MLS Exaggerations!

MLS Musings!

3 minute read

October 23, 2020

Seriously, this will be fun!

Unless you don’t like me.  Then it’s just more fuel for the fire.

Snide, cynical, condescending – all fair.

Hypocritical – not quite, but nice try.

Yes, there’s a fine line between “marketing” and “exaggerating,” and my critics will undoubtedly comb through the MLS archives looking for instances where I’ve overplayed my real estate hand.  But I don’t do anything like what I’m about to show you below…

This first one is my favourite, no doubt about it.

The word “rare” is used all the time on MLS.

But define “rare.”


What’s rare?

Like, being the only unit available for sale?


So how many units are currently available on MLS?

That’s a screen-shot, just so you know I’m not making this up.

So maybe this is “rare” like, aside from the 34 currently for sale, there haven’t previously been any opportunities?

That’s a screen-shot of the unavailable listings.

Suffice it to say, there’s nothing “rare” about this offering.



There’s absolutely no way to substantiate this:

Except to say that none of my clients have ever described this building as a “loft,” let alone “luxury.”



We could look at the “rarely offered” bit at the start of this, but we’ve been there, done that.

Instead, how about “best layout in the building?”

That’s a BIG claim!

So for those of you who are experts in floor plans, would you think this is the “best” layout in any building?

To each, their own, I’m sure.

But a 2-bedroom condo that has two bathrooms and neither are an ensuite is something I rarely see.

There’s also a brutal HVAC or pillar in the middle of the window in the smaller bedroom.

There’s also a long hallway, which I don’t like.

And the kitchen appliance-wall functions as both the living and dining room, which is tight.

And this is a micro-condo with two beds, and two baths jammed in.

But I suppose if the MLS listing is any indication, EVERY other unit in the building has a worse layout?



This one is just downright ballsy.

The word “unobstructed” is used a lot in real estate listings, and much of the time, there are obstructions!

But where in the WORLD would you be standing in order to get an “unobstructed” west view of the city and the lake?  Seriously, think about that…

Now I’m no oceanographer, but I’m pretty sure this is not the lake…

“Unobstructed.”  That’s what they said.

There are literally two-hundred buildings OBSTRUCTING any chance in hell of seeing the lake from the 14th floor of this condo…



Another fun one here with respect to views:

I’m no meteorologist, but that looks less like “clear and bright,” and more like “dark and stormy.”

I would also add that the “city view” only exists if you stand on the corner of the balcony, like the person who took this photo.  Facing straight-ahead, it’s more like a train-track view…



I mean, define “generous,” right?

Like on Halloween when we were kids, there was that one house where they gave out FULL size chocolate bars.

That was generous…

This one?  Not really “generous,” in my opinion…



I’m sure all of you have seen “spa-like” before in reference to bathrooms:

Just how over-used is this term?

What is spa-like anyways?

Is it this?

Or is that just simply every condo bathroom you’ve ever seen before, except this one has a cabinetry that’s water-stained, a sink that won’t drain (flat basin), and a gently-used hand towel?



I haven’t been to a spa in a long time…



Here’s a new idea: spa-like.

Wait, I’m getting deja-vu…

Yes, spa-like.



Well, at least this one has a tree on the shower-curtain.  Spas have trees, right?



The word “inspired” can be linked to just about any other word, and combined to be a complete load of BS.

I see this a lot in the marketing of food products, ie. those “Artisan Inspired” potato chips that are really just chips.

I saw a listing the other day that read “Frank Lloyd Wright inspired design.”  The house had very little, if any, elements of a Frank Lloyd Wright design, from what I could tell.  I felt as though these keywords were added for searchability, and if you asked the owner, he or she would know this is just another average house.

So what then do you make of this remark below:

Before I lambaste this description, I think it’s fair to note that they didn’t say which hotel they’re referring to.

It could be this one, for all we know…



Last, but not least, I want to end on a positive note with this one:

I have never heard the term “right-sizers” before.  Have you?

Did the agent make this up?

This might be an exaggeration of sorts, since I don’t know what’s “right” about this particular place, but I love the idea.  I love the ingenuity.  And whether you’ve heard this term, or not, a thousand times, it’s the first time I’ve heard it.  And with the lack of originality on MLS, this certainly got my attention.

Have a great weekend, everybody!

Written By David Fleming

David Fleming is the author of Toronto Realty Blog, founded in 2007. He combined his passion for writing and real estate to create a space for honest information and two-way communication in a complex and dynamic market. David is a licensed Broker and the Broker of Record for Bosley – Toronto Realty Group

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  1. hoob

    at 6:27 am

    I’ve heard of the term “right sizers/sizing” for at least 10-12 years.

    I recall it emerged (or I became aware of it) about the same time as terms like “aging in place” started having currency, and the niche/specialty/industry of the aging boomer housing market started to coallesce.

    1. Verbal Kint

      at 11:26 am

      The ‘bungaloft’ era.

  2. Nathan

    at 8:57 am

    This has probably been addressed before but I have always wondered… Why Do Real Estate Agents Start Every Word With A Capital Letter In The Home Description?

    1. David Fleming

      at 9:55 am

      @ Nathan

      TRREB Automatically Capitalizes Each And Ever Word In The MLS Remarks Section.

      I believe it’s called “title case.”

      1. Nathan

        at 11:09 am

        Wow, that is not the answer I was expecting.

        Thanks for the response David. Keep up the quality work!

      2. J

        at 2:40 pm

        I naively assumed title case was for titles.

  3. planner

    at 9:10 am

    In today’s Globe real estate section in houses sold referring to Burlington – “In this suburban enclave 20 minutes west of Toronto,”

    1. Izzy Bedibida

      at 9:47 am

      20 min west if driving 150 Km/hr on gardener at 3:00 am on a Sunday. So technically…it can be a valid claim 🙂

      1. Professional Shanker

        at 3:48 pm

        Most people I know like to subtract 10 mins from their own commute while adding 15 mins to everyone else’s.

        Bias is inherent and embedded in our fabric!

    2. Appraiser

      at 3:17 pm

      Burlington is at least 20 minutes west of Burlington.

  4. Izzy Bedibida

    at 9:45 am

    I would go with Ravine Lot as an over exaggeration. Saw many ravine lots where the backyard gently sloped to a drainage ditch.

  5. Daniel

    at 9:55 am

    David, I’m struggling to make sense of today’s photo selection.

    1. David Fleming

      at 9:58 am

      @ Daniel

      LOL. What would you have chosen for “exaggeration?”

      I was trying to find somebody with an “exaggerated” pose.

      Maybe Pinocchio, ie. lying/exaggerating, could have worked?

      I thought about a photo of a child telling a wild story or something.

      Then I just got tired and went with the exaggerated yoga pose. 🙂

  6. Marty

    at 10:07 am

    MY HOUSE will be giving out full size chocolate bars this year. Drop by if you like.

  7. David

    at 11:06 am

    Wow, that 2 bedroom condo is TINY! I hope that everything you own can fit into a closet, because there is no room for any type of storage.

    In the “big” bedroom, the bed kind of has to go vertically, which means that the person who sleeps near the window better not have to “go” during the middle of the night!

    I guess when you boil it down, realtors had their choice of these captions, or maybe one from the list below that are a bit more accurate:

    1. “Buy this so my clients can close on their property and I get my commission.”

    2. Buy now, interest rates are so low you can’t afford NOT to buy!

    3. You better buy now or you’ll have to wait until next week when another unit in this building comes on the market…

    4. Come live at the building where over 50% of the units are listed on short-term rental sites! You’ll have new neighbours every week!

    5. It’s been 2 years since this building had a special assessment and/or been involved in litigation.

  8. Mike D

    at 6:19 pm

    Reallly? Kettle. Pot.

    Incredible Investment Opportunity Steps From Yonge Street! A Truly Livable Space; This Generously-Proportioned 2-Bed, 1-Bath, 840 Sqft Unit With Oversized Bathroom Boasts A Spacious Living/Dining Area, & Big Picture Window Over The Kitchen Sink – Just Like The House You Grew Up In! Super-Sunny Interior & Great Exposure! Walk Score 99/100, Transit Score 100/100!**** EXTRAS **** Fridge, Stove, Dishwasher, Washer, Dryer, All Window Coverings, All Electric Light Fixtures – All Appliances In As-Is Condition. Amenities Incl: Outdoor Pool, Gym, Sauna, Concierge. (27276962)

    David j. Fleming.
    Broker of record.

    A tiny, old, weird layout condo you are selling is “just like the house you grew up in?”

    1. David Fleming

      at 7:54 pm

      @ Mike D

      Speaking of exaggerations, how come you’re now posting under a different handle? If you’re gonna troll, stand by it, man!

      This was a co-listing so I didn’t write that caption.

      However, I am guilty. This is an exaggeration, same as the rest. Although I’ve had many buyers who have on their proverbial wish-list, a window over the sink. It’s rare. Yes, “rare,” in condos.

      1. Sleepy

        at 10:06 pm

        Do you want to pick another of your listings? 😉

        1. David Fleming

          at 8:01 pm

          @ Sleepy

          Another new handle.

          Just stick with “R.”

      2. David

        at 10:50 pm

        Staging is nice. I’m glad they listened to you instead of keeping their dining table and grampa’s Lay-Z-Boy

  9. Appraiser

    at 2:10 pm

    Recent comments on the economy from Stephen Poloz:

    “The top part of the K has recovered well. Basically, that pertains to around 95 per cent or a little more of the economy,… The bottom part, where the damage is the greatest, it’s about five per cent or less of the economy,…pointing to industries such as retail, hospitality, and the airline sector that have suffered the most…

    Poloz said while there’s a possibility of long-term unemployment in those sectors, the other 95 per cent — that is, the upper-half of the K — will determine how the economy will behave.”

    Back on May 21, he had this to say:

    “We have to be able to manage the risks around those things, so I’m not going to dismiss” dire scenarios, Poloz said during a media roundtable, conducted online. “But, me personally, I do think on balance what I’m hearing, the flow that I’m hearing, is a little too dire, a little bit overblown.”

  10. Will Byal

    at 7:06 am

    OMG Who the Hell Cares?

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