When you’re staging your home, the outside is just as important as the inside. Like anything else that is destined to be listed for sale, carefully planning a potential buyer’s first impression is critical for generating interest. Modern home buyers are of course interested in what their experience will be like inside of the house, but it’s the land as a whole – including the outdoor landscape, location, and the size of the actual plot of land – that is equally important. With all the competition in the real estate market at any given moment, you ideally want your house to stand out – without overdoing it. Here five super-effective tips to up your landscaping game and make your home more valuable and desirable to home buyers on the hunt.
Research Your Home’s Architectural Style
Every home has its own architectural style. Becoming familiar with your home’s architectural style is an excellent place to start when finding inspiration for the style of your landscape, or moving your landscape a bit further into that style. This can complete the picture for a home buyer looking specifically for a Victorian house, for example. Most houses fall under these categories:
With the names and images of some of the prominent styles, you can quickly find what architecture your house falls under most closely, and gain inspiration from some quick research for images of the landscapes paired with those houses. The things to pay most attention to in the landscapes that coincide with your home’s architecture is the general height of the landscape, how walkways are placed and what materials and textures are used, and how dense the landscape is overall.
Use The Golden Ratio
The “Golden Ratio” is an old, tried and true method of creating proportions that display instant beauty and is an incredible tool when applied during landscaping. In fact, the Golden Ratio appears on its own in nature – it shows itself in the spiraling of leaves or shells, for instance – and has been used in architecture and design for thousands of years.
It is all about proportions, and when it’s applied to landscaping, it’s about the way the areas and content of a garden are laid out in relation to each other. To reap the benefits of the Golden Ratio when you start to dig in and start landscaping to prep your house for sale, you will need a ruler and a calculator.
The most important aspects to remember when using the Golden Ratio in gardening and landscaping are both the number 1.618 (this is where your ruler and calculator comes in) as well as the number sequence 1, 2, 3, 5, 8.
Next, keep in mind you are applying the Golden Ratio at all times to rectangles, as big and small as you want them, and as many of them as you want – but very specifically, rectangles, or Golden rectangles, not perfect squares. To create a Golden rectangle:
- First, to strategically place the trees, shrubs, or perennials in your landscape, begin by choosing your unit of measurement. For instance, are you placing two perennials inches, or feet, apart? This is your starting point.
- Put two plants down as you like them, vertically, one above the other – and then grab your ruler. Measure the vertical distance between the two plants. Then, multiply that value by 1.618. This is your horizontal value for placing two other perennials horizontally across from each of the ones already placed – and voila! You’ve created your first Golden rectangle in your landscape. Apply as many times as needed with the space available to you.
Another aspect of the Golden Ratio is the “Fibonacci Sequence”, or, 0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, … and so on. The next number is always found by adding up the two numbers before it. Alternatively, you can multiply the last number by 1.618 (there’s that magic number again!).
This sequence is very helpful when it comes to grouping plants together as it tells you how many plants should be placed in each grouping. Gardening has already taken to using it in general – it is not an accident that flower bulbs are generally packaged and sold in packages of 3, 5, or 8!
You can also use the number 1.618 to determine the ratio of the various heights within a landscape. For instance, choose a tree or plant as a reference – 6 ft is usually a good place to start, but any height is fine. From there, divide the reference plant by 1.618. That is your next tallest plant. From there, divide that number by 1.618 – that is the most aesthetically pleasing height of the next plant in your landscape. This helps with grouping as well, because you can take height into account when placing the groups together if desired – either how two groups near each other relate to one another height-wise, or how heights relate within a group.
The idea here is to work with the numbers instead of against them – don’t get so caught up that you miss the big picture. Use the Golden Ratio as a guide – a very accurate and rewarding guide – and allow yourself some creative wiggle room. Always step back periodically and assess your progress. You’ll be amazed when you use these numbers as a guide and step back to see how beautifully and quickly your landscape will come together. Any way you apply it, either in every way mentioned above or even in only one aspect, the Golden Ratio will drastically elevate and transform the aesthetic of your landscape and give you that extra edge when your house is listed and advertised.
Use Complementary Colors
Complementary colors are another way to add a conscious aesthetic to your home (without having to think too much about it). These universal color pairings take the guesswork out of what colors to choose for your landscape and are fool-proof when it comes to landscape aesthetics. For instance, if you have a group of orange flowers already available in your landscape but would like to add more around them to really make them pop, blue is your best option as blue and orange are complementary colors.
First, take into consideration the color of your house, and plan to place perennials of its complementary against the home’s exterior. Once you find the complementary color to the color of your house, you have found the dominant color for your landscape. From there, sprinkle in another complementary color pairing, or plain white. Keeping these color pairings in mind will make sure you are choosing colors for your landscape that complement each other as well as the color of your house. The complementary color pairs are as follows:
- Yellow and Purple (Violet)
- Orange and Blue
- Red and Green
White is classic, clean, and very helpful, as white makes any color it is adjacent to appear brighter. If your house is white or you are repainting it white, then you have a clean slate to work with. Choose any color as your dominant color, find and sprinkle in complement, and choose to add another complementary pair if desired – and watch the colors of your landscape suddenly come to life.
Keep It Simple
Using tried and true techniques for aesthetics is a major asset when it comes to landscaping, but keeping it simple and creating space among the layout is crucial as well. There needs to be some room left for the buyer’s own personal flair. When it comes to adding or preserving simplicity in a landscape, it is similar to staging the inside of a home – keep the charm but leave enough room for the viewer’s imagination and an opportunity for them to add to the landscape themselves. Create the necessary space, and tend to it, too: at the very least, you want to remove all weeds, supply edging to currently designated garden areas, and keep the open and available grass as fresh and clean as possible.
Anticipate A Return On Your Investment
If you put in the time and money to revamp your home’s landscape as part of prepping to list it for sale, you have simultaneously set yourself up for a return on your investment. Overall, a solid landscape, no matter what, ramps up the value of any home for sale. That being said, the amount itself still depends on a lot of factors. Generally, a 150% return on investment is anticipated, and if the above tactics are used, you will certainly get close to that. You can ensure an even bigger ROI after paying attention to your landscape by listing your artfully appealing property on beycome – that way, you can pocket the commission on the quick sale of your newly landscaped home.