Struggling to write real estate descriptions that sell? Chances are you’re using tired phrases that keep you from standing out—or making the right impression with prospects. Take note of these common real estate description clichés and why they could be costing you valuable inquiries.
It’s not enough to write attractive property descriptions. You want people to inquire! That’s why it’s worth knowing the most common real estate clichés; real estate words and adjectives used in listings—and why you should avoid them.
Are you using cliché home description words?
If you’re in the real estate industry, chances are you’ve read more than your fair share of real estate ads over the years. You’ve also probably noticed that most sound the same.
Why is that?
Property descriptions are written so carelessly that real estate listings tend to sound uniform.
Hardly any listing stands out. And if we’re being brutally honest: without photos, you could probably swap one condo out for another and no one would know the difference.
They use empty buzzwords or phrases that don’t mean anything to the reader.
Even worse, they use words that cause the prospective buyer to subconsciously form an inaccurate opinion of the property.
Both approaches could be getting in the way of conversions. So what are those real estate description clichés and why should you avoid them?
These common real estate description clichés (and generic adjectives) could be costing you inquiries!
Browse through real estate listings and you’re guaranteed to come across numerous ads that use the word “luxury” or “luxurious” in them.
You’ll find it to describe everything from the property itself (luxury condo, luxury urban dwelling) to the features or amenities on offer (luxurious modern kitchen, luxurious bathroom fixtures).
Luxury is defined as “a state of great comfort and extravagant living”. But the term is used so liberally these days—even on properties far from it. And guess what? Prospective buyers know that.
Unless you can be specific and show that something is truly luxurious, prospective buyers will take this adjective with a pinch of salt. So what can you do instead? Be descriptive. Explain and then leave it up to the reader to form his own conclusion. For example: you could say that a property has a luxurious bathroom. Or you could say that the bathroom has desirable features like a hammock bath, walk-in shower with AXOR showerhead, marble counter tops, and so on.
Like the previous term, “rare” has ironically become so common that it doesn’t mean what it used to mean either.
Unless the property or some aspect of the property is actually a once-in-a-blue-moon opportunity or feature – in other words it’s in low supply – then you probably want to find another adjective.
“Nestled in”, “private enclave”
Experience has taught prospective buyers that these terms often signal that a property is far away or in an otherwise hard-to-access location. It implies you’re going to need a private vehicle to get around. If you plan to use these descriptions in your real estate ad, just note that it may act as a deterrent or discourage prospects from the get-go unless relative seclusion is something they are truly after.
Other variants include “lush greenery” and “garden living” and this is a lazy way of describing a property’s actual state of greenery. If you’re going to write about the garden or natural green spaces, be specific. Are there mature or newly planted trees? What kind? How do they impact the view from key rooms? What about existing flower beds? Does the plot have a low-cost maintenance grass like Bermuda? Is there a roof garden? You get the idea.
Describing the architect or developer as “highly-regarded” and “experienced” might sound good on paper but what does it actually mean? Readers will be skeptical unless you add more information to actually qualify that statement. For example: Designed by the architects behind the landmark so-and-so building in downtown Hong Kong.
Think “cozy” sounds better than cramped, tight or snug? Think again because potential buyers know that when you say cozy, what you really mean is small. It might be wiser to just mention the actual floor area than describe a room or home as cozy.
“Fantastic”, “Charming”, “Wonderful”
These adjectives sound great but they don’t add much value to a description.
Are these terms useful to the reader? Do they convey helpful information? Do they help the potential buyer imagine life in this property? Let’s be honest: not really. Should you use them? Probably not. There’s so much more you could be writing about. There are so many other real estate advertising words that paint a clearer picture than filler words like these. So skip the empty platitudes and focus on what really matters to your potential client.
To conclude, there’s nothing inherently wrong with these real estate descriptive words. The problem lies in the fact that everyone is using them—so much so that some have lost all meaning or taken on entirely new (negative) meanings.
So if you find yourself using these terms in your property sales descriptions on a regular basis (like, in every listing), then then it’s time to go back and edit without mercy!
Don’t miss: Get more inquiries with these real estate copywriting tips
How do you write a good real estate description?
Avoiding real estate description clichés and writing a good real estate description isn’t enough. Let me say it again: you want a real estate description that sells!
Aside from steering clear of copywriting clichés, how do you write an ad that attracts the right people? And more importantly, how do you inspire them enough to schedule a visit? You need words that sell real estate. But you also need to go back to basics.
Know your property
You can’t write engaging copy if you don’t have all the details relating to the property you’re trying to sell.
Aside from the facts and figures, what makes this house or condo special? How do the current owners describe living here? If it’s brand new and never been lived in before, what are the future owners going to love?
Know your target buyer
Next, you need to define the ideal buyer. That’s how you’ll find the right words to (1) impress and (2) convince them to take action. That is, to read more and contact you.
What do they want in a property? What do they need? Are there any concerns you need to address? What might be on their wish list?
The more you understand your prospective buyer, the better the real estate copy you write.
Find the right balance
You don’t want a cookie-cutter description but you aren’t entering a creative writing competition either. Remember that there are particulars potential buyers need to know and then there are the details that bring a description to life!
When you get that right, you help the reader imagine living there. Your ad reflects the prospect’s aspirations. It makes a lasting impression and invites the reader to take action—now.
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