Published on April 8, 2019

The grass is always greener on the other side. That is, unless said grass hasn’t been mowed for over a decade, is overrun with weeds, and is ridden with critters of all shapes and sizes. In the ever-fluctuating real estate market, one thing remains constant: Curb appeal isn’t just a bonus for potential home buyers and renters—it’s a necessity. 

According to a new survey from the National Association of Landscape Professionals, 79 percent of US homebuyers agree that a spacious and manicured lawn is an important feature in a home. The real surprise, however, came from millennials, who ranked the lawn as their number one priority. Updated kitchens, walk-in closets, and spa-like master bathrooms took a back seat to lush grass and perfectly trimmed hedges.

This isn’t the first time young home buyers have thrown the market for a loop with their unexpected wants and needs. Those who have been brave enough to venture out from the nest aren’t interested in buying the extravagant McMansions baby boomers once built. Instead, they’re on the lookout for minimal, open-plan homes with plenty of outdoor space for their furry friends to roam about. After all, millennials are more likely to embrace homeownership because of their dogs, not because they want to get married or start a family.

Want your front yard to stand out from the crowd? Here are three ways to get a jump on caring for your outdoor space this spring.

Water in Moderation

Just like when caring for houseplants, overwatering is a big no-no in lawn care. If you want your grass to look its best, give it a good drink every four to five days.

Don’t Go Overboard with the Landscaping

The biggest mistake Ryan Prange of Falling Waters Landscape Inc. sees homeowners make? Over-staging. Sure, tiered flower beds and exotic foliage make for a great photo, but unless you’re up for the challenge, it can be a nightmare to maintain.

Get Your Hands Dirty

Weeding is universally understood as a major pain in the neck. Still, getting down and dirty beats spraying the grass with potentially toxic weed killer. Tame unwanted growth by stocking up on mulch, pulling out weeds right after it rains, and aerating the soil by hoeing regularly. If you spare 10 minutes every day, this gardening essential will feel less like a chore.

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