Landscaping Can Significantly Impact Home Values, Appraisal Institute Says

Staff Report

Thursday, May 17th, 2018

The Appraisal Institute, the nation's largest professional association of real estate appraisers, encouraged homeowners to pay close attention to their property's landscaping as it could have a major impact on value.

The American Society of Landscape Architects suggests that homeowners invest 10 percent of a property's value in landscaping. In fact, a well-landscaped home can add approximately 6 to 13 percent in value compared to a property with no landscaping, according to one source.

"Don't underestimate curb appeal. A home with lackluster landscaping or an exterior in desperate need of a fresh coat of paint will likely be unappealing to prospective buyers and, ultimately, could affect the home's potential resale value," said Appraisal Institute President James L. Murrett, MAI, SRA. "Consumers need to ask themselves if their landscaping is attractive enough to make a prospective buyer walk through the front door."

The Appraisal Institute encourages homeowners to consider these four landscaping improvements:

Stick to the essentials. Spending a relatively small amount on design basics such as a winding flagstone walkway, stone planters and flowering shrubs typically provides a solid return on investment.

Plant a tree. A survey conducted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service showed that mature trees add an average of 10 percent to a property's value.

Think local. Purchasing plants that are native to the homeowner's region, or that need little water and maintenance, can help consumers save money.

Be efficient. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, well-placed trees, such as those that block shade, can reduce energy bills by up to 25 percent.