Ugliest Houston Neighborhoods

Posted on June 28, 2013 | Back to blog

Houston Real Estate

Best deals are in “ugly” neighborhoods

Here at We Buy Ugly Houses, we look for the ugliest neighborhoods we can in order to find the best deals on investment properties. Maybe you’re looking to avoid these areas. Maybe you’re looking to invest in them, like we are. Just remember that investment is the only way to turn an ugly neighborhood into a prettier one. You can do a lot for a community by being one of the first people who is willing to take a risk on it, get involved, and start making it more beautiful.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder

What makes a neighborhood ugly? High crime and high vacancies can make a neighborhood ugly enough that people will avoid it. Houston is the perfect city for hunting down investment property, or a place to live, on the cheap. This is especially true if you know where to look. Some people think the suburbs are ugly. Other people think the city is dirty. Some people even claim all of Houston is hideous because it’s flat and hot.


According to a report by real estate research firm Neighborhood Scout, Sunnyside is the 6th most dangerous neighborhood in the country, not just in Houston. But take a look at median home prices in Sunnyside, and you might just be surprised. Median appraisals hover around $40,000, and there are plenty of distressed areas from which to pick your next investment property. There’s huge investment potential here because it probably won’t be a dangerous neighborhood forever. Sometimes all it takes is a little leadership from current residents to turn a neighborhood around.


This Houston neighborhood just barely cracked the top 15 on Neighborhood Scout’s list. And like Sunnyside, median home prices hover around $40,000. There are plenty of neighborhoods all over the country where $40,000 is the price of most of the cars in people’s driveways. Buying an ugly house in Columbia and then carefully renting it out or selling it is a great idea. Like all neighborhoods where crime is a problem, you probably won’t have much of a problem as long as you’re careful and know how to mind your own business.

Do your research

Many bad neighborhoods are just way too hairy for a lot of people, investors included. A good research trick is to set up meetings with the leaders in a given neighborhood and start asking them questions about what you plan to do there.  It can be extremely risky in terms of the time value of money to buy a house in a distressed area under the assumption that it will someday turn around. Be sure to do your due diligence before you make a decision.