Be Careful What You Ask For

November 15th, 2012 · 31 Comments

Many buyers today cry out, “We gotta have stainless steel appliances!”  Well, be careful what you wish for.  This kitchen has stainless steel appliances.

ugly kitchen cabinets fixer-upper new stainless steel appliances Phoenix Arizona home house

I wonder if the TV home shows get a kick-back for pushing stainless steel appliances.  Every episode shows buyers begging for stainless steel and rejecting homes if they don’t have stainless steel.  Maybe Phoenix is different, but most of my clients in the past year don’t care about stainless steel or even want them.  They don’t like the fingerprints.

Tags: Fixer-Upper · Kitchen · Phoenix Homes

31 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Maria // Nov 15, 2012 at 12:37 pm

    I love my black appliances, and every time I look at stainless steel, I think about what a pain it would be to clean it.

  • 2 Parnassus // Nov 15, 2012 at 1:19 pm

    I guess I’m reactionary, but I still find white a clean-looking and attractive color for appliances.

  • 3 Leif // Nov 15, 2012 at 1:28 pm

    Parnassus, I am with you 100%. I think that’s where kitchen appliances are headed. White cabinets too. With a darker paint color on the walls.

  • 4 Nitalynn // Nov 15, 2012 at 2:27 pm

    The problem with white appliances with white cabinets are that the whites rarely match, and that looks worse in my opinion. If I ever do white cabs, I would prefer more of an off-white so I definitely don’t want white appliances. Stainless is all I can think of that would work, even though I’ve never been a huge fan of it.

  • 5 Greeney // Nov 15, 2012 at 3:51 pm

    I have black appliances and love them. Stainless steel would be ok but I don’t care for white since I grew up in mid century all white kitchen homes. I love wood cabinets but wouldn’t mind buttercream cabinets. They look lovely. The latest trend is white cabinets and when we move I might get stuck with them so I might have to get used to them.

  • 6 Nancy // Nov 15, 2012 at 5:02 pm

    Leif, are you referring to news stories like this? Whirpool announced a new premium line of white appliances for the upscale market last summer.
    My Mom always though white meant “clean”, and that is why the appliances still are colored in my kitchen.

  • 7 Jozef // Nov 16, 2012 at 9:23 am

    Those TV shows are all staged. The “buyers” are told what to say, do multiple takes for each room, and most of the houses they look at aren’t even for sale!

  • 8 taria // Nov 16, 2012 at 9:47 am

    I think it was Jenn-Air that was trying to get a coppery color to sell a few years ago. I bought ss for re-sale. I think all in all my favorite is the off white or bisque but colors there are tough to match between brands too. The black seems as hard to keep clean as the ss. Getting a house ready to move into and don’t know where to go with the colors but since I have the ss fridge probably will just lean that way.

  • 9 SAM // Nov 16, 2012 at 11:19 am

    Lower end ss appliances usually just have a VERY thin skin of ss tacked on the outside, crappy grade appliance underneath for a HUGE price. Just so the owner can show off they own ss

  • 10 AZ // Nov 16, 2012 at 11:32 am

    As a young married person in the early 70s I went through the Harvest Gold, Avocado, Almond, Coppertone, and Black appliances over the years; I’ve got all white now because OCD cannot handle the fingerprints on stainless steel.

  • 11 Leif // Nov 16, 2012 at 12:04 pm

    AZ, love it!

  • 12 De Classe // Nov 27, 2012 at 8:56 am

    @ Jozef,

    That’s right! House Hunters is staged (and so are the other to a greater or lesser amount)! House Hunters only feature people who’ve already closed on a house. The other houses either belong to friends and relatives or are ones that came on the market after they closed.

  • 13 kawaiipikachu // Feb 18, 2013 at 12:36 am

    Well personally I don’t like stainless steel style white goods as they look more like something from a hospital especially like those morgue freezers.
    I rather think of dinner with fridges than a dead body on the slab.

  • 14 dzeldaz // Feb 26, 2013 at 3:10 pm

    I had to stop arguing with my husband. We have all stainless steel. Even though I am the one in the kitchen 90% of the time, he is stuck on stainless. I hate it! I have three children and hate the finger and hand prints. I just use Pledge and it works – until another child comes into the kitchen!

  • 15 Asdy // Mar 1, 2013 at 10:24 am

    Stainless steel looks institutional – not a look (or feel) that I want for my home.

  • 16 Kitchen trends to avoid if you want to sell | Gourmet Cooking Tips // Mar 1, 2013 at 10:27 am

    […] Stainless steel appliances: There was a time when immaculate steel appliances were a contingency when entertainment your residence for a sale. That time has passed. According to Phoenix, Ariz., genuine estate attorney Lief Swanson, who publishes a blog Ugly House Photos (read it if we never have; it’s excellent), Phoenix remodelers are saying some-more direct for classical white or black appliances than immaculate steel. Swanson says it’s since a buyers whom he encounters are fearful of a outlines and palm prints that fundamentally uncover adult on immaculate steel appliances. […]

  • 17 Dawn // Mar 6, 2013 at 3:55 am

    I came across this blog and all I can say is I HATE!, DETEST! white anything. I have a white stove/oven, and white dishwasher and I am constantly cleaning spilled stuff, dog slobber off them. I have a stainless steel fridge (all appliances left by previous owners when we bought our house 4 years ago), and the only reason I have “prints” on it, is because I have a hubby who doesn’t wash his dirty, sticky hands (from cooking, lucky me!) when he opens the door. I am cleaning the fridge 1/2 the time I spend with the stove/oven and dishwasher. So I say NO! to white… It only looks clean for so long; like less than 5 minutes in my house!

  • 18 LAlady // Mar 6, 2013 at 3:51 pm

    I have off-white cabinets, and black appliances with iceberg-lettuce green walls and it works! I chose the black appliances for the practical side in me, and I’m glad I did. I agree with the other poster that white appliances can clash with other whites in the kitchen–hard to match. Black, on the other hand, lends a nice punch.

  • 19 Timmy // Mar 8, 2013 at 1:04 pm

    Totally disagree that stainless is going out. I’m a professional flipper and most of my customers pick stainless, with a smaller percentage opting for black (I stage the homes with stainless and provide an appliance swap option). Nobody picks white.

    When I’m buying a house if it has white appliances I always leverage that as a negotiating point to get the price down.

  • 20 Cindy Mahall // Mar 8, 2013 at 1:58 pm

    What is the point of this blog? To make fun of people’s homes? I bet if you decorated your own house it wouldn’t look much better, if any, than some of these. You really need to get a life, I wouldn’t buy a used car from you, after seeing this site, much less a home.

    Cindy Mahall

  • 21 Leif // Mar 8, 2013 at 2:29 pm

    Cindy, I would guarantee that if I sold a used car, it would be cleaned on the outside & inside, vacuumed, with no trash, no marks, no smells. That’s what most people do when selling a car. Why not apply the same standards to selling a home? That’s the point of the blog.
    It has nothing to do with your style, collections, decor, or cleanliness if not selling. Only when selling.

  • 22 Leif // Mar 8, 2013 at 2:33 pm

    I’ve listened to buyers during my 14 years as a Realtor. It’s pretty much the same with all of them: they make negative comments about clutter, smells (bad & too perfumy), outdated decor, & lack of maintenance. I’ve seen sellers smoke cigarettes while we are visiting. I’ve seen dead iguanas, live rats, dirty dishes & toilets, etc.

  • 23 Bobbie Johnson // Mar 10, 2013 at 7:31 am

    My “new” kitchen was black and almond when we moved here so the first one to go was the almond refrigerator. Changed to Black, The second was the stove and it was also changed to black. My kitchen is now all black and i love it. Would not change it to ss. This kitchen is in an 1889 kitchen so there are a lot of limitations, With new windows and light blue paint it is about as “modern” as it can be. Love it’s functionality, New Floors would be so wonderful, but right now, out of the realm of possibility.

  • 24 DC Seller // Mar 24, 2013 at 7:09 pm

    We are in the process of readying the house for market and appliances is a true consideration. When we bought this house 6 yrs ago the sellers had a new ss refrigerator and dishwasher installed and they looked beautiful; the stove had a ss front but black cooktop. When the dishwasher went out it was replaced with one that has a ss interior for noise reduction with a black face. Realtor recommended putting a new ss face on the dishwasher – but at $250 just for a thin ss panel to slide in…not happening. Dishwasher matches stovetop instead of refrigerator. And, have already installed wood flooring in D/R, L/R, F/R, stairs and hallway; carpeting in 5 bedrooms; and tile in kitchen, entry and M/Bath), new paint in entire house, and painted garage walls and floor. The objective is to sell…

  • 25 // Mar 28, 2013 at 7:57 pm

    In Tulsa we remove trash like that everyday.

    Tulsa fast trash service http”//

  • 26 Renee C. // Aug 24, 2013 at 6:16 pm

    I hate my SS appliances. My expensive Kichenaide SS dish washer didn’t last five years. I want all black when we remodel. I also hate granite. All my dishes are chipped. Now if only vinyl flooring would come back into fashion. I have a large den and vinyl is so much more comfortable to walk on then wood or ceramic tile.

  • 27 Manny // Apr 16, 2014 at 10:16 am

    Stainless steel looks modern and slick. My second choice would be white but it does look somewhat dated and boring. An all white kitchen gives me a hospital feel.

  • 28 tulsa junk removal // Jul 26, 2014 at 12:04 pm

    Looks Like a lot of money

  • 29 Carolyn // Jan 9, 2015 at 9:23 am

    I moved into a 1979 home last year and it has a white side-by-side refrigerator, a black double-oven built in, a black dishwasher, white cook-top and white sink. The cabinets are a sort of middle of the road oak (warm color), and they need to be cleaned well and re-finished. The floor is Satillo tile. I want the kitchen to look nice if I decide to sell, so I was thinking of going with all black appliances, and re-finishing the cabinets myself. I’m looking for advice on what color paint to put on the walls, and what color appliances to go with. Thanks.

  • 30 Leif // Jan 9, 2015 at 12:17 pm

    Carolyn, the first priority is removing the Saltillo tile. It is not popular in Phoenix.
    The cabinets can be painted over or stained if you have time and/or money. You could go with white cabinets (very popular right now) and white appliances. The wall color could be a nice rich gray (very popular) or brown/tan.
    Feel free to send me photos of your kitchen to give me a better idea.

  • 31 S Steel // Jun 10, 2016 at 10:18 am

    Funny, all of the remodel pics in this site have stainless…

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