The Dated Driveway Features Buyers Always Notice

published Sep 5, 2023
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It goes without saying that curb appeal is important for your home whether you’re selling it or not. While most homeowners already know that they need to tackle outdoor tasks before listing their property — like upgrading their mailbox, painting their front door, and splurging on some new plants — there’s one place that some real estate agents say always gets overlooked: the driveway. 

I spoke with two real estate pros who explained why your home’s dated or poorly maintained driveway can be sending the wrong message to buyers. They offered up some quick fixes to ensure your home is putting its best foot forward. 

A Singular Hunk of Concrete

When you picture a driveway, you likely imagine a plan slab of concrete that goes from the street to the garage or side of your home. Megan Fox, Realtor associate at the Fox & Stokes Team at Compass in New Jersey, says that those traditional driveway designs are beginning to show their age. 

Instead, she says homeowners should work to ensure that their driveway keeps up with the changing look of their home, especially when making renovations and upgrades over the years. 

“A classic home should have an elegant driveway that flows with the landscaping and design,” she explains. “A more modern home should have a simple curved or straight driveway to reflect the modern home design (whether it’s a modern farmhouse or a brand-new glass structure).”

As for materials, Fox says that there’s so many more options to choose from, including gravel and stone. “It is always nice to have delicate tumbled stone instead of chunks of concrete and heavy-looking dark gravel.”

Middle-of-the-Property Placement

Just like millennials and their hair parts, Vickey Barron, a licensed real estate broker with Compass, says driveways should never end up in the middle. “A driveway on the side of the house leading to an elegant home is ideal,” she says, adding that shape can also show your driveway’s age a bit more than you might like. “If the property allows for it, don’t feel that you have to stay within straight lines and rectangular shape.”

Lack of Maintenance or Attention to Detail

Driveways can show their age quickly when they’re not well cared for. This is why Barron says it’s a must to keep your driveway looking fresh by staying on top of routine maintenance. “It can be a small, simple driveway, but if it is cracked and collects puddles in the rain, it could make the buyer weary of the house’s overall condition and how well things have been maintained.”

Similarly, what’s around your driveway can also be sending the wrong message to buyers. While elegant statues lining a driveway were once the staple of high-end homes, Fox says that they “will not fly in 2023.” Instead, today’s buyers are looking for simpler stuff around the driveway. 

“Whenever there are weeds in between cracks of a dated driveway or a driveway is flanked by dying plants, it shows a lack of care and respect for the integrity of the exterior,” she continues. “It is relatively easy to maintain a clean, beautiful, welcoming experience starting with a driveway that is well cared for and clean.”