A well-kept lawn can put money in your pocket and can speed up the sale of your home. According to the National Association of Realtors, although it is “hard to put a dollar figure on it, but how your home strikes a potential buyer from the street is perhaps the biggest external factor in selling your home in the current market.”
There are many environmental benefits to a healthy lawn, including preventing storm water runoff and converting carbon to oxygen, and grass helps absorb street noise. The best news, however, is that you can have a great lawn without employing an expensive lawn service.
Here are a few tips to help you have one of the nicest-looking yards in the neighborhood.
The rule of thumb is to mow your lawn regularly and remove only a third of the grass. If mowed regularly, it is not necessary to bag the clippings. Un-bagged clippings are beneficial because they return nitrogen to the ground. Poor mowing habits can stress grass and lead to disease and other problems.
The best way to control weeds is to stop them before they start – that is where pre-emergents come in. They are designed to slow or halt the germination of grassy and broadleaf weeds. Keep in mind they won’t kill weeds that have already sprouted. Once weeds are present, choosing from among the many weed killers on the market is critical. Find one that is compatible with your type of grass or it could kill your lawn.
Fungal problems such as brown patch can come on strong when the pleasant days of spring give way to summer’s sometimes unrelenting heat. If you notice areas of your lawn that are discoloring or showing signs of stress, clip some of the affected pieces of grass and take them to your local garden center. The staff there should be able to identify the problem and recommend a treatment.
Clippings left on the lawn will provide nutrients to the soil, reducing fertilizer requirements.
Fertilize at least once a year. The type and timing will be determined by the grass variety and the climate, so talk to a turf expert at your local garden center for advice.
Bottom Line: Lawns are appealing to buyers not only because they are aesthetically pleasing but because they extend the living area of a home by providing an ideal setting for outdoor recreation, entertainment and relaxation.