The perfect ‘kerb appeal’ formula 

Posted 25 February 2016 by Helen Christie

A property’s ‘kerb appeal’ is determined by how it looks on first glance which affects a homebuyer’s opinion before they enter a property.

Barclays Mortgages reveals the perfect ‘kerb appeal’ formula as 44% of buyers take 20% off the price of unruly properties.

New research from Barclays Mortgages reveals that the majority of house-hunters take just ten seconds to decide whether they like a property from the outside, as one in six Brits admit to snap decision making.

Over a third (35%) of property buyers make their decisions purely on a home’s exterior and won’t even venture inside if they’re unimpressed. This comes as over half (53%) admit they would buy a property that looked appealing on the outside, even if the interior needed extensive redecoration. 

Almost half (44%) of homebuyers would take up to 20% off a property’s asking price if an exterior was not appealing, with homes in London losing as much as £107,400 in re-sell value. On average the UK loses £57,600 on each home sold because of an unkempt exterior, leaving buyers with far more bargaining power and sellers out of pocket.

New builds have been named the nation’s favourite property type with over a third (36%) of people choosing this property style as their preference. Other popular choices include Victorian houses (29%) and Georgian houses (27%). As a nation, we’ve fallen out of love with uninspiring 80s homes and Mock Tudor properties with just 8% and 9% of home seekers choosing these options.

Delving deeper into the top exterior features, it’s clear that home-hunters prioritise neat spaces and practicality. 69% chose a well-manicured garden followed by double glazing (60%).

The top five desirable kerb appeal features are:

A well-manicured garden – 69%

Double glazing – 60%

A parking space – 59%

Appealing looking neighbours houses – 54%

Neighbours having well-manicured lawns – 51%

There are however, many features that do not impress house viewers. 68% of people would be put off of a property if they spotted vermin control nearby.

The top five undesirable kerb appeal features are:

Vermin control outside the property – 68%

An unkempt front garden – 58%

Near noisy communal building (eg. pubs) - 53%

Busy transport links close by – 51%

Close to fast food outlets – 50%  

Property expert and Homes under the Hammer TV presenter, Lucy Alexander says: “When searching for a property, the first thing you see is the front garden and any outside space. In such a competitive market, achieving the best possible kerb appeal will not only be pleasing to the eye but also to the bank balance.

“It’s great to find out that by just keeping the garden well maintained and a fresh coat of paint on the door can add value, with both easy to achieve and at minimum cost. Making every effort on the outside will certainly help when showing interested buyers around inside as those all-important first impressions will have been positive.”

Hanging flower basketGiven the importance of a property’s frontage, sellers should be aware of the top garden features buyers find appealing. Hanging baskets, flower pots and a neat grass lawn come out on top with minimalist styles such as a blank canvas and AstroTurf coming out as the least popular.     

Concrete has been named the least liked house facia with 64% finding it off putting and a further 62% finding brightly coloured rendering the biggest turn off. However, modern brick is the favoured exterior material with 74% choosing it as the best option.

On the much debated subject of front doors, classic white and black top the list and more garish colours such as orange, pink and purple were least favoured.

Craig Calder, director of Barclays Mortgages says: “We know that one of the big questions that arise amongst homeowners is how can we improve the value of our existing property? 

“It’s fascinating to see the importance that the exterior of our homes can have.  We would encourage all homeowners to think about their own property’s kerb appeal and understand that getting the small details right can be one solution that can really boost the financial value of your home.”



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