While you may be great at interior design, window treatments and choosing paint colors, don’t ignore your front yard. While you may think that the term “curb appeal” is a meaningless cliché, the way your home looks to others from the outside can mean the difference between a sale and many extra days on the market. Here are some reasons why you should pay attention to the way your home is presented from a distance.

Those That Drive By

Searching for a home in Southern California can be a blur, and after a while, all of those three-bedroom ranches seem to look the same–except those that are striking from the outside. While homebuyers start out the day with enthusiasm and will take the time to look at all properties presented to them, by the time the afternoon rolls around, they may instantly reject anything that looks ugly and unkempt. If you have a palace inside, but you don’t have foundation plantings in your yard, even a “Must See Inside” sign may be ignored by prospective buyers.

Online

It’s an online world now, and even if Photoshop can make the sky a deep blue and your home look warmly lit, it’s tough to make an ugly landscape look nice. So many prospective buyers make their own home viewing possibilities from online listings that if your property looks plain, it may be ignored.

Overcoming Other Issues

A great yard may take significant weekly maintenance time, but some find perfect grass and flowing landscapes very alluring and may fall in love with your property even before setting foot in it. If they like the outside but the interior needs work, some buyers may overlook the interior flaws because the yard is so nice.

Value

A great yard can add serious value to your home. A major landscaping job can cost more than $15,000, and if nothing needs to be done outside, that can justify a higher purchase price. Furthermore, that’s $15,000 that someone doesn’t have to spend on your home after they purchase it.

What I Have Always Wanted

Some people just cannot grow grass. They don’t know how to water, how to over-seed, how to aerate, what grass type to plant and how to generally maintain a great outdoor yard. That said, they may have always wanted to have the best yard on the block and that may be enough to get them to make an offer on your property. Of course, you may need to give them a thorough tutorial about yard maintenance if they do decide to move in so that your hard work won’t quickly deteriorate.

Granite countertops, hard wood floors, smart appliances and thermostats along with a great school district can all help sell your home. Don’t neglect your yard, however, because that is the first thing prospective buyers see. If you are not comfortable with a DIY yard, find a contractor to do the job. The value you add by paying attention to curb appeal is well worth the money you spend.

Overall, it doesn’t matter where your buyer is coming from when they see your house. They could be moving from a small apartment in Houston, Texas or a Southern California four-bedroom house; either way curb appeal is going to get them in the door as a potential buyer. Take your time and work hard on your home’s curb appeal to enhance your chances of find a great buyer!