Trulia’s Real Estate Lab Can Show Agents How To Write Listings That Get Homes Sold

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So, with the right listing, even a dilapidated house in the Fair Park area could sell?

Maybe so, according to new research from

Mixing science and selling, Trulia’s newly minted Real Estate Lab has just published research showing the psychological link between “color” language in real estate listings and a buyer’s attraction.

In an analysis that looked at the frequency with which phrases appear in descriptions of listings across the country, Trulia’s Real Estate Lab found that the terms “parlor floor,” “formal gardens,” “paneled library,” “magnificent estate,” and “lutron lighting” were those most associated with luxury properties. The average price of a listing that uses the phrase “parlor floor” was $4.936 million, according to Trulia.

The same study found that “minimum commission applies,” “lead based paint notices,” “mold-like substance,” “defective paint” and “city inspection” are associated with the cheapest listings. The average listing price of “minimum commission applies” was about $28,000.

So, it’s not just positive language that can rope a buyer in. Interesting, right? So how does this help agents?

According to Trulia’s chief economist Jed Kolko, “It can help agents figure out in their local market what are the types of features that matter locally.”

To that end, Realty Trac just launched a brokerage network that will focus on deciphering the “tribal language” of real estate markets. That really resonates with one of our mottos here at Real estate is a hyper-local business. But I love that more people are doing the research to back that up, and show how there is no “national real estate market.”

My favorite part of this Inman News writeup illustrates that point:

Asked about future projects of Trulia’s Real Estate Lab, Kolko said his team may attempt to identify phrases associated with listings that have longer and shorter shelf lives, and also decipher how phrases may carry different meanings in different markets.

“Once-in-a-lifetime opportunity might mean something very different when it appears in Los Angeles than when it appears in Detroit,” he said.


Joanna England

If Executive Editor Joanna England could house hunt forever, she absolutely would. Instead she covers the North Texas housing market and the economy for While she started out with the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University, Joanna's work has appeared in The Dallas Morning News as well as several local media outlets. When she's not knitting or hooping, or enjoying White Rock Lake, she's behind the lens of her camera. She lives in East Dallas with her husband, son, and their furry and feathered menagerie.

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