Revamp and Sell: A Guide to Selling Older Homes in the U.S.

  • Over 10 million homes in the U.S. are over 20 years old and typically face more challenges in selling.
  • Difficulty in selling older homes often stems from outdated features, poor photos, overpricing, and lack of marketing.
  • Old homes in disrepair or poor condition are less appealing to buyers looking for minimal repairs.
  • To increase the appeal of older homes, homeowners can update key features like tiles, lighting fixtures, and landscaping.
  • Despite the challenges, an older home’s unique charm and character can be leveraged to attract buyers.

Selling your home can be complex, especially if you have an older home. People are often attracted to newer, modern homes with all the latest amenities and styles. That said, if your home has been on the market for a while with little to no indication of being sold, it may be time to take a step back and evaluate the situation. Here’s what you need to know about old homes today, why yours isn’t selling, and ways to improve them.

Old Homes in The U.S.

Over 10 million homes in the United States are estimated to be over 20 years old. These homes have unique charm and character, but they also come with their own challenges. For one, many of these homes may not meet modern building codes or standards, which can be a turn-off for potential buyers. Additionally, older homes may require more maintenance and repairs than newer builds.

Despite these challenges, there is still a market for old homes in the U.S. Many buyers are attracted to the history and nostalgia of owning an older home. These homes also tend to be located in established neighborhoods with mature trees and larger lots, making them desirable for families.

Reasons Why Your Old Home Isn’t Selling

There could be several reasons why your old home is not selling. The most common reasons include:

1. Outdated Features

One of the most common reasons an older home struggles to sell is outdated features. Today’s buyers look for modern, energy-efficient homes with the newest amenities, appliances, and stylish design . Old kitchen cabinets and floors, installation, obsolete lighting fittings, energy-inefficient windows, and other attributes are unnecessary in the current real estate industry. If you are struggling with an older home sale, upgrading specific features and giving your home a modern touch may be time.

2. Ineffective Photos

If your home has been on the market for a while with no results, you may want to evaluate the photos displayed on the property listing. Remember that most buyers will first see your home through photos, so using high-quality, professional images that showcase your home’s value is essential . A buyer’s initial impression is crucial when browsing properties online, and if your home looks dull, cluttered, or poorly lit, buyers may overlook it entirely.

3. Overpricing

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An important factor that may affect an old home’s sale is overpricing. Everyone wants to earn maximum value for their investment, but overpricing your home can backfire. Overpricing can lead to your home staying on the market for longer periods, lowering potential buyers’ opinion of the value of your home. This may result in fewer offers or no offers at all. It’s estimated that homes are priced around $430,000 , and since yours is old, make sure you don’t go above this price point.

4. Poor Condition

If your older home is in disrepair, it’s harder to sell at a reasonable price. Buyers today look for homes that need little or no repairs, and people generally don’t want to deal with home improvement projects that can cost both time and money. Before listing your home, it may be wise to ensure that major issues such as leaks, electrical faults, or significant home upgrades are fixed. You may need the help of a professional contractor, but it will be worth the investment in the long run.

5. Lack Of Marketing Efforts

A lack of marketing effort can significantly affect how long it takes to sell a home. Ensure the effort and attention you put into maintaining and improving your home should also be put into advertising. Working with an experienced real estate agent ensures your home gets the proper exposure, which in turn helps sell your house more quickly and at an optimal price.

Features to Improve Your Old Home

If you are struggling to sell your old home, there are several features you can upgrade or improve to make it more appealing to potential buyers. These include:


First, you need to update your home’s crucial features, like the tiles in your kitchen and bathroom. Old, worn-out tiles are a major turn-off for buyers, so consider replacing them with modern, stylish ones to make your home look more attractive. Additionally, add robust concrete sealers to extend your tiles’ life and prevent further damage. The sealers protect the tiles from wear and tear, moisture, and stains.


Lighting plays a crucial role in how a home looks. Poor lighting can make your home look dark and uninviting. Consider updating your lighting fixtures with energy-efficient LED bulbs for better illumination. You can also add natural light by installing skylights or larger windows to make your home more appealing to potential buyers.


The exterior of your home is just as important as the interior. Curb appeal can significantly impact a buyer’s first impression of your home. Sprucing up your landscaping by trimming trees, adding flowers and plants, and keeping the lawn well-maintained can greatly enhance the appearance of your old home and attract more buyers.

Selling an older home may have challenges, but with the right approach and improvements, it can be just as appealing to buyers as newer homes. Remember that highlighting your home’s unique charm and character can also make it stand out in a competitive market. You can successfully sell your old home and move on to your next chapter by addressing major issues.

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