By Adriana Noton
Preparing a home for sale not only means making the interior inviting to prospective buyers, but it also means creating an exterior that is attractive, fresh and clean. Homeowners often do not want to begin a big-ticket remodeling project, but still need to make the existing facilities look more appealing. Driveways renovations increase the house value in the market, and are one way to help a home sell quickly.
If completely replacing the old driveway is out of the question, there are alternate options. While the basic sub-structure may be sound, the surface may be chipped, cracked, and stained with oil. Less expensive alternatives for visual repair may include refacing with asphalt, installing pavers, or even a applying a simple paint job.
A driveway need not be at its worst to benefit from re-applying asphalt sealant. A relatively few short years of exposure can cause parts of the paving to begin to pull apart, due to an annual cycle of temperature, sun and moisture. These are the same kinds of erosive stresses that cause even mountain chains to crumble away, and driveways are not nearly as tough.
This project can be undertaken either by a homeowner or by professionals. Doing it yourself can save over half the cost, but requires some initial planning, preparation, and care in order to avoid making any costly errors. This kind of project starts with a thorough cleaning and weed removal, sometimes requiring the use of a pressurized sprayer, and the possible the application of herbicides.
There are four general types of sealers, including standard asphalt sealants, and a relatively new product that suspends the asphalt particles in water. Coal-tar based sealers work well in high-traffic regions, and go a little further to resist all vehicle fluids as well as the air and sun. Acrylic sealers are not petroleum based, but are another sealing option that come in different colors. Acrylics are a little more expensive, but generally last very well.
If the original roadway was concrete, similar surface preparations are required prior to sealing, with the addition of filling in any cracks, while taking care to avoid covering the expansion joints. Two coats of paint should be applied, allowing the concrete to thoroughly dry each time. This kind of project should ideally be undertaken on a dry day, when the air temperature is in the low seventies, and the ground is above fifty degrees.
Other renovation materials include manufactured paving stones, which are available in both mortared and mortar-less styles. When mortar is applied, structure becomes less flexible, and will not allow movement of the stones. Mortar-less paving is the most popular variety, and utilizes a special mixture of sand in the spaces between individual stones. Both methods can dramatically improve the looks of the home’s exterior, making the driveway into an asset that ties the exterior landscaping to the home itself.
Sealants and new surfaces are a good idea for all homeowners, and driveways renovations increase the house value in the market. If your home is in an area of extreme weather conditions, using them can do more than simply guarantee a rapid home sale. Such treatments are an example of a relatively small investment in maintenance that save a great deal of money on future repairs. Whether preparing a home for sale or simply keeping it looking good, driveway renovation is an excellent choice.
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