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Decoding Real Estate Advertisements & Remarks

Updated: May 23, 2019

Real estate agents are known for stretching the truth in their advertising. For example, the phrase “partial city view” might be re-defined as, “You can see the top of the Grand Sierra Resort while standing on the bathtub in January after the neighbor’s leaves have dropped.” The industry refers to this as Puffing the Goods and it’s considered perfectly legal in Nevada, within reason. I’d like to say that I’ve never puffed a good but I’m sure I have at some point. People tell me I have a good sense of humor, perhaps you need one to enjoy a long career in real estate. With these factors in mind I would like to take a moment to clearly define (actually, poke-fun at from a local point of view) the advertising terms and phases we agents sometimes write.

Charming = This house is older than dirt and hasn’t been remodeled since the Nixon administration.

Needs TLC = Don’t even look at this house unless you’re related to a building contractor.

Handyman Special = Don’t even look at this house unless you ARE a building contractor. See also Fixer Upper.

Cozy = Perfect if you own nothing more than a futon, 3 pairs of underwear and a toothbrush. Often written as an adjective to describe housing in Mid-Town.

Park-Like Setting = You are going to make some landscaper very happy by funding his or her retirement.

Convenient Location = This house backs to McCarran Blvd, or Walmart, or Home Depot. Perhaps all three if it’s a very convenient location.

Gorgeous Inside = Yep, this is one ugly house.

Rustic = Expect some unfinished drywall and you’re likely to see a few animal heads attached to those walls. Carpet is optional but if it’s there, it’s brown. Also, you may need a 4WD to get up the driveway.

Canyon or Sunset Views = You are going to get blown right off this back porch. This house may be ideal if you own very heavy patio furniture and don’t plan on hosting backyard BBQ’s.

New Water Heater = A totally a featureless house. NOTHING sells a house like a shiny new water heater.

Motivated Seller = These sellers overpriced their home 4-6 months ago. They’re well-priced now but the remarks should say, Motivated Listing Agent.

Pride of Ownership = These sellers have managed to keep their original appliances and furnace working for over 30 years. A caution phrase considered particularly heinous when paired with Charming.

Skylights = Oh yah, they’re leaking.

Perfect Starter Home = Perfect for that 1st time buyer looking for 1,200 square feet and making $100,000+ per year, Uuugh!

Low Maintenance Yard = Two possible definitions, absolutely nothing will grow in this yard and/or this lot is so small you can hand a cup of coffee over the neighboring fence from the kitchen window.

Seller Will Consider All Reasonable Offers = This house is at least 10% overpriced and the seller will consider any full price, cash offer to be perfectly reasonable. See also Motivated Listing Agent

Won’t Last Long = I’ve got to admit that this statement may be completely truthful. However, if you see this ad in a home magazine and you find that the house is still for sale, not-so-much.

Well, there you go, please feel free to chime in with your own “decode”. This may have offended some of my thinner-skinned colleagues but I do hope the readers will get the joke. Life is short and I hope you’re having as much fun in your profession as I am in mine. Cheers!

Feel free to send me a note with any comments or questions:

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