Frankenhomes: Owners Do the Darndest Things

Frankenhomes: Owners Do the Darndest Things

Sometimes, the best laid plans...


ugly_entryway.jpg

Bad Flooring Is Just The Beginning
Courtesy HomeVestors

Some people do horrible things to their homes simply because it seems smart or practical at the time.  More often than not, these homes go unsold because the renovation cost and effort is above and beyond what most buyers can overlook. 

Know what to watch out for and how to avoid these mistakes.
CNN Money has teamed up with HomeVestors (of "We Buy Ugly Homes" billboard fame) and they have compiled this list of fatal home flaws.


Dysfunctional floor plans: Someone needed more bedroom space
so they added on, but it messed up the traffic flow. It was much worse
than just having to walk through one bedroom to get to another. "You had
to walk from the living room through a bedroom to get to the kitchen,"
said Hicks.

Imagine stumbling through Grandma's boudoir whenever you hungered for a late-night snack.

5 bedrooms - 1 bath:
It's a hard sale when the house has many more bedrooms than baths. Five
full bedrooms with a single bath, for instance, makes the morning
traffic jam very tough.

It's even harder if the bath is completely
misplaced. HomeVestors bought a house where there were three bedrooms
on the second floor and two on the third, a total of five. Yet there was
a single bath located in the basement.

"If you had to go, you had to go down three flights in the middle of the night," said Hicks.

Poorly converted garages:
Needing more space, homeowners often make new bedrooms out of old
garages. But thoughtless conversions ruin the curb appeal, with the new
residential wing still looking like the old garage.

"It ends up looking really bad," said Hicks, "and you don't even have a garage anymore."

Big kitchen - no living room: Some homeowners have hobbies or interests that they devote major floor space to -- at the expense of everything else.

"One
owner converted the living room into a huge kitchen," said Hicks. "They
had a great kitchen, complete with a huge island, but no living room."

Bedrooms with no closets:
This can evolve in a couple of ways: The previous owner could have
removed closets to increase the bedroom's floor space or added bedrooms
to a house where there was too little room for closets.

Whatever
the cause the effect on buyers is negative. Read my lips: People want
closet space. Look at the homes-for-sale ads. What do they say: "Great
closet space."

Really bad colors: An awful color scheme may
turn off homebuyers so much that they are blind to the home's other
virtues. 

Jungle fever: Everybody loves trees and shrubs, but let it get too lush and it turns into a problem.

"When the vegetation starts to block the light and make the interior real dark, that's bad," Hicks said.

Missing parts: Neglected houses can look hideous, true, but they can be dangerous as well.

My personal favorite?  A doorway to nowhere:

basement door to nowhere.jpg

Courtesy HomeVestors



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Tags: homevesters, ugly houses

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  • The doorway to nowhere in my house: I'd like to weave a story about it once being part of the underground railway, but it's in the attic.

    I was just talking with a neighbor about living in a house with a kitchen but no living room. I think I'd like it. Everybody hangs out there anyway. I could be happy with a kitchen that has a corner for a couch (but not a great room) bedrooms and a big terrace to the yard in back.

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