer. Make any and all minor repairs before you show your home!

By stimulating the senses and creating a calming ambiance through staging, you are drawing your buyer in and helping them envision themselves in your home! Done right, this can be a sure-fire way to find yourself a buyer!

If you’re ready to sell your house, be sure to give us a call here at (618) 791-5024 or at (618) 791-9298 or visit us at our website at www.dianamasseyhomes.com for more information! We’d be more than happy to help you sell your home so you may find your dream home!