Deceptive property ad descriptions that disappoint

Unfortunately the idyllic country scenes do not deflect from the fact that this supposed country dream home may soon become your mountain nightmare.

Many purchasers report that they feel that real estate ads often exaggerate the features of properties for sale.

Yet agents frequently report that when it’s their turn to sell, many proud home owners just can’t help wanting to ‘oversell’ their property by insisting that every feature of their home is highlighted in every ad, or by describing their home as having ‘four bedrooms’ rather than ‘three bedrooms and a study’.

While artistic licence is commonly used in real estate ads, blatant use of said licence can, and will, work against your property.

So what does a real estate ad really need to achieve?

No matter how superlative the advertising language is, the day of reckoning comes when purchasers arrive and match up their expectations with the reality.

If the ad has done its job, purchasers will feel excited when they see the real thing.  If an ad overstates the features of the property, purchasers often feel deflated or even worse –  conned.

A real estate ad has done its initial job if makes people feel desire and curiosity – sufficient to make them  come and carry out an inspection.

Clearing out the largest room and taking a picture really close to the ground, does not a sprawling floorspace make.

Disappointed purchasers are unlikely to make offers.

A property ad is not there to inform prospective purchasers about every aspect of the property and often, too much information can actually make people decide not to inspect the property at all.

To the inexperienced, this seems an unlikely situation:   What? How could an ad that highlights the property’s desirability actually go against it in the long run?

Many home sellers don’t realise that potential purchasers may decide, without even seeing the house, that it does not suit them.

No matter –  if they’ve already made up their minds against their property and weren’t ever going to buy the property anyway, it’s just as well they didn’t waste everyone’s time on an inspection, right?

Actually, this is a short-sighted approach as, as many a real estate agent will vouch, very often a prospective buyer falls in love with a house on sight even though, outwardly, it didn’t meet all the criteria on their wish list, or it had a feature that they didn’t want.

Remember, most purchasers will compromise on some features; especially if the home meets their needs so well in a certain way that is special to them (eg. a large entertaining deck that flows off the living area), that they’re willing to overlook the glaring lack of something else they thought they needed (separate living/dining areas).

The openness of this living area is readily apparent, however, that openness might be diminished  should the new owner decide to put furniture in it.

When designing your advertising, it pays to keep sight of the fact that purchasers are frequently buying a lifestyle.

Rather than listing all the features of the property, it is more effective to evoke the kind of life they could be living if they became the new occupants of your property.

Work with your agent on this.  If they’ve got the experience behind them that you’d want in a real estate professional, their advice can be the difference between a house being a stale disappointment on the books to one that is snapped up because of realistic expectations.



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