These words can help sell your home

A study of 300,000 real estate listings finds some phrases can work wonders when it comes to attracting potential buyers.

By Bruce Kennedy Feb 18, 2013 9:42AM

Image: Home purchase ( Ryan McVay/Photodisc Green/Getty Images)Want to sell your home? A survey suggests that certain phrases and buzzwords in real-estate ads help move some properties faster --- and that those terms can vary depending on where you live and the neighborhood price range.

A study by of 300,000 real estate listings made last year found certain words or phrases highlighting a property's attributes and upgrades "seem to carry a special weight with people looking for a home."


Certain terms were universally popular. As you might expect, "beautiful" was the most frequently used word in overall real estate listings, followed by "hardwood floors" and "stainless-steel appliances."


But the study found a localized popularity of some terms or phrases, depending on the region.


People looking for homes on the West Coast reportedly had a preference for "beautiful" homes with "mountain views" or "ocean views" -- as well as "gated communities."


But East Coast home seekers were attracted by places listed as ready to "move right in," "renovated" and with "gleaming hardwood floors."


In the Midwest, terms like "spacious living room," "attached garage" and “plenty of storage” were big sellers for listings -- while Southern real estate listings that featured a “tennis court,” “high ceilings” and “community pool” also did well.


Point2Homes also looked at descriptions of homes in New York City that sold faster than the 180-day average for that market. And given the Big Apple’s cramped living spaces, it’s not too surprising that some top words and phrases for NYC real-estate listings included  “closet space,” “city views,” “soaking tub,” “sunny,” “open kitchen,” “oversized windows” and “elegant.”


As any professional writer will tell you, a good description can be worth its weight in gold. Elaine Clayman, managing director with the venerable luxury real-estate firm Brown Harris Stevens, says creative use of language can certainly attract consumers and help sell homes faster. “Soaking tub is more inviting than bath tub, for example,” she notes. “Private storage is also more compelling than public storage.”


And there are certain terms that can help boost potential sales for homes listed at $500,000 and above. “Private” is a very popular adjective in those listings, along with “well-maintained” and a “covered front porch.”


There are some interesting variations as well when you get into the so-called luxury ($1 million to $5 million) and mega-luxury ($5 million and over) ranges. Luxury homes reportedly do well when they’re advertised as having “ocean views,” a “guest house” and a “media room.”  But people considering mega-luxury properties were attracted to homes featuring “a pool house,” “a wine room” and “a home theater.”


More on moneyNOW

Feb 18, 2013 5:10PM



Run like hell if you see:



handyman special

lots of potential


priced below market


Feb 18, 2013 4:45PM
Sounds like they've been listening to HGTV too much...
Feb 18, 2013 5:37PM

Why do they print articles like this? If you call on a listed house, the Realtor will inevitably say: There is an offer pending or sale pending or mumbo jumbo pending. What they won't say is-- it's been on the market for X days because I tell everyone an offer or sale is pending. I am also a slum-lord and want this house dirt cheap. A few REAL tips from someone who's family has been in real estate for nearly a century: figure everything out about where you want to live first (location location location). Curb view homes for attributes you like. Get an inspector ready. Ask your Realtor key questions like: do you own multiple homes? Ever been professionally sued? Will you pull me a title search to see how long the seller was in the home? Do you or anyone you know personally own this home?

Here's the deal... home prices have been rising steadily, but one in FIVE houses in America are in a default to foreclosure state. Banks dumped thousands of homes onto the market (were forced to) but no new glut is evident. When all these things don't add up, what does add up is- manipulation. Do your homework, the odds of continued short selling is highly unlikely so the new adage will be-- if you believed the broker and bought it, regardless of it's problems, you got it for a long long time.

Feb 18, 2013 1:39PM
A couple or few words come to mind...Cheap, Fire Sale and Gotta move.
Feb 18, 2013 6:38PM
If you buy a foreclosure you have to be careful. Some of them have to have title insurance, because during the robo signing the papers were filed out of the proper order. They still have a lot of shadow inventory. Google how long it takes to foreclose, it is about 280 days from the date the bank files the paperwork with the court.  The fed policy is giving real estate a subsidized bounce with keeping interest rates low. I am not sure were prices will go when rates start to go up. Get good legal advice.
Feb 19, 2013 1:02PM
Feb 19, 2013 7:31AM
Best words to sell a house are these - Desperate, must sell. Price lowered. Financial markets are running at all time highs. Market crash followed by a housing market crash is right around the corner.
Feb 18, 2013 9:23PM
How about FREE? You can't be sure in this market, but, it's worth a try.
Please help us to maintain a healthy and vibrant community by reporting any illegal or inappropriate behavior. If you believe a message violates theCode of Conductplease use this form to notify the moderators. They will investigate your report and take appropriate action. If necessary, they report all illegal activity to the proper authorities.
100 character limit
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?


Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.

Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.

Trending NOW

What’s this?


[BRIEFING.COM] The stock market finished the Tuesday session on the defensive after spending the entire day in a steady retreat. The S&P 500 (-0.6%) posted its third consecutive decline, while the small-cap Russell 2000 (-0.9%) slipped behind the broader market during afternoon action.

Equity indices were pressured from the start following some overnight developments that weighed on sentiment. The market tried to overcome the early weakness, but could not stage a sustained rebound, ... More