10 Things Buyers Hate to "See" in Homes for Sale

Real Estate Agent with Monument, Black Forest, Falcon, Fountain homes


                                                10 Things Buyers Hate to “See” in Homes for Sale

                                            buyers scrutinize homes for sale


 Sellers should never miss an opportunity to shine above the rest when a buyer shows interest in their home. Buyers will formulate a rock solid perception based upon their visual inspection and sellers want to be in the top 3 on the first walk through for that shot at an offer. Here is a list of some of the fastest ways to turn off a potential buyer and have them heading for the front door and on to see the next property. 

1.     Animal Stains: Nothing turns off buyers faster than pet stains on carpet.  If a professional can’t remove the stains consider replacing the damaged flooring.  Poop patrol should also be done in backyards and along walk ways.


2.     Dirty Clothes:  Buyers associate dirty clothes with neglect and whether right or wrong they will start to interpret those piles of laundry on the floor as an indicator of the overall lack of maintenance on the home.


3.     Rotten or moldy food in refrigerators:  They will open the refrigerator especially if it’s included and it becomes quite a challenge to imagine keeping food in a container that currently holds a batch of developing penicillin.


4.     Dirty toilets and sinks: no explanation needed


5.     Broken windows:  Buyers will imagine all kinds of scenarios and they do have vivid imaginations.


6.     Unfinished projects: It’s time to hire a handyman to fix cabinet doors, grout or finish tile work, hang lights, paint walls, replace missing fence posts or any other chores that seem overwhelming. 


7.     Exotic pets: Snakes and rodents can make for great pets but the average buyer will either have an aversion to these creatures or equate their habitats with uncleanliness.  Try to find a temporary housing situation for these family members.


8.     Dorm furniture: De cluttering and pre- packing makes sense when selling a home but somehow dorm style living cheapens the experience for the buyer and they have to work harder to want the space for their personal items


9.     Religious or political ads and décor: Buying a home is emotional and whether they agree or disagree with your personal choices they will consider it offensive or over the top if surrounded by your values and beliefs.


10.  SELLERS: Staying in the home to answer questions, show upgrades and features, control pets, or any other reason is taboo and will have potential buyers racing for the door.


The showing is the seller's opportunity to capture the buyers attention so don't let lifestyle be the nemesis to a viable offer.










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Bob Miller
Keller Williams Cornerstone Realty - Ocala, FL
The Ocala Dream Team

Hi Lorraine,  Great post and great summary of dos and don'ts.  How often in no 10 violated?  Too often!

Nov 14, 2011 11:51 AM #1
Ralph Janisch ABR CRS Broker
Janisch & Co. - Conroe, TX
Selling Northwest Houston to good people like you!

In 25 years we have seen all of the above.... Sometimes when we walk into a home for sale we look around and wonder if the agent has any idea at all in how to advise a client and insist that they do the work necessary to clean it up and present it for sale.

Nov 14, 2011 12:12 PM #2
Lorraine Sayer
Monument, Black Forest, Falcon, Fountain homes - Colorado Springs, CO
Realtor ABR,CDPE,GRI - Colorado Springs,CO RE/MAX

Thanks Bob.  Yup I've had to chase sellers out of homes and ask them to at least wait outside.  Buyers want to have  open discussions and ask questions without feeling intimidated.

Jeanne and Ralph I'm sure you  have stories to tell!  Sometimes I think one of the sellers is sabotaging the sale- had that happen before. 

Nov 14, 2011 01:33 PM #3
Mary Macy
Top Agents Atlanta Metro - Roswell, GA
Top Agents Atlanta Metro

Good list, I have shown homes with all of the above in them, people don't get sometimes they are marketing a product!!!!

Nov 14, 2011 03:32 PM #4
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Lorraine Sayer

Realtor ABR,CDPE,GRI - Colorado Springs,CO RE/MAX
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