How to Get the Best Appraisal and Who to Blame for a Low Valuation. Mortgage companies and mortgage bankers actually have nothing to do with the appraisal process. Appraisals are typically handled through the title company and appraisers are often selected from a network of appraisers with which the title company is affiliated. They’re an unaffiliated third party. Often times, there’s confusion because the homeowner is informed about the cost of the appraisal by the mortgage company/banker, when actually there is no mutually beneficial relationship.
This is a guest post from Andrea Davis. Davis is the editor of HomeAdvisor, an online service that connects homeowners with home improvement professionals in their area for free, ensuring quick and reliable contractor services at reasonable prices.
Is your home exterior prepared for showings this spring and summer? Have you done all the work so that prospective buyers driving by will admire it? If not, have no fear as it only takes some quick maintenance. You need to start with the front lawn, as it will be the first area people see.
Here are the areas in the front lawn you need to focus on to ensure buyers will have the best impression possible as they walk up for showings:
Keep Everything Green and Trimmed
You need to keep the lawn well-trimmed and maintained throughout the sale process. Mow the lawn regularly, but not so low that soil shows or grass doesn’t grow anymore. Trees and shrubs are another often overlooked area in the yard that buyers pay attention to. You can attempt to prune them yourself, but you’re better off paying a certified arborist to trim your trees or shrubs to ensure proper technique, a better look and healthier plant life.
Mix in Colors
Perennial flowers and shrubs come in a variety of colors and hues for you to choose from and match against your home and lawn. Investing in young perennials means these flowers last longer over the years. Varieties of perennials can handle extreme climate conditions, which add to their overall value. It’s an investment that pays back not only the seller but the buyer as well.
Mulch is crucial when planting new flowers and shrubs, whether they’re perennials or annuals. If you have soil that’s dried out because of snow or below-freezing conditions during the winter, mulch will revitalize it and help the new young plants grow. Mulch can be bought at most home improvement stores and comes in a variety of types.
Create Flower Beds
To avoid mulch or dirt spilling into the grass or to keep grass clippings from spreading, consider creating flower beds. Flower beds help your flowers pop to prospective buyers and keep the mulch and soil gathered around the flowers rather than spread out into the grass. Flower beds also keep grass clippings from getting into the flower beds. This is also known as landscape edging or curbing, a known method for increasing appeal and designing a yard. Landscape curbing costs reportedly average between $1,200 and $1,600.
Add Some Fencing
If you have a particularly large front yard that ties into the back, or if you want to add that extra touch, install fencing around the front yard. Some ideas to consider for a front yard fence include white picket, bricks, latticework and chain link. A fence contractor can help you pick the right fencing based on the soil composition around your home and the design of your home’s exterior.
Photos courtesy of DesignMine.
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