When you put your home up for sale, the name of the game is getting the best possible price without your listing languishing for months. For the past decade, open floor plans, updated roofing, expansive garages, and other amenities were surefire ways to garner attention from potential buyers and secure stellar offers. However, the tides are turning, and buyers’ must-have lists are looking a little different nowadays.
Recently, Zillow analyzed its listing descriptions, evaluating approximately 3.1 million homes sold in 2020 and 2021, to determine what features buyers are searching for today. Understanding the needs of the modern buyer can be the key to securing an offer quickly, so read on to learn more about a few highly sought amenities that will make picky buyers take notice.
When it comes to speedy sales, having sustainable features is a good way to attract attention. Zillow found that homes with these eco-friendly features sold more quickly than their counterparts:
- Seismic retrofits: Homes with this feature, which makes houses more resistant to earthquakes, sold 19 days faster.
- EV charging stations: Homes with EV charging stations sold 9.5 days faster.
- Drought resistant: Homes with drought-resistant landscaping sold 9.2 days faster.
- Turf: This feature can help a home sell 8 days faster.
- Double-pane windows: Homes with this energy-efficient feature can sell 6.9 days faster.
- Programmable thermostats: Homes with this feature can sell 6 days faster.
Of course, geography matters. Seismic retrofits are predominantly found on the West Coast, but if you’re selling a house in New Jersey, it’s unlikely to matter. While these features do not necessarily guarantee greater home value, they can certainly speed up the home-selling process.
The perfect remote-friendly work environment
Since the onset of the pandemic, many companies embraced remote or hybrid work, meaning quite a few homeowners are spending more time than ever clocking in from home. Because of this, remote-friendly work environments are crucial. Prospective homeowners are now looking for features like fast internet, a private home office space, soundproofed rooms, and “zoom rooms,” so they can curate the ideal work-from-home space.
According to the Zillow analysis, mentioning a zoom room or home office space in your listing description can help you sell your house six days faster than expected. Work-life balance looks very different today, and the modern home should reflect this change. A small desk in the corner or a makeshift office in the living room just won’t cut it anymore.
A focus on design
Many prospective buyers are also searching for homes with updated features. For example, removing popcorn ceilings in your home can provide a clean and sophisticated look, fit for relaxation. By removing outdated ceiling styles like this, you could expect to sell your home seven days faster.
Styling your home to create a rejuvenating and refreshing look is also essential. To sell your property five to seven days faster, consider adding boho or mid-century decor.
Over the past few years, features that used to be optional to homebuyers now stand at the top of their must-have lists. You shouldn’t add these features to your listing if it doesn’t accurately describe your home, and Zillow did point out that correlation isn’t necessarily causation — these features could just be indicative of a higher-quality home that’s going to be in high demand. However, it’s clear that these features are attractive to buyers, so if they describe your home, be sure to advertise that in your listing. The more appealing you can make your house at every stage of the process, the better.
At the end of the day, the speed at which your home is sold is largely dependent upon similar listings in the area and the needs of the community. Drought-resistant landscaping, for example, will be less important to buyers in New England than to those in New Mexico. When preparing to sell your home, adding these amenities is a good start, but if you’re in doubt, don’t hesitate to reach out to a realtor or property consultant for more guidance.
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