I’ve got a real doozie here today, folks!
Maybe this isn’t the worst listing I’ve ever seen, but it’s close.
I mean, how can we really bestow that honour upon any one listing?
The subjectivity alone opens the door for endless debate, and after sixteen years in this business, it would almost be unfair to knight one listing with the “worst ever” tag.
I will say, however, that this is, without a doubt, the worst listing I have seen in years.
And that’s saying a lot, since I have a monthly feature called “MLS Musings” that sheds light on the awful practices that are so prevalent in the Toronto real estate industry.
But as you’ll see below, this is brutal.
Let’s not waste any more time here, let’s get right into it.
Below is the listing with the items I want to draw your attention to boxed in red, with a corresponding blue number beside them so I can make explanations below.
Have a look:
(click to enlarge)
I thought about playing a “game” and providing a copy of the listing without my notes, and then letting you try to find the mistakes. We all played enough of those “Spot the Differences!” puzzles when we were kids.
But to make this exercise fun simply undermines how serious a matter this is.
Some of you may find this amusing, but I’m insulted as a colleague of the moron who listed this property.
Let’s go through the issues/mistakes one at a time…
These photos do not fit the MLS parameters.
This is not unusual, of course. Many agents use photos that are vertical instead of horizontal, and that’s even worse. But that white gap at the top shows that this agent didn’t size his or her photos, and since I expect perfection, this is a flaw.
2) Missing Unit Number
This is insane.
Absolutely, positively, inexcusable.
Imagine if you lived at 128 Parkhurst Boulevard, and your agent listed your house simply as “Parkhurst Boulevard.”
How in the WORLD can an agent miss something as integral as the goddam unit number?
So what do people say when they’re calling the listing brokerage to inquire, or to book a showing?
3) The Price
This isn’t up for debate, folks. I’m not here to discuss the current temperature of the market.
I’ll let the last three sales of this unit do that for me:
So this unit, in January of 2020, is worth…………..$825,000? $850,000? Maybe if it were cleaned, painted, staged, marketed, listed exceptionally well (none of which happened, of course), it could sell for 12% more than the same unit only ten months ago?
Well, we know what it’s not worth. It’s not worth $1,050,000.
The taxes are not $0.
This is inexcusable.
In fact, it’s against TREB rules to put $0 for taxes.
This is one of a few exceptionally lazy displays of behaviour by this agent. All you have to do is ask your client, or, look it up online. It’s easy.
See “1 of 6” photos.
MLS allows you twenty. Any agent who doesn’t use the allotted space for 20 photos is not doing their job.
6) Property Management
This is incorrect.
The listing agent only listed one seller on the listing, when in fact, there are two on title.
It is not binding for one of two owners to sign an Agreement of Purchase & Sale, unless that person has a power of attorney, which would need to be noted in the listing.
Let’s call this what it is: laziness, inexperience, and indifference.
There are not two kitchens in this condo.
How does one even make this mistake?
This unit is vacant.
So then how is it so difficult to do anything correctly with this listing?
10) Status Certificate
The agent has not ordered the Status Certificate yet.
I order the Status for every single one of my listings, two weeks in advance, so I have it for the listing. Not only can I use it to help market the property, ie. showing that the building is in exceptional shape, but it also speeds up the process by allowing for shorter conditional periods, or often, unconditional offers.
The Status costs $125.
Most agents won’t order it in advance because they want to ensure they sell the property first. Pathetic.
11) Assessment Roll Number
This is mandatory on MLS. You must provide either the PIN or ARN.
I have no idea how this listing got on MLS.
The PIN or ARN links the property to Geowarehouse and Public Records, which again, are tools that can be used to market the property.
12) Maintenance Fees.
The maintenance fees are not $0.
This is inexcusable. Just like the taxes.
13) Square Footage
This is, as Sheryl Crow says, “my favourite mistake.
Because this condo is 889 square feet.
With properties selling between $900 – $1,000 per square foot, the listing agent has short-changed his seller by a hundred-grand!
Oh, wait, it’s $200,000 over-priced, so…
I can guarantee the one source, on planet earth, that this square footage did NOT come from is the seller!
“Seller” is what a lazy agent puts on MLS when he or she has zero source for the square footage. It shouldn’t be allowed. Only “MPAC” or “Floor Plan” should be permitted.
Why bother, right?
It would have taken three minutes, and who has that kind of time?
16) Brokerage Remarks
This is where essential information about the listing is provided to buyer agents.
As you can see, nothing is provided…
As for the “Remarks” section, I have underlined my favourite parts:
“Amazing Unit In A Newer Building.” That’s what you say when you have nothing to say. “Newer” is ridiculous. This isn’t marketing.
“Bright.” Really? Check out the view, as I beg to differ:
“Ontario Lake View From Living Room.” Again, I encourage you to look at the above photo.
“Master Bed Room And 2nd Bedroom.” Sure. But are we just pointing out things in the unit now? “Fridge And Stove.” Or “Floor And Ceiling.”
Then come the photos, oh boy…
I like this one, which shows us that the listing agent has a nice lens on his camera:
Then there’s this one, where he’s decided to crouch down and get his head 90% out of the frame:
Then again, he could have been down there puking in the toilet, since the lid and seat are up.
Honestly, folks, this makes me so goddam angry.
It’s not entirely because I take pride in what I do.
It’s also because I can’t believe this listing is allowed on MLS. There are multiple infractions here, but does it really need to come to that? Where’s the common sense? Where’s the professionalism?
I know that if somebody emails firstname.lastname@example.org, and says that there are no taxes noted on the listing, then TREB will fax a notice to the listing brokerage, requesting the listing brokerage to update the listing within 48 hours. But, again, does it really need to come to that?
Maybe I’m inviting a grey area here, but if somebody at TREB sees this listing, even without the “$0” for taxes, they should enact a judgment call and simply tell the listing agent to get this crap off MLS.
Find me a worse listing out there, and I’ll treat you to whatever vegan-meat-bean-burger Tim Horton’s will be adding to their menu next month, then promptly removing.Back To Top Back To Comments