The Most Popular House Listings Last Week All Share This Controversial Design Style

Here’s the right way to nail the aesthetic.
maximalist living room

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If you want to sell your home quickly (and for asking price), most stagers and real-estate agents will tell you to remove all traces of personality from the interiors—colorful walls, family photos, brightly patterned window treatments. But does that advice really hold true? Based on’s most-viewed property listings from last week, having floral kitchen wallpaper, a nautical blue living room, or a Santa Claus–red exterior isn’t necessarily a deterrent to buyers. 

The three top homes all featured über-maximalist aesthetics. First, there was a $195,000 house in Detroit with pastel bathrooms galore and chartreuse carpeting. A Spokane, Washington, home with patterned wall tile everywhere also drew eyeballs, followed by a beach escape in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, with quirky architecture and trippy green-brown granite kitchen countertops.’s senior editor, Erik Gunther, explains the evident interest in these far-out spaces: “People can’t believe that an owner took the time and effort to truly embrace over-the-top decor. They’re also a refreshing antidote to the matchy-matchy, perfectly designed homes we’ve been seeing for so long.”

We won’t shock you with photos of the properties (because to be honest, they take the maximalist trend a little too far), but there is still something to be learned from their recognition. Here’s how we’d reinterpret some of their wildest features in a way that would entice curious online browsers to actually stop by.


Photography by Stacy Zarin Goldberg

In a pattern-heavy Washington, D.C., home, a neon green living room acts as an energetic reprieve from the busyness of a striped dining room and jungle-print kids’ space.

Not Your Grandmother’s Granite

Photography by Kara Mercer

A wavy-veined granite countertop recalls stormy seas in this nautical-inspired Seattle kitchen.

Mismatched Bathroom Tile

Photography by Becky Kimball

After scoring a deal at a warehouse sale, Kim Spradlin Wolfe covered her 400-square-foot guesthouse completely in mismatched tile. The 10 different hues are now the best conversation starter (and budget saver) she could ask for.

Kate McGregor


Kate McGregor covers everything related to the home, from design inspiration to IKEA hacks. She has been the market assistant at ELLE Decor where she focused on curating product for the print magazine’s market pages.