The Features that Can Help Your Home Sell for More Money (and Faster)

A new report from Zillow highlights the amenities, appliances, and features that can help homes sell for as much as 5% more.

While plenty of people are wondering whether they should buy a home at all in 2023 in the face of challenging economic circumstances and an increasingly challenging housing market, the cycle of buying and selling homes ticks on. And there’s actually some good news for those hoping to sell a home this year: New research from home search site Zillow indicates that current home-buyers braving this uncertain market are still willing to pay for the specific features that speak to them, and certain amenities may even help a home get a higher offer.

After years (maybe even decades) of experts telling sellers and homeowners to make their homes appealing to the most people possible, guiding them away from distinctive or excessively personal choices that might turn off potential buyers come time to sell the house, we may be shifting in a new direction, as homes with specific features sell for more than comparable home without those features.

outside of white she shed with black trim
Ali Harper

According to Zillow’s research, listings that mention high-end cooking amenities such as steam ovens, pizza ovens, and professional-grade appliances can sell for as much as 5.3% more than similar homes that don’t have these features (or at least don’t mention them in their property listings). Other trendy statement features such as terrazzo and a she shed can lead to a 2.5% spike in sale price, which can mean a lot of money depending on where you live—more than $13,000, if your home is close to the current average national home sale price of $535,800.

“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,” said Amanda Pendleton, Zillow’s home trends expert, in a statement accompanying the report. “Post-pandemic home buyers who had plenty of time for self-reflection now have a greater sense of what they want and need in a home.”

These features may help your home sell for more money, but they may also mean it takes longer to sell the home—homes with she sheds may sell for 2.5% more, on average, but they also tend to spend extra time on the market (an extra two days, typically, Zillow’s research found). If a quick sale is your focus and a little more money is less of a priority, take note: Zillow’s data also shows that homes that sell faster than expected have more practical features, such as doorbell cameras, heat pumps, and fenced backyards.

Just as the right features can boost your home’s selling price, others can hurt it. According to Zillow’s data, certain finishes or features might indicate that a home is dated and in need of work—signaling to buyers that it may not be worth top-dollar. Homes with tile countertops can sell for 1.1% less than expected, and homes with laminate floors or countertops can sell for 0.6% less. These percentages may be small, but if you’re hoping to get the highest-possible offer for your home, every percentage point counts.

kitchen modern terrazzo floors

Emily Followill

According to Zillow’s data, the top features that help homes sell for more than expected are:

  • Steam oven | 5.3%
  • Pizza oven | 3.7%
  • Professional appliances | 3.6%
  • Terrazzo | 2.6%
  • She shed | 2.5%
  • Soapstone | 2.5%
  • Quartz | 2.4%
  • Modern farmhouse | 2.4%
  • Hurricane shutters / storm shutters | 2.3%
  • Mid-century | 2.3%

The top features that can help a home sell faster than expected are:

  • Doorbell camera | 5.1 days faster
  • Soapstone | 3.8 days faster
  • Open shelving | 3.5 days faster
  • Heat pump | 3 days faster
  • Fenced (back)yard | 2.9 days faster
  • Mid-century | 2.8 days faster
  • Hardwood | 2.4 days faster
  • Walkability / walkable | 2.4 days faster
  • Shiplap | 2.3 days faster
  • Gas furnace | 2.3 days faster
patio eating area with grill and pizza oven
Edmund Barr

How to Use This Information

Whether you’re prepping your home to sell (now, in the near future, or years from now) or simply planning some home improvement projects to increase your own enjoyment of the property, be sure to approach your home (and property listing) holistically, instead of only chasing the data. The specific features or reasons a home sold for more money or in less time might not appear in the data Zillow uses, which is why it’s important to thoroughly assess the features of your space in its own right before you make any major decisions.

Also, there will be regional differences that impact how much any of these features could impact your home’s sellability: What might be a key feature in one state may be a avoid-at-all-costs feature in another. (Think the outdoor pool: In California or Arizona, it might be a huge selling point, while in the Northeast it might be a maintenance concern for potential buyers.)

Generally speaking, this data—and the features it points to as improving home sale price—should be seen as “signals of perceived quality,” the Zillow report says. If you already have some of these features (or want them for yourself), you should install them and be sure to mention them in your property listing when you want to sell. Just don’t go out of your way to make improvements or install features that you won’t enjoy, just in the interest of potentially selling your house for a higher price. In other words, if you’ve got it, flaunt it—but if you don’t, there are plenty of other ways to help your home shine.

Was this page helpful?
Better Homes & Gardens is committed to using high-quality, reputable sources—including peer-reviewed studies—to support the facts in our articles. Read about our editorial policies and standards to learn more about how we fact check our content for accuracy.
  1. U.S. Census Bureau and U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. “Average Sales Price of Houses Sold for the United States [ASPUS].” Retrieved from FRED, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.

Related Articles