Deal Killers

There are deal killers when it comes to selling a home. 

You can change a lot of things about a home, but you can’t change the location. When purchasing a home, it is very important to consider your future ability to resale. A home is a huge investment. You don’t want to do anything that will cause you problems in the future when you are ready to sell the home. 

All of these issues are subjective. There will always be a buyer that will not care about any of these issues. That said, we can definitely say that these issues with limit your buyers. 

Here are a few things to consider:

Power lines

We are all exposed to low frequency radiation by being around electronic devices. Will living next to power lines expose you to dangerous levels? Whether you are worried about exposure to electromagnetic energy or simply don’t like the look of the lines, these can cause you problems in the future.

These lines can also cause you issues with what you can build in your backyard. There might be arial easements to worry about.

In addition, HUD and FHA have restricted loans on properties with electrical lines that extend over dwellings, buildings, or swimming pools.


Homes located near an airport can be difficult to sell. When a residential neighborhood falls within an airport’s flight path, noise can certainly be a problem. This can be worse when the airport is a large airport that accommodates large passenger planes.

Research has also indicated that heavy airplane traffic can pollute the air for up to 10 miles away.

It’s true that as a home owner you will become used to the noise and hardly notice it over time. This isn’t true for a potential buyer who is touring your home.

Train Tracks

Properties located next to train tracks will not only experience noise at all hours but also movement. If you’ve ever stood near a passing train, you can feel the movement. This can’t be good for a home’s foundation.

Depending on what the train is carrying, it can also be hazardous. Trains can derail or tip over.

Commercial Property

Properties located near commercial properties can also cause issues. Most buyers would prefer living in a residential area. Properties that back up to or face commercial properties will be more difficult to sell.

As a homeowner you will lose some privacy and possibly be exposed to more traffic and crime.


Living next to a school can be a plus for families with school age children. However, for those that don’t, it can be a pain. Not only will you experience more traffic at certain times of the day, but living next to a school can also be noisy (think HS football stadiums).

In addition, properties zoned to poor preforming schools can deter buyers with children.

Bodies of Water

In many cases, it is desirable to be near a body of water, but not when that body of water can overflow and cause flooding. Research the area to see if flooding is a possibility.

Being in a flood zone will limit your buyers not just due to fear of flooding but also due to cost. Flood insurance is not cheap and will increase the buyer’s overall monthly payment.


It’s not just about fearing ghosts! A lot of buyers would consider this a deal breaker.

Yet I had one buyer tell me that he was guaranteed quiet neighbors! That’s a pro! Another might be that the land will be less likely to be developed into commercial property anytime soon.

Detention Centers

This is a hard one in Texas! We have jails and detention centers everywhere.

I guess this would come down to the type of detention center. A minimum security detention center might not even have a wall around the building. A maximum security detention center will not be aesthetically pleasing. Living next to a detention center could also mean dealing with potential break outs.

Freeways and busy streets

A home that backs up to a busy street or a freeway will cause you resale problems. The increase in noise is a major concern, but pollution is also something to consider.

Even homes that have a large sound barrier wall will still be harder to sell.

Apartment Complex

Having a 2+ story apartment complex looking into your backyard can be a deal breaker when selling a home. Your total loss of privacy can discourage the use of your backyard.

In some cases, the building has shadowed the backyard completely.

High Concentration of Renters

Purchasing a home in a community that consists of predominately rental properties can devalue your property. Although not always the case, rental properties are not cared for as well as owner occupied homes.

We can agree that it’s hard to sell if your neighbors refuse to take care of their yards and neglect home maintenance.

Abandoned Homes

A large number of abandoned, neglected or dilapidated homes with overgrown yards can turn off buyers.

These homes can also bring in squatters.

Water Treatment Plants or Chemical Plants

Besides it being a potential health issue, it can be an eye sore. This is something that is hard to overlook.

We’ve all heard the horror stories of explosions at a chemical plant that leads to contamination in the area.

Cell Phone Towers

FHA/HUD has tightened restrictions on some Minimum Property Requirements and Minimum Property Standards. These can include restrictions on housing or related structures/improvements located near cell phone towers.