Curb Appeal Checklist

Take a good look at the outside of your home. This is the first thing your home's potential new owners will see. Make that first impression a good one. Standing from street or sidewalk, remove hoses from view and place garbage cans and all unnecessary debris in the garage or out of sight. Think hard about placing political signs or slogans in the yard while the home is on the market.

Check the home from the roof line down.

  • Is the roof free and clear from tree branches and mildew? Never pressure wash your roof, but use a hose at normal strength to spray a algaecide to kill the mildew and make your roof look new. Spray water only in the direction of the shingles, down. 
  • Are the gutters clear of debris and neatly hung?
  • Are the windows clean and free from obstructions? Consider having your windows washed. It really brightens up a home by allowing more light through. But never pressure wash them.
  • Are hedges, trees and shrubs neatly pruned? This is a must! Be sure to raise the canopies of all low lying branches that could obstruct the view from the street. This will let in light too. General rule of thumb, hedges should not be any higher than the window sill.

Inspect the condition of the paint or siding?

  • Is it time to power wash the siding? Another must! Don't forget the sidewalk and driveway too.
  • Is touch up paint needed? Sometimes the shutters and doors will really make a house pop with a new coat of paint. I have worked with sellers who decided to paint the entire exterior of their home. Often times buyers will overestimate the cost of doing something like painting the exterior of the house and not even condsider a home because of it.
  • How does the front door look? Make sure to clean off any mildew or cob webs from the front porch. A wasp nest is not the welcome sign you will want to hang for potential buyers. All too often a front porch is littered with spider webs, wasp nests and old door hangers. Stay on top and be sure to check daily, even if you are like me and always use the garage! 
  • Speaking of welcome signs, be sure to have a nice mat out. I have seen some interesting ones like "I love my pitbull." And that's great, but not the impression to give someone before they step through the door. It is also really hard to come inside and be respectful if it is pouring outside and there isn't a mat to wipe our feet.

Do flower beds need an upgrade?

  • Are plants neatly pruned?
  • Is the bed free and clear of weeds?
  • Is the bed properly mulched? Pine bark is my recommendation.
  • Are flowers in bloom? Or consider adding a plant pot or two to draw the eye to the front door and encourage buyers to want to come inside for a closer look.

Keep the lawn neatly groomed.

  • Is the lawn free from weeds? Well, do your best!
  • Is the lawn free from grass clippings?
  • Is the lawn neatly edged?
  • Make sure the irrigation system is timed for early morning or late in the day so as to not drench potential buyers as they enter or leave. Yes, it has happened. If it happens at your house, then you too will be known as the house we got soaked at!


The best recommendation is to use a critical eye and spend the day making a great first impression. Having worked with both buyers and sellers of homes in Gainesville, it is not uncommon for buyers to decide at the curb to scratch a home off their list based on nothing more than the home's first impression.

As always, I am happy to visit your home and give you my free assessment on both things to do and the value to expect when selling your home in Gainesville or Alachua County.