Use Native Species to Enhance your Homes Curb Appeal

By: Anne Eliason

The Phoenix, Arizona real estate market is a competitive one, and you want to make sure that your home stands out. A good place to start is with your home's curb appeal.

Curb appeal refers to your home's exterior appearance. Good curb appeal is essential when selling your home. It is the first thing that potential buyers see, so it can have a major impact on who views your house, and who doesn't. The more people view your house, the more chance you have of getting a sale. If the outside of your house is in disarray or is uninviting, potential buyers will drive on by, never giving your home a chance. First impressions count, so make sure that you send the right message to buyers.

One easy way to improve curb appeal is to give your house a fresh coat of paint. Nothing rejuvenates a house quicker than new paint. Also, make sure that your driveway is in good repair, and that your entranceway is easily accessible and free of all debris. Always put toys, tools, and garbage away to give your yard a tidy and welcoming appearance.

After you've taken care of the basics like touching up paint and doing repairs, it's time to focus on the garden. Cut back any imposing brush, remove any weeds or dead plants, and be sure to keep the lawn cut.

When planning their gardens, many homeowners in Arizona choose plant life that is not native to the area. While these plants are cheap and readily available in garden centers, the plants themselves are not equipped to live in the desert. They require much more upkeep, with constant watering being necessary for most of them to stay alive. Water restrictions can make it very difficult to keep the vegetation alive and thriving.

One solution to this problem is to consider planting native plants. Beautiful and hearty, these plants are designed to survive in extreme conditions. Most desert plants don't require any watering during winter months, and in the summer, only need to be watered about once a week. Fertilizer not a concern, as these plants have adapted specially for this environment.

Not only will having a garden filled with native species be much easier to handle in terms of maintenance, but also their appearance complements the Arizona aesthetic. Show pride in your area by displaying some of the flora and fauna that make the desert such a unique place to live. For potential home buyers, and in particular those relocating from out of state, having native trees, shrubs, and flowers will only add to the special flavor and beauty of your home.

In addition to looking good, planting native plant life also has the added benefit of being good for the environment. Water requirements are low, and local species of hummingbirds, butterflies, and other wildlife will find food and sanctuary that they may not find in gardens with foreign vegetation. Of course, these tiny visitors will also turn your desert garden into an enchanting oasis.

A well maintained garden can add approximately 10% to the value of your home. Surrounding yourself with nature is known to ease your stress levels and make your home a welcome retreat after a long day. Buyers in the Phoenix area greatly appreciate gardens, and in particular, ones that require minimum effort to maintain. By focusing your attention on native plant species, you will get the best of both worlds: easy upkeep, and a beautiful exterior that is inviting and unique.

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