"Blue carpet is the kiss of death" - things that make houses sit there and not sell

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Robin Rogers, Silverbridge Realty, San Antonio, Texas 398351

Real estate is local, of course, and I have noticed certain things over the years that make a house stubbornly cling to its sellers instead of taking in new owners. At least in my area, and maybe in others, these issues can cause the house to take longer to sell.

One of them is blue carpet, as per my soon-to-be trademarked slogan in the title of this post. Emerald-green carpet isn't great, but it's not as bad as blue. (Below is an actual photo from the MLS.)

Another thing that keeps houses from selling is bad feng shui that comes from having the stairs start right in front of the front door and continue straight up to the second floor. My Asian clients often comment on this.

The stair thing isn't too much of a problem for one-story houses. But they, like two-stories, can be affected by bad chi, which happens when the house is located where a street comes to a T-intersection in front. I think that the chi rushes up the street and blows right into, through, or against the house. Houses directly at the end of cul-de-sacs are affected, too.

Home buyers don't like puzzling rooms, either. I showed a vacant house recently in which the garage had been partly converted to a room. There was still a garage-type door to the room in the hallway, and another garage door at the other end of the room into the garage. There were no windows. There was a cedar-lined walk-in closet. The floor had the same new carpet as the rest of the house. There were 8 large fluorescent light fixtures on the ceiling. And all around the room at about 3 feet apart and 3 feet off the floor, there were electrical outlets. They were in the closet, too.

What was up with that room?! It would make a perfectly good game room or media room, once the fluorescent lights were replaced and a new door installed, and it wouldn't cost much. But I think that room may have too many strange little quirks for buyers to be able to imagine the possibilities. 

What strange things have you discovered that keep a house from selling?

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Robin Rogers, REALTOR, Broker-owner, TRC, MRP, CRS

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Don Eichler
Eichler Properties - Granbury, TX

Robin,  Did you really look at the converted garage very close?  This room was for growing potted plants if you know what I mean.  We purchased a house in the Fort Worth area in 1995 with the same set up and I ask the seller about the layout and he told me straight it was where I grew my Weed. 

I did list a home that had a blue bedroom a green bedroom and a yellow bedroom.  I mean carpet, walls and drapes, bad,bad, bad. 

Nov 13, 2008 11:33 AM #16
Russel Ray, San Diego Business & Marketing Consultant & Photographer
Russel Ray - San Diego State University, CA

I can tell you that red, orange, and yellow carpets aren't much better. And I will put emerald green right in there in a tie for #1 yuk position.

Nov 13, 2008 05:45 PM #17
Russel Ray, San Diego Business & Marketing Consultant & Photographer
Russel Ray - San Diego State University, CA

I just read Don's comment above mine and had to laugh. I inspected a house several years ago where every wall and ceiling plane throughout the whole house was a different color. It didn't matter how small the plane was. They must have had 200-300 colors in there. After about 15 minutes, I got dizzy and nauseous. Fortunately, I always carry aspirin in the car.

Nov 13, 2008 05:47 PM #18
Robin Rogers
Robin Rogers, Silverbridge Realty, San Antonio, Texas - San Antonio, TX
CRS, TRC, MRP - Real Estate Investment Adviser

This many colors?

60s poster



Nov 14, 2008 12:08 AM #19
Sara Bonert
Zillow - Atlanta, GA
Real Estate Internet Marketing

The colored carpets and bold laminate counters are a turn off.  But on HGTV's Sell This House they always do a pretty good job of painting the walls a coordinating color to blend with the offensive carpet/countertops so it is less obvious, when they can't afford to change in out. 

Dec 01, 2008 04:29 AM #20
Big Dan Corsair
Good Shepherd Real Estate, LLC - Chesterfield, MO

First, thanks to Jennifer for alerting me to this group for Introverts, I'm sure it will feel like "home"

I'm BIG DAN and yes I am an Introvert, INFJ


Its not just blue carpet it is BLUE!! A loonnngg time ago I was a home builder, well not loonnngg, but long, I had a spec home that would not sell and the color was...... you guessed it, blue. This home had some fantastic features in custom wood room which was the rfirst of its kind in the St L area, plus lots of upgrades and it just sat there, being walked through, looked at and passed by. One day the painter came into the office, didn't have a lot to do and said "why don't you let me paint that home, why not so we picked a soft yellow color and you guessed it, sold in about a week for full price!! ( This particular home actually was on national TV at the time because of a very bad market and yes it was blue, but that is another story)

I have concluded that a lot of people like the color blue, even the color of your carpet, the color of me house BUT they want to choose it for themselves not necessarily buy it from someone else. It has been my experience that whnever there is a lot o dominating view in a house it is good to suggest it be changed, no matter how new or how nice.


Dec 01, 2008 09:37 AM #21
Brenda Harmon
Century 21 Beal, Inc College Station, Texas - College Station, TX

I also have had trouble with houses with gray carpeting.  It just looks dirty to a lot of people.

Dec 01, 2008 09:47 AM #22
Laura Cerrano
Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island - Locust Valley, NY
Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher

Robin, Someone at Zillow loved your blog and linked to it.  I have alerts for Feng Shui and it came up :)  I was just at a home with stairs directly in front as soon as you enter--and can't for the life of me understand when builders are going to start thinking about Feng Shui.  It's not only Asian clients that won't buy...Feng Shui is popular and well known here and buyers are not choosing those homes!  Anyway, loved your post as well---if you'd like to put it in the group Feng Shui for Real Estate I'd like  to feature it.

Dec 03, 2008 02:36 PM #23
Robin Rogers
Robin Rogers, Silverbridge Realty, San Antonio, Texas - San Antonio, TX
CRS, TRC, MRP - Real Estate Investment Adviser

Sara, I've been watching those shows, too--I love 'em. How do they do so much with $2,000?

Welcome, Dan to the lair of another INFJ! I think you may be right about the blue. I don't like blue trim on houses, or blue kitchen walls.

Good point, Brenda! I've sold a couple of homes with gray carpet, but the rest of the house has to be very light and look sophisticated, rather than cozy.

Thanks, Carole! Yay! I need to do more research on feng shui. Would you mind coming to my home for a consultation?

Dec 04, 2008 12:16 AM #24
Rob Proctor
At Home Real Estate Company - Loveland, CO
GRI ePro

What are people thinking! Recently went through a house that had most of the carpeting replaced. I opened the bedroom door...old 25 year old multi colored brown/orange/gold carpet. Immediately turned my buyers off.

Dec 05, 2008 06:26 AM #25
Robin Rogers
Robin Rogers, Silverbridge Realty, San Antonio, Texas - San Antonio, TX
CRS, TRC, MRP - Real Estate Investment Adviser

Great point, Rob! I call that the "ran out of money" effect. That's what I tell my buyers anyway. Basically, sellers have to update/replace/repair everything that's noticeable, not just some or even most of it. Listing agents should let the agents know what to expect so they can prepare their buyers.

Dec 05, 2008 07:56 AM #26
Jeff and Lisa Sellers
The Sellers Realty Lubbock,TX - Lubbock, TX


I totally agree!  HOWEVER...we once had a buyer who wanted the carpets replaced...my wife asked if they wanted a neutral color,etc. and he said "NO, WE WANT BLUEEEEEEEEE CARPET!!!"  OBVIOUSLY that was the exception, but we got a good laugh out of it and thought y'all might too!  Blue doesn't appeal to the MASSES or the AVERAGE BUYER, I AGREE!

Dec 06, 2008 05:13 AM #27
Jennifer Allan-Hagedorn
Sell with Soul - Pensacola Beach, FL
Author of Sell with Soul

Carpet in the bathroom... not that it can't be changed out... but it's such a dealbreaker!

Dec 07, 2008 12:10 PM #28
Linda Jandura
Raleigh Cary Realty - Apex, NC
Realtor, North Carolina Buyer & Seller Specialist

We bought our house 7 years ago, before I was a realtor. It was brand new construction and had been on the market for over a year. The builder had installed cheap white carpet and painted every room in the house, even the garage, a pink/grey color. It was so dreary!

Not to mention the stairs were opposite the front door. Before we even moved in our furntiure we painted every room an off white, just for a new base coat, before we chose colors.  Everyone who saw the house before that noticed the huge differnence. Even my young nephew said if the house had been painted the white before it would have sold sooner.

I've put a live plant in front of the stairs which face the sidelight of the door, hopefully stopping the flow of chi out.

I have worked with builders who REFUSE to believe in Feng Shui, then blame everyone but themselves when their homes don't sell.

Dec 07, 2008 12:32 PM #29
Tamara Dorris
Master Your Market Real Estate Coaching - Carmichael, CA

Hi Robin,

Great and informative post!

I never thought about the blue carpeting. You mentioned the stairs facing front door, which I think is pretty basic Feng Shui know-how, so explain this....I had an Asain couple who would only look at houses facing the South (based on the husband's birthdate). The house they selected had a tree blocking the front path so they cut it down, and it was not a small tree. Here's the clincher: the house they bought had stairs facing the front door...you literally opened the door and there were the stairs. Now I wasn't praciticing Feng Shui, and I wasn't educated in it, so I didn't realize this.

The question is, would you tell someone the house is a bad choice? In this case, it was a rental so any applicable cures might not apply.


Dec 09, 2008 06:43 AM #30
Robin Rogers
Robin Rogers, Silverbridge Realty, San Antonio, Texas - San Antonio, TX
CRS, TRC, MRP - Real Estate Investment Adviser

Hi, Jeff and Lisa--so it's not just the builders who put blue carpet in homes!

I hate carpet in our bathroom, Jennifer! It feels nice, looks awful.

Linda and Tamara, I never knew trees and plants were such a big deal in feng shui. I'll have to learn more.

Dec 09, 2008 11:06 AM #31
Gary Swanson
Century 21 Harris & Taylor - Grants Pass, OR

I couldn't agree with you more.  I've had clients who don't even want to look at a house after seeing online photos of blue carpets and blue curtains.

Nov 01, 2009 04:53 AM #32
Lynda Eisenmann
Preferred Home Brokers - Brea, CA
Broker-Owner,CRS,CDPE,GRI,SRES, Brea,CA, Orange Co

Hi there,

Oh my, I'm soooo with you on this one and I see it a lot more than I'd like to.

Mar 13, 2010 03:27 PM #33
Robin Rogers
Robin Rogers, Silverbridge Realty, San Antonio, Texas - San Antonio, TX
CRS, TRC, MRP - Real Estate Investment Adviser

Hi, Gary and Lynda! Thanks for stopping by. I see blue carpet is "popular" all over the place.

Mar 14, 2010 12:13 AM #34
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Mar 26, 2012 06:55 PM #35
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