luxury buyers

Value vs. Price: What Matters Most to Luxury Buyers

The Institute All 1 Comment

When selling a property, it’s often about how you frame the positive features that hook a luxury buyer. Though many potential buyers will focus on the price tag, it’s a real estate professional’s job to get them to see past the number into what exactly they are going to get for their money. Before we dive into different ways to emphasize a property’s value over its price, let’s define exactly what we are talking about when referencing value and price.

Price: The measured monetary value of a given property, often based off of going rates for similar real estate in the surrounding area.

Value: What the buyer of the property is actually getting for their money. This can also be thought of as how much a buyer’s dollar is being stretched in a given purchase.

In many cases, once a buyer understands the value of a given property, it reflects in the price they’re willing to pay. It’s the responsibility of the real estate professional involved in the transaction to know which features add value to the property and to understand the mindset of affluent buyers. Going off of that point, clients generally expect to be educated on the value of a home before negotiating a price.

Now that we have established the difference between price and value, let’s dig deeper into some ways to emphasize a property’s value rather than just its price.

1. Highlight unique features

Most homebuyers love finding a property with one-of-a-kind features, which can exponentially raise the value of the property if showcased correctly. Before listing a property, make note of interesting features that are difficult to find elsewhere so that you can emphasize them in your marketing. Does the property have original hardwood floors? Do the bathrooms have custom tiling? Is there a room in the home with skylights? Finding a detail that will grab an audience, and potentially taking steps to enhance this feature before selling, can increase the value and make buyers feel better about the price. These small touches are usually a huge asset when it comes time to sell, as they might be the final push a buyer needs in order to make the leap. This is crucial to understand when learning what luxury buyers really want

2. Compare to surrounding properties

As a real estate professional, if you come across a property that is uncommon for the area in which you’re listing, be sure to communicate that to luxury buyers. For example, selling a property with a large yard in a city otherwise dominated by homes with little-to-no yard gives it increased value. Another example would be a property with historic significance in a market saturated by developments and brand new homes. As a general rule, most people want things that other people don’t have. Unique features make the listing feel that much more special and boost the desirability of the property. The right buyer will understand the value of a home with a story and will agree to a price accordingly. Try adding “rare” or “uncommon” to the headlines of online listings to catch the attention of buyers.

3. Feature properties based on the target audience

When you’re deciding the core values of a given property, consider the kind of person who would be interested in purchasing the home. This is where understanding how your client developed wealth, and whether it is new wealth or old wealth, can help. For example, let’s say a given property is flashy and more geared toward luxury buyers who like to entertain. That being said, it also happens to be close to one of the best elementary schools in the area. It would probably be a better use of time and marketing money to highlight the high-end features than the surrounding school district. When determining your target audience, you can usually estimate the type of buyer you’ll be dealing with based off of past experience, the demographics of a given neighborhood and the buying patterns of the specific market in which you’re selling.

This can be assessed on a case-by-case basis, but keep your audience in mind when determining the core values of a property. Definitely include all of the important details in your listing, but put time into deciding which features to put front and center.

4. Smart marketing

It’s no secret that attention spans are getting shorter and shorter, which is why it’s important to put the key messages of your marketing first. Once you establish what gives your property value, announce it boldly in your listings online and in print. Real estate professionals often make the mistake of including pertinent details too far down in their property descriptions, and clients miss it. If at all possible, feature photos of the parts of the property which give it value. Visuals usually speak louder than words, so be sure to show potential clients exactly what your property has to offer. You might want to consider hiring a professional photographer for complex listings, as iPhones are great to capture certain spaces but others might need a special touch to really shine.

5. Leave the price off the listing

Sometimes properties are tough to sell because prospective luxury buyers see the price and run for the hills—all before knowing anything about the property. Leaving the price off of the listing is a technique that some real estate agents use when they want to sell clients on the house before even telling them the list price. A benefit for leaving the price off the listing is that usually, the people who get in touch to discuss the property are genuinely interested in what it has to offer—enough interest to put the energy into inquiring further. This technique also effectively vets the buyers who only look at the price in comparison to the value of a property.

6. Talk up value vs. price at open houses

Open houses are a great opportunity to emphasize the true value of a property in person. As the host of an open house, the way you talk about the different rooms and features forms a strong positive or negative association in the minds of potential buyers. Stressing the value of a home for the price of the listing is almost always an effective way to communicate that the buyer is spending their money wisely. Spend extra time in rooms with unique features and draw attention to the spaces that add value to the property for the best results.  


  1. Love article. Too often Realtors themselves distract from value by focusing on price per square foot….such a mistake.

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