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MAIN Arrow to Home LifeHome Life Arrow to Home Life - HouseHouse

Build Home Equity & Boost Market
Value From The Outside

how miuch is your home worth?Beauty be more than face deep, but when it comes to building equity and boosting the market value of your home... it's what outside that makes the first impression and broadcasts what the house is worth.

Need a good reason to get busy fixing the exterior of your house? The better your house looks, the more likely you will be able to get your asking price if you decide to sell.

One way for homeowners to minimize the dip in their property value no matter what the current housing market is doing, is to invest now in home improvement. Yes, — are at the top of the list of equity-building strategies, but homeowners interior improvements — remodeling kitchens and baths shouldn't overlook the exterior of their houses.

"Exterior home improvements add to home value by increasing both the home's durability and curb appeal," says exterior home improvement expert Scott Seiler of ABC Seamless. "Work done on your house's siding, roof or landscaping can offer appreciable returns when it comes time to sell the house."

What external improvements matter most?

Five common equity-building exterior improvements include:

  • Roofing - "This is a top area of concern for many potential home buyers," Seiler says. "An old or damaged roof can cause huge headaches if not taken care of." Four out of five new homes are built with the average asphalt shingle roof which should last about 15 to 20 years. Metal, slate and tile roofs will last significantly longer. All need regular maintenance and repair to maximize their lifespan.

    Include a check of the integrity of your roof in your annual home inspection. This should be done at least once a year, more often if you live in a particularly harsh climate, and certainly after every significant storm. High winds and hail can cause considerable damage to even brand new roofs. If you live in an area where high wind storms regularly cause damage, you may want to consider a roof venting system to minimize wind damage.

  • front lawn with gate
    "If you've gone overboard with
    shrubs, floral displays and
    excessive plantings, it might
    look difficult to maintain..."

    Adding or Improving A Deck or Patio - Creating an outdoor living space is one of the hottest trends in exterior home improvements. If your home currently has no deck or patio, adding one can be a low-cost way to increase your warm-weather living space. If you already have a deck or patio, consider dressing it up with additional "hardscape" items such as a built-in bench seat, gazebo, arbor, pergola or awning.

  • Landscaping - One of the first things potential home buyers will notice about your house is the landscaping. "To maximize the value landscaping adds to your home, you must walk a fine line," Seiler says. "If your lawn looks like you've never watered, mowed, weeded or fertilized it, a buyer may see it as too much work to bring it up to snuff. On the other hand, if you've gone overboard with shrubs, floral displays and excessive plantings, it will also look difficult to maintain."

    The best bet is to keep lawns cut and patch any obvious bare spots, keep shrubs neatly trimmed and plantings to the minimum needed to enhance your home's curb appeal.

  • Sheds/Garages - Americans notoriously love our stuff and we always need more space to put it. Often, yard work equipment and patio furniture wind up stored in the garage. Consider adding a shed. You can either hire a professional to build one for you, purchase a do-it-yourself kit or opt for a pre-made plastic shed. Whatever shed you choose, the important objective is to contain outdoor clutter that might detract from the house's curb appeal.

    In addition to adding storage, sheds and other backyard buildings can add space for your family. Plenty of entertaining takes place in small backyard buildings originally meant for hiding the lawn mower!

  • Siding - Wood, fiber cement, vinyl, brick, stucco and aluminum are the most commonly used siding materials. Periodic painting is required to maintain the appearance and efficiency of wood, fiber cement and aluminum siding. Vinyl siding needs no painting, but can crack in extremely cold temperatures or leak at the seams where panels meet.

    Although there are plenty of choices when it comes to siding, seamless steel siding is the only siding option that eliminates both the need to paint and the risk of cracking or leaking. Seiler makes his living in siding and is convinced of the value of this product. "One of the biggest benefits of this product is its longevity," Seiler says. "The seamless quality eliminates any opportunity for moisture, dirt or bugs to get in. The siding never needs to be painted or stained. The color looks as good after 20 years as it did when it was first installed."

Leaks in the roof or under siding can eat away at the structure of the house. Branches blowing in a strong wind can knock roof tiles loose... or worse. Fixing up the outside of your house not only makes it look better, but can save money on maintenance and repairs... and keep your house healthy.


About The Author...
ABC Seamless Steel Siding - www.abcseamless.com
Source ARA Content

also see -> Deck Remodeling

More on home remodeling around the Web:

Field Guide to Remodeling

Hometime: Home Improvement, Remodeling & Repair

 

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