Updated May 10th, 2019
Sometimes you’ve got a major fixer-upper on your hands that you don’t know what to do with. You don’t really have the time or resources to repair it and sell it on your own.
Or maybe you just have bad memories in a particular home and wanted it off your hands yesterday.
Enter We Buy Ugly Houses, a company that is famous for buying houses as is, all cash.
But is it a scam? You’re about to find out. Here are reviews of We Buy Ugly Houses.
What is We Buy Ugly Houses?
Companies like We Buy Ugly Houses purchase undesirable homes for cash. They then repair and resell those homes to make a profit. While there are many home investment companies that use this formula, We Buy Ugly Houses is the most famous due to their nation-wide caveman marketing campaign.
Headquartered in Dallas, Texas, their parent company, HomeVestors of America, now has been in operation in its current form since 1989. They operate on a franchise model and have a presence in 33 states with plans to extend into the remaining 17.
Their quick, all-cash offers, extend to most types of homes (e.g. single-family homes, condos, townhouses, duplexes, multi-tenant properties, and a few commercial properties). The only type of home that they definitely do not buy is mobile homes.
Reviews of We Buy Ugly Houses
“They are a company that makes money by buying property for 60-70 cents on the dollar (or lower).
Some will argue, it is a bad thing, others that it can get homeowners out of a desperate situation.
If you have a home you can’t sell because you can’t afford the repairs (maybe you inherited an old home) then someone needs to invest money into it. No one is going to invest money and get nothing back except non-profits and I don’t know of any.” Jorge (Gilbert, AZ)
“In no way should you EVER sell to these people. They say it is a “lifesaver” but it has been a nightmare! Stringing me along for months as I made payments and then after signing to paperwork… I am STILL MAKING PAYMENTS. No customer service number, the lawyer doesn’t return calls, Real Estate agent doesn’t return calls or texts, All persons contacted have full mailboxes so not even a message can be left. Meanwhile, my account sits in the negative as I thought this was a sale, not a rip off as it is. This ruined my thanksgiving and soon to be Christmas. Please don’t sell them your house. A lawsuit is my only recourse.” Joseph R Jennings (Online)
Should you use We Buy Ugly Houses?
Choose a Clever Partner Agent instead and sell your home for more.
What Are the Benefits of We Buy Ugly Houses?
The benefit of using a company like We Buy Ugly Houses is that your home will tend to sell quickly. These companies have a very specific business plan that works only for a very specific type of buyer.
Here are the two situations in which using a homebuyer like this could actually be a good idea:
Your home is seriously damaged.
Because companies like We Buy Ugly Houses purchase all of their real estate “as is” and often sight unseen, if you currently hold the title to a property that has significant structural or cosmetic damage to it, then it’s likely that you are an ideal buyer. This is because these companies are willing to buy your home from you, even if you might think it’s beyond repair.
If you sell to a home investment company instead of a traditional buyer, you can essentially sell your fixer-upper (however extreme the condition) as a turnkey home. You can avoid the responsibility of having to make any expensive renovations and upgrades. To do this, simply list your home as “for sale best offer” or work with a real estate agent to transfer it over.
You need to move quickly.
If you don’t have time to go through the traditional real estate process of listing, showings, inspections, negotiations, and closing, then you might also be an ideal candidate to sell to a company like We Buy Ugly Houses, even if you don’t think that your home is “ugly.”
Perhaps you need to move ASAP for a job, you need to relocate due to a sick family member, or you are going through a divorce and just need the house to be sold.
Are There Drawbacks to Using We Buy Ugly Houses?
The main drawback to selling your home to a company like We Buy Ugly Houses is that you are going to lose out on a lot of money. This isn’t necessarily a scam if you go into the situation already aware of this.
However, many homeowners find out after the fact that the company (or others like it) made them an offer on their home that was significantly below market value, but presented like the best and only deal they were likely to get. Due to the quick “buy, flip, sell” model of We Buy Ugly Houses and other iBuyers, they operate on thin margins and can’t offer you a good price on your home.
This is why selling your home to a company like this is only really a good idea to a very specific type of homeowner. This main drawback, the price, is the very same reason that enables the two benefits. If the folks at We Buy Ugly Houses actually planned on paying you what your house is worth, then they wouldn’t buy it from you in a hurry or in a bad state.
All of the money they save on the sale goes into the restoration and marketing of the property, so they can make a slim profit.
So, if you have a little bit more time on your hands, or even a small budget to spruce things up, it’s worth it to consider an alternative to these ugly homes investment companies instead.
What Are the Alternatives to We Buy Ugly Houses?
If you have the budget and patience, here are the best alternative ways to go:
Make Vital Repairs Yourself.
Investing even the smallest amount of money into your home can increase its appraisal value.
If the paint is peeling, give it a fresh coat. If the lawn has died, set a watering schedule, plant some flowers, and add some fertilizers. Invest in a plumber and electrician to come out and make vital repairs. Steam clean the floors to get rid of any mold or mildew.
You’ll be surprised what a few days of hard work and a few thousand dollars can do.
Work with a Clever Partner Agent
If you are interested in pocketing more of the sales price of your home and need it sold quickly, consider working with a Clever Partner Agent. You’ll get the full services of a traditional real estate agent for a listing fee of just $3,000 or 1% of the home price over $350,000. A Partner Agent can help you sell your home fast and for a much higher price than We Buy Ugly Houses can offer you.
You can make your agent aware that you are working on an accelerated timeline. You can also complete the move and work with them remotely to finish the sale. Especially in today’s digital age, agents are completely used to working with clients who can’t be there physically. There’s no reason to settle with We Buy Ugly Houses when you can still sell quickly and for top dollar with a Clever Partner Agent.