I have a web application that displays a "house listing". This list can be customized and should contain a "edit / delete" action over each item.

At this point I have two ideas to solve this. For both, create a column to the right in the grid and place either:

  1. two links, these links will be visible all the time. with the legend "edit / delete"
  2. two buttons that will be visible only when you mouseover the item, the area for the mouseover will be the entire item width x height

The color of the item could change on the mouseover event.

Any ideas/ recommendations or any other elegant suggestion?


This is a page where you can view your own list of houses and perform any change to the items that you have on that list, let's say that typically the probability that the user will perform an action could be about 50%.

The elements could be something like this listing http://www.property.ie/property-for-sale/dublin/ but just to the 50% of the screen and no use of image.

I'll try to post the wireframe later.

  • What is a typical use case for this screen? Is the user on this page to primarily browse and view the house listing? Or does the user take frequent action on the rows?
    – Jung Lee
    Jun 26, 2013 at 18:11

2 Answers 2


In general, without context, it's better to have visible controls as they clearly "communicate" with user describing app functionality.

Better solution should consider context, like:

  • how often user edits/deletes items,
  • how much screen space you have,
  • what is primary action,
  • who is your users (+ new vs returning).

You even could use combined approach, an example you can see on this site: control for voting for a question and answers is always visible, but controls for voting and flagging comments are visible on mouse hover only.

Maybe attaching some screenshots and some context will help to choose the best approach.


One way to find a simple solution is to think of how would your mobile interface look like. This helps me most of the time to find the simplest solution.

In the current case a toggle button on top of the list to enable/disable the visibility of the edit/delete button could be a solution.

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