Selling Your Chicago Luxury Home: It’s All in the Smell

From beach breezes to woodsy cabins, a number of smells are considered when creating the perfect unique aroma for a luxury property.

From beach breezes to woodsy cabins, a number of smells are considered when creating the perfect unique aroma for a luxury property.

One of my favorite things about the real estate market is seeing what it is that gets buyers going. Sure, there’s the standard “location, location, location,” but over the years, I’ve seen buyers gravitating toward everything from high-tech kitchen contraptions to his-and-her master baths to smart toilets.

But new trends indicate there may be an even simpler factor at play when it comes to making your home attractive to buyers: the smell.

Both the New York Times and the Wall St. Journal recently covered this movement, in which condo developers are infusing multi-million dollar new construction properties with a whiff of beach breeze or a scent of fresh floral. The smells are custom created to represent the design and atmosphere of the building and enhance the experience for a potential buyer.

While this trend is making its way into residential real estate, it’s hardly a new idea. Abercrombie and Fitch has been pumping their signature smell into malls for years, effectively branding the air to young shoppers. Disneyland has sent the smell of peppermint candy out of the vents near its main entrance to welcome guests into the park. It seems that the specialized scent is an idea that can really catch on when selling expensive luxury homes and condos.

I used to tell my clients that baking cookies helped in selling a home, no matter how expensive it is. But these scents are going far beyond the fresh-baked aroma, and a sophisticated fragrance can really differentiate a home from others.

The idea is to engage another sense for a potential buyer and give them another thing to remember about a property. Just as they might feel a marble bath, taste a cool drink during a walk-through or hear soft music playing in the background, adding a layer of subtle-but-memorable scent is another marketing tool on top of that.

But bringing in the olfactory sense isn’t a matter of spritzing from an aerosol can before opening the front door. For the scent-centric companies behind these specialty smells, the goal is to have it smell like anything but perfume. One company told the Wall St. Journal that they consider everything from cultural preferences to what’s nearby when creating that one-of-a-kind aroma for a property.

For more on what’s trending in Chicago real estate and what buyers are looking for, contact me at (312) 498-5080 or email me at

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *