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Seller considering getting rid of their quirky “she shed” before listing? Ask them to think twice before leveling it.
According to a report released by Zillow on Tuesday, buyers today are actually quite willing to pay a premium for many personalized, unique luxuries, including a glammed-up (or even not so glammed-up) “she shed,” which can command a 2.5 percent sale premium when mentioned in a listing description.
Amenities that appeal to cooking enthusiasts, like steam ovens, pizza ovens or professional-grade appliances, can add as much as 5.3 percent more to a home’s sale price than similar properties that don’t include these items. For the typical U.S. home, that premium adds up to about $17,400.
For this analysis, Zillow examined 271 features and design terms mentioned in listing descriptions of more than two million home sales in 2022 to learn more about which can add to a home’s price and make a difference in how quickly it sells.
Features for a price premium versus fewer days on market
Typically, practical upgrades like doorbell cameras, heat pumps and fenced backyards will help a home sell more quickly, whereas those personalized or unique amenities will bump up the price.
“Not every buyer will appreciate a chef’s kitchen or a putting green in their backyard, but those who do are willing to pay more for these personalized amenities,” Amanda Pendleton, Zillow’s home trends expert, said in the report. “Post-pandemic homebuyers who had plenty of time for self-reflection now have a greater sense of what they want and need in a home.”
Sellers who offer personalized amenities in their listings may also need to exercise a little patience when looking for a buyer, Zillow’s report suggests, since homes with these features tend to take a bit longer to sell. A listing with a “she shed” may command an extra 2.5 percent, but it will also typically spend an extra two days on the market compared to similar listings without it. Likewise, a property with a wine cellar can make a seller an extra 1.2 percent, but will take five days longer to sell than similar properties that don’t include this feature.
Still those buyers out in the market now who can afford to splurge appear more than happy to do so for features that will really make a home stand out.
“Homeowners looking to make the most of their sale can give their listing a wow factor and a dose of luxury by highlighting its outdoor entertainment areas,” Texas-based Zillow Premier Agent Lily Moore said in the report. “Mentioning differentiators like a saltwater pool, pizza oven, outdoor kitchen or putting green in a listing description can set a home apart from other properties for sale nearby and increase its selling potential.”
Trendy features are in vogue
Some of today’s trendiest features, like terrazzo floors and surfaces and textured soapstone countertops are currently winning over buyers more so than classics like marble and granite. A home that includes terrazzo can sell for 2.6 percent more, or about $8,511 on the typical home. Soapstone may help a house sell for 2.5 percent more and four days faster when mentioned in a listing description.
The only classic surface that can still compete with these trendy ones is quartz, which can earn a seller a 2.4 percent premium and may sell a property one day faster than expected.
On the other hand, dated home features, which may suggest to a potential buyer that the property needs work, can hurt a home’s value. Homes that feature tile countertops may sell for 1.1 percent less than expected, and homes with laminate flooring our countertops may sell for 0.6 percent less than similar homes without it. A feature that’s recently flipped in its consumer sentiment is the walk-in closet, which can reduce the price of a property by 0.7 percent. Zillow suggested that buyers may now prefer that space be used for something else.
Still, don’t go crazy with upgrades
Highlighting the existing features like this already present in a seller’s home can ultimately pay off with a higher sales price or fewer days on market. But it’s probably not worth it for sellers to make a point of installing things like a “she shed” or steam oven in order to get a listing ready for market, because it ultimately may not deliver the ROI a seller desires.
“These keywords should be viewed instead as signals of perceived quality,” Zillow’s report notes. “These are the features today’s buyers associate with a ‘nice house,’ along with many other factors that go into that perception.”
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