Real Estate Turn-Offs: Property Eyesores That Drive Home Buyers Away


If you’ve ever watched any of the home improvement shows on TV, then you know that potential home buyers have wishlists, meaning they have a list of top priorities of what they look for in a home when looking to buy. As someone looking to sell your property, it’s your responsibility to meet as many needs on their wishlist as you possibly can. Even if you can’t meet them all, you at least want to make sure you’re not highlighting features of your home that will drive them away.


Price and location are definitely features that can turn potential buyers away simply because they’re things that they either can’t negotiate their way out of or because they’re too big of a hassle. But one of the top drivers of deals falling through is property eyesores.


A property eyesore can be many things but they’re mostly aesthetic or design mistakes (usually by the seller) that potential buyers simply don’t want to invest in getting fixed. So if you’re in the market to sell your home, make sure you avoid these deadly real estate sins known as property eyesores.

Top Property Eyesores That are Huge Turn-Offs to Potential Home Buyers

A Converted Garage

Home buyers, whether first-time buyers or old vets, are going to want a home with a finished garage. That means, do NOT turn your garage into a spare bedroom, bonus room, or gym, and if you have, you want to do your best to reverse any upgrades or renovations to turn it back into a fully functional garage.


When working on your garage, just make sure it’s clean and free from clutter so that home buyers can see all the space the garage has.

The Messy Neighbor

When your home is in the vicinity of a messy neighbor, it can actually make your home less attractive. In fact, a messy neighbor can drive the value of your home down 5-10%! Fortunately, there is a way you can sell your home despite a messy neighbor.


Now, because this is your neighbor, you’ll have to approach this delicately… You don’t want to do anything to upset your neighbor or make them purposely sabotage the sale of your home.


Option #1

You can always try talking to your neighbor to see about reaching some kind of compromise. Maybe your neighbor will fix their yard if you offer to help them with it. If they don’t want to cooperate with you, you may need to bring in an attorney to approach it from a legal standard, especially if it’s causing health hazards to your home like pests and rodents.


Option #2

You may just have to try and distract potential home buyers with a privacy fence, a small water fountain to drown out any noise disturbances, or a vine-covered arbor… These things can all distract home buyers from the nuisance of a messy neighbor.

An Empty or Unfinished Yard or Patio

The whole point of house showings is to present your home in a way that buyers can see themselves living there. Well, in case you weren’t aware, outdoor living spaces are one of the top features that home buyers are looking for, especially since home buyers have had to learn how to adjust and enjoy being at home more often due to the pandemic.


If you have a nice backyard or patio but it’s completely empty, you definitely want to invest in bringing it back to life. Take the time out to shop for patio furniture from top brands, hire lawn care services, plant flowers, and declutter your outdoor space of unnecessary items. Investing in these things will actually improve the value of your home pretty significantly.

Pet Smells

When you first moved into your home, maybe you did everything you could to make your home pet-friendly. Well, in the process of owning a pet, it puts your home at risk for pet odors. Pet odors may not particularly be an eyesore, per se, but it is indeed a huge turn-off to home buyers. When putting your home on the market, be sure to put away all pet accessories and make sure to disinfect and deodorize your home as it can be a red flag to buyers.


When selling your home, the goal is for buyers to see themselves making a life of their own there, right? Of course. Well, how can you expect them to picture themselves living there if you have pictures of your own family living there?


Things like family photos, your kids’ artwork, pet accessories, and sports memorabilia are all things that personalize a home. By removing those items, there’s no personal reason why someone wouldn’t want to buy your home.


Before you set up any type of house showings, it would be in the best interest of your home and your selling potential to make sure you’re not committing any of these real estate sins.

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