I had a pretty good response to my Top Ten: Over-Used Real Estate Buzz-Words the other day, so I thought I’d pick up where I left off.
The reality is, there are too many of these annoying catch-phrases or meaningless adjectives to list, but they sure allow me to fill my daily quota of cynicism…
Let’s just get right into it, shall we?
Similar to “prestigious,” or “dream home,” I find this term to be used in all the wrong places. Imagine yourself sitting in your cookie-cutter condominium that you purchased for $279,000 next to the Gardiner Expressway and saying aloud, “Aaaaaah……..now this is luxury!” Yeah, it sure is! When I walk into my tiny bathroom with a crooked, cheap, leaky bathtub, I think to myself, “This is how the King of England lives!” Most buildings aren’t luxurious, and shouldn’t be marketed as such…
Every condominium in the city has “amenities,” since this is really a synonym for “common area,” but most agents never actually see the amenities (such as the gym), and still say “great amenities” on the MLS listings. There is a difference between true “great amenities” such as the exceptional fitness facility at 270 Wellington Street with an abundance of brand-new equipment, and the lonely exercise bike from 1982 sitting in the corner of a basement room at 40 Homewood Ave. And who actually reads those old books in the “library” anyways?
8. Great Investment.
If it’s such a great investment, then why is the owner selling? Oh, I guess he’s just a nice guy, and wants to spread the love around and let somebody else have a turn owning the money-machine. Or maybe his arms are so tired from lugging those massive bags of cash to the bank every second Tuesday of the month that his physiotherapist told him to sell. If it’s such a “great investment,” I’ll find out for myself, thanks…
Okay this one isn’t so much an over-used term as it is something that should never, ever be used! I guess this house is being targeted by builders and speculators, but the listing agent is trying to convey that it works for end-users too. But why not say that differently? I mean, when I hear that a house is “liveable” at the very basic level, I just take that to mean that if I live in the house, I probably won’t die…
6. Like New.
So…….this house that was built just after World War II is “like new?” Like, really? Like, wow! It was renovated last year from top-to-bottom with all new kitchen and bathrooms, and the old carpet was taken out and replaced with hardwood floors. So, what we’re saying here is that this house is “renovated,” right? If it were “like new,” then it would be slightly less than new, which this house is not. This is a house that is sixty-years-old and was recently renovated…
(Referring to the area). Really? Just how exclusive is it, and what are the prerequisites? Is it exclusive to a certain race or religion? Because if so, that’s not really politically correct to advertise. Or is it exclusive to something ridiculous, such as people whose names start with the letter “Y”? The truth is, it’s not really exclusive at all, since these houses that are being called “exclusive” are actually sold all the time, and are advertised for sale on a public forum such as MLS…
Just put your hand on the pulse of this trendy, up-and-coming, neighborhood, and you’ll see how vibrantit truly is! What the heck does “vibrant” mean, anyways? There is always something going on? There is always a news-worthy story? An old man got mauled by dogs? Man, that area is sooooo vibrant! There are just too many happenings, coming-and-goings, and goings-on to count on one hand!
You mean “old,” don’t you? Oh, wait, you mean “old,” but in a classy sense? Kind of how that really ugly chair is considered an antique, and thus despite the fact that nobody on God’s green earth would ever want use it for seating, it’s actually worth lots of money? So, am I to believe that “traditional” is really a nice way of saying “out-of-date and un-renovated?” Okay, just checking…
2. Child-Friendly Street.
I’ve seen this term used on streets which are far, FAR from child friendly, such as Lawrence Avenue, for example. I’m sure the area of Lawrence Park is friendly, as are the streets behind Lawrence Ave, but how can you call a busy through-fare like Lawrence “child friendly?” And just what does “child friendly” actually mean—that no specific harm will come to your children?
1. Motivated Seller.
Talk about tipping your hand! Geez, if I didn’t read on the MLS listing that the seller was “highly-motivated,” then I surely would have offered more money since I’m such a poor negotiator! But I can’t help but wonder why this “motivated seller” has let his house sit on the market for 87 days with no price reduction…
Like I said, I could go on and on. In real estate, there are just far too many over-used or meaningless, descriptive words to list! I find it to be so cliche when people advertise on the MLS listing that the seller is “motivated.” What is the point? Am I any more likely to show this property to my clients?
Adjectives such as “hip” and “vibrant” really have no meaning to me anymore, since I’ve seen these words used for properties in exact opposite areas.
When I list a property on MLS, I try to come up with a description that actually sells the property itself.
Instead of wasting those precious, limited number of characters on the MLS form by saying something useless like, “Mmmmmm….smell the fresh-baked croissants from the local bakery as you stand on the porch in your bathrobe on a quaint Sunday morning,” I’d rather use the space to inform potential buyers that the floors are Brazilian cherry hardwood, the heating system was replaced in 2006, and the asbestos was removed in Spring, 2008.
As with all moronic catch-phrases, they should ultimately run their course. However, I say should because most lingo eventually goes in and out of style. But I’m afraid that many Realtors have no creativity, and no originality.
Just imagine if these annoying catch phrases were still accepted:
“It’s aaaall good.”
“Is that your final answer?”
“Word to your mother.”
“How YOU doin’?”