Does having a clunker in your front yard help your property value?

I could make this the shortest post in my illustrious 😉 blogging career with just one word: “No”, but that probably wouldn’t be helpful.  Most people know that having clunkers in your front yard WILL NOT contribute to property values in a positive way. Now if you want to decrease the value of your home that’s another matter. I was inspecting a home recently and while driving through the neighborhood saw these cars.

Are clunkers good for your home's value?

What do you about this? Having broken down cars in your front yard contribute to what is known as neighborhood blight, which is just a fancy way of describing areas that are in a state of disrepair. When buyers drive through neighborhoods looking for a home, seeing broken down cars is usually just the outward signs of a neighborhood, and the homes within it, that has not been taken care of. This effects property values because these homes sell for less. These sales are then used in future appraisals and you have a slow downward spiral of property values.

Communities have attempted to prevent this from happening by passing city ordinances that restrict this type of thing. In other areas there are homeowners associations that develop covenants and restrictions. While some rules that these associations make are not popular, I do think that the overall effect on property values is positive. What other things have you seen in a neighborhood that contribute to blight? Leave me a message, I would like to hear from you.

If you have any real estate appraisal related questions you can call me at 205.243.9304, email me, or connect with me on Facebook., Twitter, or Youtube.


  1. I agree with you. My last neighborhood had a strong HOA and there were NO junky vehicles parked anywhere (other than perhaps in a garage, unseen). It was lovely. My new HOA is similar, and when I see a junker pop up, I know it’ll be gone in a few days.

    Other things that contribute to blight: overgrown yards and untrimmed bushes. Once a lot of properties get really weedy and messy, it gets easier for others to follow suit. Those houses also seem to collect a lot of junk in the yards.

    • Overgrown yards are one of the easiest things to fix, but if gone unchecked they can give the appearance of a vacant or foreclosed home, which does not help a neighborhood. I have heard of some HOA’s that will mow your grass and charge you for it, that is after warning you to do it yourself! While they can be annoying sometimes I think overall they do contribute to better looking neighborhoods and higher property values.


  1. […] Tom Horn, whose business is real estate appraisal, addressed the question of whether or not having a clunker parked in your front yard helps your property value in his Birmingham Appraisal Blog a decade ago. […]

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