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Lauder Orleans

Subject: Tacky neighbor ruins historic ambiance

We live in an historic neighborhood in which most of the houses were built before 1890, but are not proctected by zoning codes. What do you do about a new comer who tears down the old cypress Victorian cottage and replaces it with a two story modern box of an edifice? He is an architect by the way and says it time for change. The house has been under renovation for over a year. He works on it when he has time or money.

Nancy Polikoff

Subject: Curb Appeal

Too bad the homes in the photos look like new construction that were professionally landscaped. How about examples for the rest of us who don't own brand new homes.

Bobbi

Subject: Curb Appeal

Even though the pictures are attractive, I think there are ways that some of them could improve their curb appeal for very little cost.

Marlena in San Antonio, TX

Subject: Thank you for First Impressions

I appreciate all the suggestions, but the First Impressions by Brad Morrison is a great article. I don't intend to sell my home, but I need tips on keeping it looking good for visitors and people passing by. These tips are great reminders that we often take for granted since we are use to overlooking things in our daily routines. Thank you to all the others who offered great tips.

Now, can you please help me? I have a problem that I recently noticed on the back of my home. The aluminum siding is peeling. The company that installed the aluminum siding went out of business. With every good wind, more paint peels and the flakes are on the ground. Do you have suggestions to stop it and who should I call to fix it at a reasonable price?

Michelle

Subject: Advice not just for sellers!

Doing some sprucing-up will not only help the sale of your own home, but boost property values in the neighborhood. If more people make their homes more presentable on your street, it'll give a better overall look to all the homes and give buyers an even rosier look on the neighborhood as a whole. That ends up benfiting you later even if your home is not on the market now. So this is good advice not just for sellers, but for everyone.

Cate

Subject: Curb Appeal

I bought a blower (a smaller one that I have attached an orange extension cord to) on sale at my local hardware store, and use it to blow a "clean and crisp" driveway and sidewalk to my front door - at least twice per week. This makes a great difference in overall yard appeal. Trees create waste on a daily basis...

Millie

Subject: Curb Appeal

There's nothing much new here. I can look through any home & garden magazine and see this. To me, it looks like that's exactly what you've done. Where are the unique situations? Anyone can come up with this when one has a perfect, new house.

Brad Morrison

Subject: First Impressions and ez fixes on in/out home Curb Appeal

On a budget and need to repair/prepare and sell your home fast? Are you expecting the big boss over or having a family reunion? Try these tips:
(I was a RE appraiser, bought and sold many homes with and w/o Realtors, did many make-overs and remos, had mega-parties and learned from fantastic successes and blaring mistakes)
~ Follow Angie's exterior landscaping tips in this "10 ways...curb appeal" article. Also "cut-in" around all bed borders for extremely professional and low maintenance look. WORK the exterior house and yard 1st (front and sides especially).
~ Don't paint the whole house outside but spruce the front and side trim, porch, entry door (and screen/storm?) and shutters.
~ Cinch up sagging gutters, down spouts, soffets, trim etc. (Do these all around as this is a repair, not "make-up")
~ The front porch/entry/yard/driveway/etc. should be as sparse as possible save all awesome landscaping.
~ Don't let exterior curb appeal disappear the minute the front door is open. If you have trouble spots make them the last place you see or go. Just inside the entry door should be showroom condition then go to the room that looks the best next. Loose stuff goes behind doors, walls, fences etc.
~ Brighten the entry hall/foyer and dark rooms only with fresh coat of paint in the entry ways (and any dark rooms, especially dark paneling unless super high quality with good lighting. All fixtures everywhere need bright light bulbs...for this purpose, nix the energy savers in dark areas). If the entry opens to a stair way leading upstairs, be sure it is in "show condition."
~ Remove dried up, gag-ya, stick-ya-in-the throat rotten curtains and, if the windows aren't excellent, replace with inexpensive blinds. Otherwise, leave them naked like a new house. In any case, wash windows in and out. Do these specifically on the main entry floor.
~ Replace ratty carpet and vinyl with new inexpensive products in neutral colors. If they want to yank and replace it later, at least they don't have to delay a move in because it is so bad. Ditto on kitchen/bathroom counter tops if they are smaller as in old houses, and really in need (not a big investment at all). Do these specifically on the main entry floor.
~ If you can' get everything out get all extra stuff to the garage and/or unfinished part of your basement
~ A little furniture is preferred if possible. Realtors buy furniture to put in new houses for sale.
~ Put in wall outlet good smell-ums so house always smells good...but not over powering
~ Clean everything, especially inside window sills if they will be open. Wash all windows in and out.
~ Use WD40 or wax on anything that sticks or squeaks
~ Empty all but 1 or 2 Kit cabinets
~ Make sure window views are maximized or mitigated (open vs. shut blinds), stuff in viewing frame when looking out, etc.
This won't break the budget and all can be done in a couple days if you use youth organizations in your area who would be happy to do it for a donation. Support your local church.
That's it for now...may contribute more later (so far this professional advice is for free!!!)

Bal

Subject: Aguila

Homeowner and interested in new ideas to improve curb appeal.

Trudy Wright

Subject: Home exterior pictures

There are several shots I would like to "borrow" some ideas from, any chance I could get a copy of a couple of the photos?? Or is it possible for me to copy them without infringing on someone's else's rights?
Love this posting in general and appreciate getting it!! Thanks, a member in a small town, USA.

Realtor - Margaret Barber

Subject: CLEAN, CLEAN, CLEAN.

CLEAN----Driveway, front porch, door, welcome mat, windows, outside and inside. Nothing turns off a buyer like someone else's trash and dirt.
Sparkling clean brings smiles and offers to buy!!!

Laurie Cargill

Subject: Curb Appeal Idea

As a home redesigner/stager, one of my favorite recommendations for improving curb appeal is to add exterior shutters to windows, assuming they are not already there. This improvement isn't limited to front windows; shutters add a lot of pizazz when the side of a house is visible and to the back of a house that is otherwise rather plain looking.

Farhad

Subject: Landscaping

You may also want to consider planting native plants in your front yard instead of the boring, high-maintenance grass lawn. Native plants are easy to care for and are eco friendly. They also attract native insects and native birds and can bring your yard to life.

John M Kesse

Subject: Handyman

I requested a handyman to come to my house to take some birds nests on my roof. Nobody had come. Can you call me to let me know why nobody show up?

Katie Jacewicz
Katie Jacewicz

Subject: Katie with Angie's List

Hi John,

Did you make a request through Angie's List or did you call a local handyman directly? You can give our customer service reps a call at 1-888-944-LIST if you need additional help or information. Thanks!

Linda M

Subject: Curb Appeal Idea

Simple things like...power wash the algae off the siding, pull weeds at curb and in flower beds, get rid of odds and ends strewn about garden (dead flowers in pots, empty planters) put in mulch and inexpensive colorful flowers. Some things are glaringly obvious but sellers don't seem to have a clue. Oh! and for heaven's sake PLEASE HIDE THE TRASH/RECYCLE CANS!!!

T.W.

Subject: Reply to Linda's comment

You make such sense & I've often thought the same about front yards I have seen with "For Sale" signs.
I'd like to add large colorful plastic children's toys to your list though, at least while it's for sale, if no back yard is avaialable for them.
I do notice more and more though that sellers have figured this out as well as I see more and more attractive facades, yards & porches etc.
Emails like this & shows on HGTV etc., appear to be having a positive effect!
I for one am glad to see it!!

Mine is not For Sale but I will definitely look at it in the morning to be sure it looks at least presentable!!
Great ideas Linda!! Thanks!!

claire robertson

Subject: curb appeal

Get rid of flamingos and dwarves but buyers, remember that such things can be easily removed so don't be overly distracted by them!

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