The DNAinfo archives brought to you by WNYC.
Read the press release here.

Want Your Apartment to Sell Faster? Use These Buzzwords

By Amy Zimmer | March 10, 2015 9:43am | Updated on March 10, 2015 5:57pm
 Mention that this Cobble Hill apartment is near a Farmer's Market and you may have yourself a deal.
Mention that this Cobble Hill apartment is near a Farmer's Market and you may have yourself a deal.
View Full Caption

BROOKLYN — Want your home to sell fast? Better pay careful attention to which words you use in the listing.

According to an analysis of thousands of home descriptions in Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens and the Bronx by real estate search engine StreetEasy, the keywords you include in your real estate ad are just as important in attracting attention as your photos, price and location.

For example, in Brooklyn, a description of an apartment like this would be catnip to would-be buyers:

This home has the best of all worlds: classic pre-war charm — exposed brick, French doors, a wood-burning fireplace — that's been updated with a renovated kitchen.  A short walk to the farmer's market and minutes from transportation.

By comparison, a listing that relies on generic phrases like "modern kitchen" or "large room" wouldn't be as attractive to local buyers, StreetEasy found.

Buzzwords can also scare buyers away, the search engine found. For example, apartments described as a "must see" or "priced to sell" typically didn't sell as quickly.

Here are StreetEasy's top keywords for each of the boroughs:


Brooklyn buyers are looking for character, so it's all about highlighting the "classic Brooklyn charm" of the borough while also noting upgrades. "Homes with a shabby-chic appeal that connects to Brooklyn’s industrial heritage resonate very well with buyers," StreetEasy data scientist Alan Lightfeldt said.

If you're listing an apartment in Brooklyn, consider these words:

French doors
White oak
Wood burning fireplace
Farmers market
Private Storage
Fitness Center
Air conditioning
Renovated kitchen


"Besides ample amenities and storage, Manhattan buyers want peace and quiet… in a great location," Lightfeldt said, "They want to be at the center of it all, but they also want to turn it off and find reprieve when they need to."

Here are the top words for Manhattan real estate listings:

Kitchen cabinetry
Closet storage
Trader Joe’s
Building laundry
Pin drop


Buyers in Queens want a "relatively easy commute" to Manhattan, so playing up nearby transportation is key, Lightfeldt said. "There is a distinct appetite for convenience and connectivity in Queens."

Here are Queens' top keywords:

Midtown Manhattan
Subway lines
Block away
Minutes away
7 train
One stop
Short walk
Newly renovated
Sponsor unit
24-hour doorman


Successful Bronx listings are all about shining a light on communal spaces for family living, according to Lightfeldt, since buyers there are "searching for a home that provides plenty of space for a growing brood."

Here's what to highlight if you're listing in The Bronx.

Living room
Dining room
Dining area
Entry foyer
Stainless steel appliances
Eat in kitchen
Windowed kitchen