April 18, 2024


Interior Of The Road

‘One Week To Sell’ Reveals the Surprising Eyesore Sitting in Front of Your House

Need a crash course on how to sell a house? A new show, “One Week To Sell,” will help you seal the deal, fast.

On this new Discovery+ show, New York–based designer Taylor Spellman travels to homes that have been stuck on the market for months. She then makes a few changes on a modest budget to prove you don’t need tons of time or cash to reel in buyers.

In the latest episode, “Love Lack to Love Shack,” Spellman heads to Mount Vernon, NY, to check out a 1,000-square-foot home that’s been on the market for five months. The owner recently lowered the asking price from $440,000 to $399,000, but this 1959 home is still dated and unattractive.

Spellman has $14,000 and only four days to repaint, redesign, and reimagine this home. Here’s what she does, which might inspire some surprising changes around your own abode, too.

Curb appeal: Nail your home’s first impression

This house needed some curb appeal.


When Spellman first sees this house, she knows that she’s going to need to do some serious work on the exterior. There are weeds all over the front lawn and lots of overgrown hedges, and the house itself has no personality.

“Currently, the curb appeal is doing nothing other than preventing a sale,” Spellman says. “It is so important to have the person feel super excited the moment they approach the house, and right now, that is making the buyer walk in the other direction.”

With some flower boxes and shutters, this house gets a lot of charm.


She buys some shutters and flower boxes for less than $200 to give the house a more welcoming look. Then she asks her design team to help clear out the weeds and plant some more polished greenery.

“Life brings more life, so the power of a live plant is so important,” Spellman says of the additions to the yard. “It makes people happy, it makes people envision themselves in the space, and I know that when we do this, it’s going to make the sale.”

Between the new window decorations and the cleaned-up front yard, Spellman’s fixes are very easy for any homeowner. She proves that it takes only a few days to give an unsightly house some serious curb appeal.

Hide your trash cans

Before: This space was trash can storage.


Before Spellman steps inside for the first time, she notices trash cans right by the front door and strongly disapproves.

“Garbage cans out front is a little touch and go,” Spellman says.

She has the cans relocated and turns this entry space into a beautiful porch. She does this cheaply by adding some potted plants and a bench she bought from a thrift store, upholstered with some left-over fabric.

sitting area
After: With a bench and some greenery, this becomes an adorable sitting space.


“This is a great way to have a brand-new item,” Spellman says of her DIY bench. “And on top of it, [it makes] that space feel very usable, when at first it wasn’t.”

Got dark, dated cabinets? Double down with dark paint

With some new accessories, this kitchen doesn’t look so bad.


Inside the house, Spellman finds a very dark, dated kitchen. While most designers would paint the cabinets or rip them out  in favor of new, lighter ones, Spellman doesn’t have that in her budget. So she decides to simply leave the cabinets the way they are.

She dresses up the kitchen with a modern glass table and colorful chairs, but otherwise she leaves this old kitchen the way she found it. In fact, she decides to lean in to the dark design by using a similar dark brown in the living room.

But don’t worry—there’s a method to her madness.

brown living room
This dark-color wall complements the dark kitchen.


“All the kitchen cabinets are dark brown, and frankly, most buyers are going to be turned off by it,” she explains. “But when I introduced the brown color in the living room, it suddenly makes the kitchen feel not so bad.”

As it turns out, she’s right.

If the living room had been bright and white, it would have made the kitchen feel especially dark. However, with the warm chocolate brown carried through the living space, a dark kitchen doesn’t feel out of place. It’s a cheap way to make a dated kitchen seem more attractive to a buyer.

No budget for hardwood floors? Try new carpet

living room
Before: Buyers weren’t interested in this spooky living room.


When Spellman first tours the house, she’s horrified by the carpeting in the living room. It’s ugly and dirty.

“My first instinct is, ‘This rug has to go.’ I can already feel that I’m ready to sneeze,” Spellman says.

living room
After: This carpet might not be a popular choice, but it’s better than the alternative.


However, while replacing the carpet with durable and beautiful hardwood floors would be ideal, Spellman doesn’t have the budget for it. Instead, she installs some new, off-white carpet, spending just $1,700. It’s not going to be ideal for every buyer, but this carpet is relatively inexpensive and it looks much better than the old floor.

Can’t afford carpet? Paint the floors for a cool look

Before: This green carpet had to go.


While Spellman chooses to recarpet the living room, she doesn’t have the budget to do the same in the bedroom, even though she knows the ugly green carpet needs to be replaced. She finds some old linoleum under the green carpet and decides to paint it white, with a unique herringbone pattern in blue.

After: This bedroom looks much brighter with the painted floor.


“This painted floor is going to take you right out into this beautiful outdoor space. It’s going to draw the eye out and add visual interest,” Spellman says when describing her vision.

While it takes time to tape down the herringbone design with painter’s tape, the paint itself costs very little. The new floor makes this room look unique, and the design does, in fact, bring the eye out to the connecting deck.

Black paint on the deck can look modern

Before: This red color needs to be changed.


While a deck can make for a great bonus space, Spellman knows that even a large deck will fail to entice buyers if it doesn’t look great.

“This is a huge selling point for a buyer,” Spellman says when she sees the deck, which is attached to the master bedroom. “And currently it looks sad and red and not inviting.”

So she has the deck painted black to look cleaner and more modern. Plus, with a more muted color, the beautiful greenery outside stands out. The paint and labor for this deck cost $1,529, so it’s not the cheapest fix in this project, but it’ll surely help this house find a buyer.

After: This darker color looks more modern.


Four days and $14,000 later, Spellman is finished with this project and the house is transformed—and it translates to a swift sale. It just goes to prove that a few minor improvements is all you need to turn a house around.

The post ‘One Week To Sell’ Reveals the Surprising Eyesore Sitting in Front of Your House appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.