The Dos and Don’ts of Writing Real Estate Descriptions
Real estate agents have many versatile skills that they know how to apply accordingly when the situation calls for it. As an agent, knowing your numbers, how to work with people, and ultimately, how to close a deal, are crucial to the success of your business.
However, most agents have additional skills on top of this that they can leverage to increase their closing ratio. For instance, agents may possess web design skills, graphic design skills, digital marketing skills, and/or writing skills.
And, speaking of writing skills, real estate agents need to use theirs as best as they can in order to be able to solid descriptions for their listings. After all, taking your time to write a good description can help you get noticed that much faster. Likewise, writing a bad description can keep your listing on the market for many more days than it should be.
In order to create not just “good” descriptions, though — but, listings that actually get responses — there are some do’s and don’ts you can follow until you perfect it each and every time.
Keep it short, sweet, and to the point – When writing a real estate description, it’s important to keep your wording concise. If a potential client sees a novel in front of them, then they might get turned away quickly. On the other hand, if they see just a sentence or a few words, they might not bother. A paragraph should be enough to get your point across.
Put some personality into it – Whether you’re a real estate agent or an investor, you have probably seen a couple of crazy listings in your day. Listings that have given too much information or are, unfortunately, too desperate.
Usually, these are descriptions written by the sellers themselves, however, use those as an example of what to avoid. Don’t be afraid to be funny, adding something that might make the reader laugh or allow them to relate. It shows not only the home’s character but demonstrates what it might be like for them to work with you.
Add all essential information – Don’t leave anything important out of your description. You’ve probably already mentioned the number of bedrooms, the age of the home, etc. But, what about a yard? Are there updates in the house? Is there a brand new kitchen? They want to hear about it!
Add photos – There’s nothing worse than a listing that doesn’t have photos or has terrible photos. People are visual creatures, and no matter what, their eyes are going to go straight to the photos, first. Spend time taking attractive photos and if needed and use apps or a professional to help you make them as appealing as they can be.
Focus on the positives, but without neglecting the negatives – Let’s be honest. There are just some listings in which there’s nothing good to say about them. But, you’re clever. You know that you can twist your description to say something like, “Great investment opportunity” or “Good shell.” Utilize these phrases when necessary, but don’t waste anyone’s time, either.
All this considered, avoid saying words that potential clients might use against you when it comes time to put in an offer. For example, words and phrases like, “needs TLC” or “outdated.” Be honest, but not too straightforward.
Make grammar and spelling mistakes – It may not seem like such a big deal, but you don’t want to have any grammar and/or spelling mistakes on your descriptions. While it could just be a typo, too many of them show these potential clients that you don’t care to take the time to do something as small as proofreading. Read it over and/or put it through an editing software before posting it.
Make assumptions about your potential clients – While it may seem perfectly innocent to say something like, “This home as a large backyard where the kids can play” you’re assuming that all your potential clients have families. Overall, that’s not such a big deal, and most people won’t be offended by it. But, it’s better to be inclusive of everyone without making any generalizations.
Give too much information away – It’s important to say as much as you can about the property, so potential buyers know what they are getting into before calling you up for a showing. However, like the blurb on the back of a book cover, you don’t want to give away too much. Leave something to pique their interest. Of course, there’s a big difference between avoiding disclosing the obvious — for instance, something wrong with the house — and leaving something to the imagination — something to surprise the clients that they didn’t expect.
Repeat yourself – There’s nothing worse than reading a boring listing description, one that repeats the same thing over and over again. On most listing websites, and even your own website, you likely have a section where in bullet points, you can list the square footage, the number of rooms, the amenities, etc. These do not need to be repeated again in your listing description underneath. One time is enough!
And, speaking of repetition, get creative with your listing description adjectives! According to a comprehensive listing description analysis by Point2Agent, the most commonly used words in listing descriptions were:
- Hardwood floors
- Stainless-steel appliances
We’re not saying you can’t use these words. Instead, just be mindful of words that are used way too often, and grab a thesaurus to see if you can use something different.
Go overboard – Finally, whatever you do, do not go overboard on your descriptions. Ultimately, this means that you should hold back on any exaggerations. For instance, do not say that the kitchen is “phenomenal” if it is just “okay.” Readers can recognize exaggerations from the get-go, so it’s better to avoid them at all costs.
Do you have any additional tips for writing listing descriptions, or an example of a listing description that was very successful? Let us know in the comments below!