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July 11, 2011

Let outdoor spaces help sell your home

Selling your home during the summer months allows you to showcase it in its best light. With a quick sale and short closing date, you and your family can even move into your new home before the start of the school year. But though the property may be at its prettiest during the summer, many homeowners forget to show off one of its best features when they put the home up for sale — the front and back yard.

“Curb appeal is essential when selling your home,” says Barbara Sukkau, president of the Ontario Real Estate Association. “Look at your home as a potential buyer would. If your front lawn is trimmed with beautiful flowers, it says something very different to a buyer than a property where the grass is brown and covered with weeds.”

Sukkau recommends homeowners spend time transforming the backyard into an inviting space before listing the house for sale. “An attractive and functional backyard is like adding another room to your property,” says Sukkau. “It’s a place for entertaining or for the kids to play, and you want buyers to see its value.”

A REALTOR® can help you decide how to best show off your property. “Too often, potential buyers glance at the yard during an open house or viewing without really experiencing what the space has to offer,” says Sukkau. “During an open house set up your patio or deck as if you were entertaining. Open up the sun umbrella and set out beverages and snacks on your patio table. This will keep visitors outside for longer and will allow them to see they could use the space, not just a quick peek before moving on to another room.”

The Ontario Real Estate Association offers more ideas on how you can make your property shine when selling your home:

  • Clear out the clutter: Remove any toys, gardening equipment or broken patio furniture that would prevent buyers from seeing your yard at its best.
  • Make your house easy to find: Replace house numbers that are damaged or too small to see from the curb of your house. You want viewers to think the house would be easy to locate if they lived there. Also, add outdoor lighting so the house appears welcoming for evening viewings.
  • To reno or not to reno: Your REALTOR® can help you decide the resale value of adding a deck or re-doing the patio before you put the house up for sale. Some renovations can add monetary value while others will not be worth your while spending the time or money.
  • Throw in extras: If you have attractive outdoor furniture pieces, consider including them in the sale to the new owner. This is great idea if you’re moving to downsize and won’t have room for the items. Let potential buyers know that their new backyard oasis is set up and ready for when they move in.

About the Ontario Real Estate Association

The Ontario Real Estate Association represents 50,000 brokers and salespeople who are members of the 42 real estate boards throughout the province. OREA serves its REALTOR® members through a wide variety of professional publications, educational programs, advocacy, and other services.



For more information contact:

Jennifer Fox

Thornley Fallis Communications

Mobile: 416-473-9565

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