What does it mean to be a homeowner? For starters, it’s certainly much different from renting an apartment or owning a condo. Homeowners have a bit more space and a bit more freedom, but with this freedom comes additional responsibilities. Taking care of one’s own utilities, repairs, and yard are all things to consider. Fortunately, it’s not like you’re completely on your own in these regards. Plumbers, electricians, and landscapers exist for a reason, and even the most handy homeowner might want some assistance now and again.

Homeowners certainly need to stay on top of all things going on inside the house, but what’s just as important (if not more in some cases) is what’s going on outside the house. The way a home looks from the outside says a lot about what you can expect on the inside and what kind of people live there. We’ve all encountered homes that look abandoned due to an overgrown lawn, untrimmed hedges, and leaning trees. The landscaping around the house speaks volumes. After all, if someone doesn’t even want to walk through the lawn, how can you expect them to want to enter the house?

In a housing market that’s slowly becoming more and more active again, people who are looking to sell need to keep in mind how crucial it is to maintain the area surrounding the house. Even for those not selling, maintaining a good lawn is simply a good investment. Here are three reasons why.

1) Most Americans Want Lawns

While the “white picket fence” trope of the American dream might be outdated for some people, there’s no denying that most people looking to buy a home want a nice lawn. In fact, 83% of Americans think this is important, and 90% think that it needs to be well-maintained. Even with all of today’s technology people want to be outside. And for those spending time outside, no one wants to be looking at a poorly maintained lawn.

2) The ROI is Tangible

Most home repairs have a decent return on investment (ROI). For instance, replacing a home’s siding can yield a 92% ROI, as can a kitchen remodel. In other words, most of the money spent on upgrades like these can be recouped when it’s time to sell the home. For landscaping work, the ROI is astronomical. Even spending 5% of one’s home’s value on landscaping can yield a 150% ROI. Because of this, most real estate agents make a point to tell their clients to consider investing in lawn care and landscaping before selling.

3) Sell Your Home Much Faster

If you are considering selling your home, investing in landscaping work doesn’t just increase your home’s value, it also increases its likelihood of being sold. On average, good lawns allow homes to sell up to six weeks faster than others. In other words, good landscaping makes your home much more competitive on the market. By keeping up with your lawn, you can rest assured that if and when it comes time to sell, your house will be at the top of the list, ahead of many others.

Of course, there’s more to the housing market than just lawns, but it’s an aspect of homeownership that might not be readily apparent at first. Lawns are always seen but not always seen as part of the home, necessarily. So much time is spent on the interior of the home that sometimes the exterior can be taken for granted. But make no mistake, we notice when a homeowner has done a poor just maintaining their lawn, and buyers notice even more. Even if you don’t enjoy being outside all that much, or don’t care much for what others think, at least consider the market value of your home and how that can impact your future. Keeping up a good lawn might not be your priority, but it certainly is for many others.

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