Better photos and descriptions bring more money when your home sells

AMES — A Iowa State University study of the real estate site Zillow finds they way you describe your house could increase the amount you get in the sale.

Cheng Nie says phrases like “upscale bathroom fixtures” or “a sunlit kitchen” get noticed.” “We find that when you have the most subjective descriptions, in Zillow it actually influenced the price, it helps boost the selling price of those properties,” he says.

Nie is an assistant professor of statistics and says the descriptions help a buyer determine if a home meets their checklist of expectations and desires. He says getting more interest is simple. “Better descriptions of the house — and also have beautiful photos — those are the key to be able to boost the selling price,” Nie says.

For buyers, he says the descriptions can help you determine if the house has what you are looking for. But, he says it’s important to not focus on just one site to determine if the price on a house is right. “I think consult opinions from multiple sources might be the best option for the buyers,” he says.

The information in the study was gathered well before the house buying frenzy that hit during the pandemic. “It’s actually prior to the pandemic, I can only imagine this influence will actually be bigger during the pandemic,” he says.

Nie says not many people were able to physically visit houses during the pandemic, and that made the use of the descriptions and pictures even more important during that time.