green lawn and garden easy-to-do landscaping tips to help sell your house

Easy-To-Do Landscaping Tips to Help Sell Your House

Home » landscaping & outdoors


What is the best way to go about beautifying your yard? There are so many variables with do-it-yourself landscaping, such as budget, climate, level of skill and knowledge, and personal tastes. Maybe you’re landscaping for your own use and enjoyment, or to help sell your house. Either way, here are some easy landscaping tips to help you get started.

Before You Plant, Sketch

It is incredible the difference a well-laid-out plan makes when landscaping. Research ideas and note what you like or do not like. Sketch a design to help you plan each phase in a series of steps. You do not need to be an artist; a basic sketch of what goes where is enough. This way, you can tackle one section of your yard at a time, keeping you from feeling overwhelmed.

Year-Round Appeal

Your goal is to plant a yard with year-round interest: this means flowering plants in the spring and summer, fall foliage in autumn, and good makeup in winter. Consider these options:

  • Bulbs and flowering trees in spring;
  • Colorful annuals and a lush lawn in summer;
  • Perennials and deciduous trees in the fall; and
  • Evergreens in winter.

Evergreens are popular because they retain their leaves and needles and green appeal all year round.

Layer Flowerbeds

To create vibrant pops of color and a sense of unity across your yard, layer your flowerbeds. Layering means you plant the tallest plants in the back, and each forward row is shorter. It also provides shape and texture to your flowerbeds, making them a pleasant visual focal point.

Connect Points of Interest with a Path

Lay walking paths between high-traffic areas, like the back door and garage, or the curb and front door. Also, protect your lawn from trampling feet by putting down attractive walkways of wood or stone. These, then, connect elements of your landscape for easy viewing and enjoyment.

Incorporate Hardscaping

Hardscaping refers to any decorative or practical structure, like a driveway, fence, or patio. These features help balance and tie together the softer features of your yard. For example, fences help frame your yard and contain all the elements to one visual space.

There is a heightened interest among house buyers to interact with the outdoors. A patio or deck helps tie the inside with the outside of the house and elevates your backyard. You can recoup 75% of a deck’s cost upon sale of the house, while for a patio, the return ranges anywhere from 30% to 60%.

Clean and Maintain

Both your front yard and backyard need attention, not just every season, but at least every other week. This includes regular weeding, mowing, pruning, and raking of leaves. Consider hiring professionals to do the maintenance if you lead a busy life.

The good news is regular lawn care recovers an estimated 267% of the upkeep costs when you sell your house.

Save Money, Sell to an Investor

If you are getting ready to sell, you can forgo landscaping and other house projects by selling to an investor. Most investors will make a cash offer on the house AS-IS, without repairs, renovations, or landscaping. You can enjoy a quick closing and spend your money instead on beautifying the outside of your next home.

patio ways to elevate your backyard (and outdoor spaces)

Ways to Elevate Your Backyard (and Outdoor Spaces)

Home » landscaping & outdoors


Your backyard is just as important as the interior of your home. If you are thinking of selling in the future, 67% of buyers say a private outdoor space is essential in their home search. They want a safe space for pets and children to play and to entertain and promote healthy living. Here are 7 ideas to elevate your backyard and outdoor spaces.

1. Build a Patio or Deck

The average ROI for a professional deck is around 75%, and between 30% to 60% for a patio. What’s the difference? A patio is paved, while a deck is a platform made from lumber or composite. Both increase the square footage of your house and create a space in the fresh air to visit with guests. You can also add furniture or a creative cover, like an awning, pergola, or canopy, to your deck or patio to enhance the space.

2. Outdoor Kitchen

If you love entertaining and cooking, you will love an outdoor kitchen. Rather than go in and out of the house, you can serve and entertain guests seamlessly in one place. Alfresco kitchens are fully functional and can include cabinetry, a grill, bar, wine fridge, or wood-fired pizza oven.

3. Swimming Pool

A water escape is great if you live in a hot climate. Special features, like pool seats, waterfalls, and lighting, also enhance your pool’s appearance. Just know: a pool does not increase your home value any more than 7%, so only put one in if you plan to enjoy it for a couple years.

4. Fire Pit

Spark up warmth and memories around an outdoor fireplace or fire pit. These require little maintenance, are tasteful, and great for every occasion and season. You can spend hours of quality time around one, making conversation and delicious s’mores, and get a sense of the great outdoors in your own backyard.

5. Cultivate a Garden

Gardening cultivates good physical and mental health. Gardens elevate your outdoor spaces with greenery and colorful flowers. You can also plant a produce garden. It will give you fresh, organic food, and you’ll feel good about the fruits of your labor.

6. Build a Better Fence

Good fences make great neighbors. You care about your privacy, right? You want to feel safe and know your activities are your own, and not privy to snoopy neighbors. Build a tall, sturdy fence to contain your backyard oasis and keep children and pets safe.

7. Add Ambient Lighting

The right lights and lighting features can make your outside feel like an extension of your home. They help highlight other features, and promote a sense of awareness and safety at night.

Elevate Your Sale, Sell to an Investor

Elevating your outdoor spaces is great if you plan on living in the house for the next three to five years. Otherwise, don’t waste money on what you won’t enjoy. Instead, elevate your sale by selling to an investor.

Most investors make a cash offer on a house AS-IS. Your backyard can be a brown plot, dead and unkempt. An investor will still buy the house and fix the outdoor spaces themselves. The interior of your house can also be neglected or mid-renovation, and an investor will still make an offer. You can enjoy a quick closing and use the money to elevate the backyard of your next house.

luxury bathroom upgrades that will not increase home value

7 Upgrades That Will NOT Increase Home Value

Home » landscaping & outdoors


Some upgrades improve the value of your house, while others do not. Some may even decrease its value. Here are seven home improvements to avoid if you are thinking about selling your property.

1. Adding a Sunroom

Sunrooms are a great space to enjoy the outdoors away from bugs and the elements. Building a sunroom is expensive, ranging anywhere from $30K to $70K, depending on its features. It is a beautiful addition, but has one of the lowest returns on investment (ROI).

2. Luxury Bathroom Upgrades

Upgraded bathrooms can add value to a house; however, some bath features are too luxurious and scare off buyers. These might be over-personalized finishes, hot tubs, or whirlpool baths. 

According to Remodeling magazine, on average, you only recover half of what you spend in upscaling your bathroom. So if you want to renovate, do it a few years before you sell, so you can enjoy your newly-renovated bath.

3. Extensive Landscaping

Landscaping improves your curb appeal. Doing regular maintenance is good – pruning the trees, raking leaves, and mowing the lawn. Be careful, though, about adding elaborate features, like ponds, waterfalls, or bridges. Buyers see these enhancements as an increase in maintenance. Moreover, they prefer to add their own personal touches to the yard.

4. Swimming Pool

Once upon a time, a pool or hot tub added value to a house, especially in hot climates. Now buyers see them as an added cost of maintenance and a potential hazard that requires insurance. At best, a pool increases your house value by a mere 7%.

5. High-End Kitchen

Buyers want a kitchen that is both functional and aesthetic. However, the resale value of a high-end, chef-quality kitchen recoups only 54% of its cost in added value. Rather than invest in expensive appliances and materials, you can make small upgrades that yield a bigger payoff. These include painting the cabinets, replacing hardware, and adding energy-efficient models.

6. Upgraded Systems

Doing an overhaul on your plumbing, electrical, or HVAC systems is not considered an improvement. Instead, buyers see it as maintenance. If your goal is to sell the house, do regular maintenance to make sure you pass the home inspection.

7. Solar Panels

Energy-efficient upgrades can add value to your house. However, solar panels are not viable. The cost and ROI of solar panels vary widely by location and the type of panels. The average return for them is often around 10%.

Another issue is if you lease the panels, they belong to the solar company, adding no value to your house. Also, panels age and improved versions are available every year.

Upgrade Your House Sale, Sell to an Investor

Rather than remodel your house to sell it, there is an easier and more affordable solution. Instead, sell it to an investor AS-IS. Our investors love houses that require TLC. Better still, you skip the home inspection and close when you want to. You can enjoy a hassle-free, cash offer and invest your money to improve your next house.

kitchen remodel upgrades to increase home value

Five Upgrades to Increase Home Value

Home » landscaping & outdoors


Renovations can add value to a property. You might be wondering, though, which improvements give you the most significant return on investment? What changes make your house more comfortable and appealing to buyers? What do buyers even want in a house? These five upgrades are desired by buyers and increase home value.

1. Kitchen Remodel

You may have heard the phrase, “The kitchen is the heart of the home.” It is the center of activity, where family comes together daily. For this reason, it is one of the most important features on a homebuyer’s shopping list.

Buyers want a cooking space that is both functional and aesthetic. Rather than invest in a complete kitchen remodel, you can make small changes for less money that garner the same attention. Minor remodeling efforts include:

  • Updating the sink and faucet;
  • Refreshing sink grout;
  • Putting in new countertops;
  • Replacing backsplash;
  • Refinishing or painting cabinets; and
  • Swapping out lights.

Minor kitchen remodels show a return on investment (ROI) of at least 81%.

2. Build a Room

Buyers like a spare room that can be converted into another bedroom, alternate living room, or hobby room. You can turn an unfinished basement or attic into a new, attractive living space. All you have to do is put down some flooring, install drywall, and paint the walls. You can then pitch the bonus space as an added value, that the buyer can turn into a possible game room, craft room, or in-house gym.

Repurposing the attic into a finished room can net an average 56% ROI. A finished basement will give you a return of 70% to 75%.

3. Open Up the Floor plan

Buyers enjoy connectivity between high-traffic rooms, such as the kitchen and dining area or living room. Consult a contractor first before you start swinging a sledgehammer. Ensure the house stays structurally sound after you knock out walls or structural columns to open up the floor plan.

Homes with an open floor plan appreciate 7.4% a year.

4. Update the Backyard

Buyers spent so much time indoors last year, they now want a house with a functional backyard. A well-landscaped yard, alone, can contribute up to 28% of your house value. You can make your backyard more appealing by doing the following:

  • Landscaping;
  • Build a deck or covered patio; and
  • Replace the fence.

If you build a deck, consider extras like accent lighting and built-in seating. You might put in a fire pit for extra warmth and comfort.

You can also create a sense of flow between the outside and inside of the house with sliding glass doors. This feature is popular when entertaining, as it connects the living room or kitchen with a possible alfresco dining area.

5. Put in Hardwood Floors

Carpets trap dirt, dust, stains, and odors. They fade over time and require a tougher cleaning than solid flooring. Buyers nowadays like a house with polished, hardwood floors. Hardwood floors are beautiful, durable, easy to clean and add rich tones to the interior.

Hardwood floors earn you an average 70% to 80% ROI.

Save Your Money, Save Time, Sell to an Investor

Making these improvements costs money. If you can afford them and are in no hurry to sell, you may increase your asking price, depending on the upgrade. Otherwise, consider the alternative: sell to an investor for a no-obligation, all-cash offer. Most investors will purchase a house AS-IS, ranging from outdated, unfinished renovation to significant damage. You can enjoy a quick closing, without an endless parade of showings, and use the cash to improve your next house.

red door how to improve curb appeal before selling a house

How to Improve Curb Appeal Before Selling a House

Home » landscaping & outdoors


Curb appeal makes the first impression as a buyer pulls up to your house. A beautiful outside accomplishes four things:

  • It sets the mood;
  • Invites people to see the inside of the house;
  • Increases home value; and
  • Makes it easier to sell.

Here are seven ways you can improve curb appeal before selling your house.

1. Upgrade Your Mailbox

If your mailbox is on the road, it loses appeal after so many years of direct sunlight, bad weather, and slow degradation. You can replace your mailbox for as little as $20. Just be mindful of city and community regulations when you put in a new mailbox.

2. Paint the Front Door

Painting your front door can add brightness and a pop of personality. A gallon of paint starts at $30. Choose a bold color that makes your house stand out and compliments the rest of the house colors.

3. Dress Up the Front Porch

The front stoop or porch connects your interior to the exterior and provides an additional living space. For this reason, you want to create a welcoming, functional entryway. Keep things symmetrical by placing identical lanterns or potted plants on both sides of the front steps. Install a porch swing or add outdoor furniture, which you can find cheap at antique or second-hand stores. Be sure to put out the “Welcome” mat too.

4. Replace Lighting

Lights make an entryway safe and appealing. When choosing light fixtures, make sure they match the style of your house and provide adequate brightness. You can also add accent lighting to trees or a walking path to increase curb appeal at night.

5. Landscape

Your front yard creates the bulk of curb appeal. Depending on the season you’re in, you may do more or less work. Springtime is often the best time to do serious landscaping, including pruning the bushes, weeding the beds, laying fresh mulch, and mowing the grass. Spring is also the best time to plant flowers to add some color to an otherwise green yard.

6. Pressure-wash

Power-wash the house siding, walkways, and driveway to remove dirt, grime, and mold. You will be delighted, maybe even surprised, to see the actual color of these surfaces once the stains are gone. Be mindful of caulking and the roof, though, since pressure-washing can cause damage.

7. Perform Maintenance

The outside of your house takes a beating. Storms and age make it deteriorate. Be sure to:

  • Replace broken fencing, railings, and cracked siding;
  • Stain the porch, clean windows, window screens, and gutters;
  • Inspect the roof too, and make repairs.

Instead of All This Work, Sell As-Is to an Investor

If you do not have the time to spruce, landscape, or make repairs, consider selling to an investor. Most investors will make a cash offer on a house as-is. They do not mind if the front yard is overgrown or brown and dying. You can enjoy a quick closing and focus your time and energy on the curb appeal of your next house.