Is anything ‘stunning’ when everything is?

These aren’t just mediocre little shacks for sale! Here’s how 15 homes highlighted in a local newspaper’s real estate section are described by the agents representing them:

  • stunning (five cases)
  • beautiful (two)
  • awesome
  • exceptional
  • exclusive
  • gleaming
  • gorgeous
  • take your breath away

Only two houses received a basic, no-frills description without lavish descriptors.

I get that the real estate agents need to talk up the attributes of the homes they sell. I understand that they probably write their descriptions in isolation. But don’t they realize their own gushing descriptions are going to be listed against similar descriptions from other realtors? If every house is stunning, gorgeous or exceptional, does any one of them stand out? Not really.

Graphic: digitalart and FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

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4 Comments

  1. Martha
    Posted November 23, 2012 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

    I think the most overused word in real estate ads is boast. This house boasts three bathrooms; this house boasts a wood burning fire place; this house boasts an ensuite. Why not “has” instead of boasts? All I can think of is that the agent or the sellers are full of hot air!

  2. Posted November 23, 2012 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

    Martha, you’re right, there’s a whole lot of boasting going on!

  3. Elizabeth Trew
    Posted November 30, 2012 at 6:01 pm | Permalink

    How about “4 bedroom house. Rarely available in Wanless Park area” when there are two other ads for 4 bedroom houses in Wanless Park” by the same realtor.

    Here’s another: 5 Bedroom, 4 Bath Home In Lawrence Park (the house is across the road from Lawrence Park)! Gourmet Kitchen! Stainless Steel Appliances! Main Floor Family Room! In-Ground Pool! Master Suite With Double Closets! Nanny Suite! etc! etc!

    Often parents buy a house because of the reputation of a local public school. However, some real estate agents would advertise a house “as near xyz” school, without finding whether the house is actually in the school district.

    A former school trustee told me she would get calls from angry parents who were told by their realtor that the house they bought is near xyz school. After trying to register their kids, they would find out they were in another school district altogether.

    They would have no recourse as the school district wasn’t named in the real estate agreement.

  4. Posted December 5, 2012 at 9:25 am | Permalink

    Elizabeth, there’s where you appreciate an agent with attention to detail — not the kind that needs an exclamation point, but that people are really interested in!

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