Can Your Neighbors Affect Your Home Sale?
You’ve spent time and energy weeding the front yard, painting the front door, power-washing your siding and planting flowers. You’ve updated the kitchen and bathrooms and de-cluttered the home. You’re ready to go to market. And then, when you step across the street to look at your home, all that stands out are the beat-up cars in your neighbor’s driveway, the torn-up lawn, the barking dogs, and the overall negative curb appeal (or in this case, “curb unappealing”). Will your neighbors affect your home sale? Possibly. Fortunately, you have options.
Build good relationships now
Even if you don’t have a plan to sell now, maintain a friendly relationship with the neighbors. You never know when you’ll need them. During your home sale, for instance, there may be problems that arise regarding fence repair, retaining walls or easements. Having a good relationship with your neighbor will help ensure their cooperation at a critical time in the home sale.
Keep them in the loop
If you plan to sell your home, give the neighbors a heads-up well in advance. Then, if you need assistance from them for whatever reason, it will be easier to approach them if you’ve given them notice. Knocking on their door to tell them you’re selling and then requesting their cooperation right away won’t help.
Offer to pay for improvements
It will be difficult to ask your neighbors to reseed their lawn, pull their weeds, change their fence or paint their door to help your sale. Ask them to pay for it, and you can expect resistance. If you need your neighbor to do some curb appeal work to help your sale, offer to pay. And keep in mind you can’t force the neighbor to use your landscaper, painter or contractor, even if you’re paying for it. It’s their home, not yours, and you need to tread lightly.
Also, many neighbors will appreciate the offer to spruce up their home on your dime. But others may not. Bullying them to work on your timeframe or within your rules could backfire once your home lists publicly.