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6/5/2013 - Effective landscaping can increase property values


Taking care of your lawn, plants and other greenery on your property could increase its value.

Today is World Environment Day, one of the most important days of the year for those who put a great deal of emphasis on sustainability and beautifying the Earth as much as possible. But these practices don't only bear fruits for Mother Nature - they can also have a sizeable impact on the value of the average homeowner's property.

As noted by the Appraisal Institute, a key component of homeownership is effectively maintaining the landscape of the property, as this can affect the residence's resale value should the owners ever feel like it's a good time to place it on the auction block.

"If a landscaping change is positive, it can often enhance price and reduce a home's time on the market," said Richard Borges, president of the AI.

He added that the opposite is true if homeowners let their lawn's upkeep go by the wayside, both by lowering the price and increasing the amount of time it remains on the open market for someone to purchase.

Replant every five years
One of the ways in which homeowners can add to their property's overall value - and commemorate World Environment Day at the same time - is by getting into the habit of weeding the garden on a weekly basis. In addition, Borges notes that as much as homeowners may want to breed life into the Earth by planting, there is such a thing as overdoing it. As a general rule, Borges recommends replanting every five years or so to avoid "overwhelming" the landscape as well as the residence itself.

AI's president additionally notes that homeowners can knock out two birds with one stone by strategically placing where certain plants grow. For example, for those who live in hot climates, it's wise to plant large trees in an area that shields the house from excessive sun exposure. This will not only enhance the Earth by supplying it with new growth, but increases the home's energy efficiency by not having to use up as much electricity for air conditioning.

All of these tips can improve a home's resale value. However, it's important to note that the amount of homeowners insurance a policyholder gets should have nothing to do with its value. The Insurance Information Institute points out that how much to insure a property for ought to be based on how much it would cost to rebuild the home from scratch.


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