April 17

5 Tips to Mask the ‘Ugliness’ of an Ugly House


Studies show it takes 10 seconds to make a first impression. When you’re selling a house, a bad first impression is a deal-breaker. 

Homebuyers often make a decision after one look.

If the exterior is cringe-worthy, buyers won’t walk through your front door. They’ll never see your stunning master suite or modern kitchen.

Do you own one of the ugly houses on the block? Want to increase your chances of selling your home? Keep reading to learn why selling an ugly home isn’t impossible.

The following tips can improve the inside and outside of your home. Let’s get started.

1. Create Curb Appeal

Curb appeal is another name for a first impression. Potential buyers only stop if your home looks good from the street.

Make sure the outside of your home is as appealing as the inside. 

A mix of architectural details, color, and texture can turn y our ugly exterior from blah to beautiful.

Let’s say you have a plain white house with neutral features. Add personality by painting the front door in a contrasting color like red, blue or black.

Next, paint the existing shutters (or add new ones) in the same color as the door. The color on the door and shutters add interest to the home’s exterior.

Consider window boxes or an awning if it makes sense. Potted plants can add natural texture. Coordinate porch decor colors, too.

Don’t go overboard. Too many colors or objects look chaotic. Give buyers 3 or 4 things to admire on their way to the front door.

Freshen your landscape if needed. Mow the grass and rake any leaves. Good landscaping can make a tired house look charming.

You can use exterior lighting to accent the landscaping or create a focal point on the house.

2. Highlight Your Home’s Best Features

Once buyers are inside your home, highlight its best features.

Don’t expect buyers to notice the highlights on their own. Be clear about the money spent on major repairs.

Make sure potential buyers notice and appreciate the new HVAC system or a laundry room. A new roof is a great counterpoint to an outdated kitchen or bathroom.

Ask the realtor to point out highlights like wood floors and a walkable neighborhood. Tell people if the house in a great school district.

The right neighborhood and school can make a buyer overlook ugly features.

Showcase your home’s best features in online photos. Many buyers house-hunt online. Don’t let their first impression eliminate your home as a choice.

Every home has a brag-worthy feature. If your ugly house has custom oak floors or a stone fireplace, feature them in the listing photos.

You can highlight your new roof by reminding buyers they won’t have to replace it for 20 years.

3. Fix What You Can Before Listing Your Home

Your budget is a big factor when it comes to repairs or upgrades. You must also consider your home’s price point and location.

If money is tight and your home matches the homes in your neighborhood, don’t remodel before selling. Buyers won’t expect expensive upgrades.

In a competitive neighborhood, it makes sense to spend money before listing. Fix the ugly parts of a home with fresh paint, new light fixtures, and a bathroom upgrade.

You’ll recoup your investment with a higher selling price.

If you don’t have money for a major overhaul, update the interior paint. Choose the latest color trend if it matches the style of your house. If not, pick a neutral color.

Either way, fresh paint makes buyers happy. If you don’t paint, the buyer may try to drop the selling price because they have to paint. 

Look for easy home improvements that fit your budget. For example: 

  • Update cabinet hardware in the kitchen and bath
  • New switch plate covers
  • Change the front porch light fixture
  • Power wash the sidewalk
  • Plant flowers

Everything you do to freshen your home makes it more appealing to buyers.

4. Stage the Home

You can use professional staging tricks below to make your home look better.

  • Remove window coverings to brighten the interior. This is especially important if the home has dated or heavy drapes.
  • Experts recommend removing half of your belongings to declutter the house. Donate the items or put them in a separate storage area. Don’t fill your garage or basement with packed boxes.
  • After you declutter the house, give it a deep cleaning. Shampoo the carpets and wash the walls.
  • Mute outdated colors in the kitchen or bathroom with complementary accents. In a pink bathroom, you could use a gray shower curtain, towels, and accents to look stylish.

Never try to hide your home’s flaws. Discuss any negative features so potential buyers know what they need to fix.

5. Have More Open Houses

If your house is a challenge to sell, you need to show it to more people. Make it easy for potential buyers to view the house with more open houses.

Show the home at different times of the day so people see it in the best light. Add hours so people can stop in on their way to and from work.

If the house is ugly because the street is busy during the day, have an open house in the evening.

More open houses give you extra feedback. Listen to what potential buyers do and don’t like about your home.

Make a plan with your real estate agent to help buyers see the positive aspects of the house. Be ready to negotiate on the price and renovations if necessary.

Investors Love Ugly Houses

Sometimes the best buyer for ugly houses is a real estate investor. House flippers see potential where other people see problems.

Reach investors, flippers, and do-it-yourselfers by using the right words in your listing. Terms like fixer-upper attract homebuyers who aren’t worried about ugly.

If you want to sell your house fast, contact Lisa Buys Austin Houses. 

We’ll answer all your questions and get you a no-obligation quote in a few hours.

Let's get started on your all-cash offer!

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.


You may also like

6 Advantages to Letting an Investor Buy My House

Why The Holidays Are Actually The Best Time To Sell Your Home

© 2020 New Roads Capital, LLC