Preparing your home for sale? One of the most overlooked improvements is easy to install and often the very first thing real estate buyers see when they view your property. In fact, it’s a relatively inexpensive improvement that even most realtors forget to mention. It’s your home’s residential mailbox.
While often invisible to those who have lived in a home for years, residential mailboxes are the flagship of your home’s property. A poorly maintained residential mailbox (or one that poorly matches the style and look of your home) provides a probable way for buyers to discern your home is not worth the time to see – even if your home is stunning!
Yet, a well-matched, upscale residential mailbox provides an immediate and strong signal to your potential buyers that say “stop and look.” It’s a first impression that starts long before your buyer even stops their car. It’s a first hint, a handshake that takes place far beyond the steps to your front door. Residential Mailboxes provide immediate feedback to real estate buyers that your home is worth a longer, closer look. And in today’s challenging real estate market, a small investment in your residential mailbox can mean the difference between a buyer seeing the rest of your home and a buyer deciding to skip your home; a missed opportunity.
And residential mailboxes can be upgraded in three easy steps:
First – Mailbox Types: Determine where your mailbox is located. The terms that provide a basic description for your residential mailbox are all associated with where your mailbox is located or how it is mounted.
For example, if your residential mailbox is attached to the wall near your front door (or attached anywhere else on the home), you will need to look for a Wall Mount Residential Mailbox. If your mailbox is mounted on a post and located near the curb or road, then search for curbside mailboxes or Post Mount Residential Mailboxes (you can also try searching for decorative mailboxes as these are often post mounted mailboxes). If your mailbox is inside a column, search for Column Mount Mailboxes. If your mailbox is mounted on a pedestal along the sidewalk or near the curb, search for pedestal mailboxes.
Second – Mailbox Style: Determine the correct style for your residential mailbox. Many people begin their shopping and fall in love with a particular mailbox style before considering how that particular style will compliment (or clash) with their home. Before you shop, determine the exterior style of your home. The top sixteen predominant styles across the United States are:
Cape Cod Contemporary Colonial
Art & Crafts Ranch Gothic Revival
Italianate Federal American Foursquare
Georgian Mediterranean Pacific Lodge
Pueblo Swiss Chalet Tudor
And once you identify your home’s style, then seek a complimentary style for your mailbox. Many residential mailboxes actually take on the name of the particular architectural style. For example, if you own a Victorian home, look for Victorian mailboxes.
Third – Mailbox Package: Determine whether you will need an entire residential mailbox package or merely the mailbox. Typically, wall mounted mailboxes are the easiest to shop for, as the options are typically few, including locking features, newspaper holder option, and address numbers.
Post mount residential mailboxes (also called curbside residential mailboxes) have several more features available to the discerning buyer. Post mount mailboxes are available with or without the post. And the post itself may have options as well. Some residential mailbox posts have finial caps to put an exclamation mark on the post’s top, post cuffs to dress up the intersection of the post and the ground, as well as brackets that provide a decorative look and add strength to the support of the mailbox. In addition, the post mounted mailbox has multiple options such as locking or non-locking, multiple locations for the address numbers and street name, newspaper holder, and more.
Typically, residential pedestal mailboxes follow the same feature availability as the post mounted mailboxes.
Column mounted mailboxes are often a two-step process. First, purchase the column mount mailbox, which typically offers just one or two options (locking or non-locking and address features). Second, hire a contractor to build the column and face it with brick, stone or stucco. If you are merely replacing the mailbox in an existing column, the column mounted mailbox can be one of the easiest purchases you’ll make in upgrading your home’s first impression.
One caution, regardless of what style or type of residential mailbox you purchase; be sure to steer clear of the styles that reflect too much personality. While novelty mailboxes are great for homeowners who are planning to stay in their residence for a while, mailboxes featuring fish or ducks or cars or anything that might segment the type of buyer that might consider your home are a poor idea. Look for quality, upscale residential mailbox styles that would make a buyer excited to see the rest of your home.