The Top Keywords for Your Home Listing, According to Zillow

A picture may be worth a thousand words, but specific words are worth a thousand dollars ... or more.

New research by Zillow reports that simply mentioning certain home features on your real estate listing might boost your home's sale price.

The Zillow research team pulled data from 4.6 million home sales in the United States between 2017 and 2018 to determine which phrases appeared in listings where the house sold for more than the expected price.

The following are the 10 features that correlated to bumps in sale price — the bumps ranged in scale from 24% to 34%:

  • Steam oven
  • Professional appliance
  • Wine cellar
  • Steam shower
  • Pot filler
  • Shed/garage studio
  • Heated floor
  • Waterfall countertop
  • Outdoor kitchen
  • Prep sink

"We're not saying you should build or add these things to your home just to help it sell," writes Zillow economist Jeff Tucker in a blog post. "We're also not saying that it's necessarily these features that account for the price boost."

But if you do have these features in your home, it might be worth mentioning them in your listing, just in case it nets you a sweet payday.

Zillow also determined the 10 most common phrases in listings that sold eight to 11 days faster than expected:

  • Open shelving
  • Pergola
  • Midcentury
  • Subway tile
  • Exposed brick
  • Smart light
  • Farmhouse sink
  • Butcher block
  • Smart thermostat
  • Barn door

As Tucker indicated, it's probably not worth installing any of these elements just for the sale. Instead, you're better off taking a look at what you already have and adding any relevant phrases into your listing.


Stefanie Waldek

Stefanie Waldek

Stefanie is a New York–based writer and editor. She has served on the editorial staffs of Architectural Digest, ARTnews, and Oyster.com, a TripAdvisor company, before setting out on her own as a freelancer. Her beats include architecture, design, art, travel, science, and history, and her words have appeared in Architectural Digest, Condé Nast Traveler, Popular Science, Mental Floss, Galerie, Jetsetter, and History.com, among others. In another life, she'd be a real estate broker since she loves searching for apartments and homes.