The term "curb appeal" has been around a long time. As it relates to residential real estate the term describes how prospects feel about the appearance of a home from the street.

As Realtors we are taught to instruct home owners to "view their homes as others see them." We take the homeowner outside, across the street to evaluate the home. Some homeowners "get it" and this process is not necessary. Others fail to understand or care so the process is lost or pointless.

The importance of having good curb appeal can mean the difference between a quick sale or one that drags on for ages. Potential buyers, particularly the virtual shoppers are making snap decisions on whether or not to view a house. If the home is "ugly" from the prospect's standpoint, the home never gets a chance to compete.

Remolding Magazine's annual "Cost vs. Value Report" shows exterior and replacement projects bring the biggest return. Exterior being enhancements to the home's curb appeal.

This report validates what we have known for a long time; when preparing your home to sell, be sure it appeals to the widest market. By investing in a "home face lift" you will be putting your money where it is most likely going to get you the most traffic.

These days of virtual home shopping the importance of curb appeal and great photos of the interior are the foundation for success. Pay attention to the details that attract the buyer to actually make an appointment to visit your home in person.

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