Your listing description is your first chance to attract and engage with potential buyers. Typically, it includes the address of the property, the list price, and a short summary of features. This is pretty standard stuff, but sticking to the basics is nowhere near enough to stand out from a crowded marketplace full of other listings.
When drafting a new listing, many realtors are guilty of being too generic. While photos and pricing might grab a buyer’s attention, well-crafted listing descriptions provide the context, highlighting a home’s details and finishes that may not be visible in photos.
So, where do you start? Aside from touring the property, a good place to start is by asking the home owners what exactly it is they love about their property. Ask them to write a letter to their prospective buyers describing what they love about the home and reference this while writing your listing. This will help you to gain insight on what truly makes this home unique.
Be sure to also consider these factors to improve your listing appeal:
Use Compelling Headlines
If your potential customers are on the market for a new home, it’s likely that they’re reading multiple listings a day. To save time, they probably read the first few lines and skim through the rest of the content. They want to get the facts quickly so that they can move on if the listing doesn’t have what they’re looking for. That’s why it is imperative to tell them what they want to know from the beginning.
Headlines should be concise, specific, direct and create a sense of urgency. For example:
- Stunning Classic
- Magnificent Mediterranean
- Prestigious Location
- Finest Street in (name of neighbourhood)
- Entertainer’s Delight
- Charming Cottage
- Sparkling Pool and Private Spa
- Beautiful Bungalow
- Fabulous Water Views
- On the Ocean
- Secret Gardens
Set the Scene & Tell a Story
Rather than just simply listing all the home’s features, create a narrative that weaves the features throughout so buyers can envision living there. Each and every home has something that makes it unique that isn’t visible in photos. Remember that you’re not just selling a home, you’re selling a lifestyle. A new street, a new neighbourhood, a new city, island, or sometimes even a new country.
Listing descriptions with a narrative context are more reader-friendly and help buyers imagine living there. For example, the descriptor “open space” is a concept most people understand because they can visualize how the kitchen opens up to the living room.
Write your descriptions with a focus on convenience and lifestyle, which appeals to online buyers. Include details such as the proximity to beaches and parks, which may appeal to outdoorsy types; and open floor plans and updated kitchens for buyers who enjoy entertaining.
Describe the Upgrades
Be sure to mention home upgrades and renovations in your descriptions, No matter how old the home is, buyers want to know if the AC was recently replaced or if impact windows were added.
When describing renovations, it’s a good idea to use the term “newer” rather than “new” to avoid confusing buyers. When you describe flooring as new, people tend to think it was replaced last week. If it was replaced two years ago, it’s no longer brand new. Showcase the home honestly and don’t exaggerate or understate a home’s features or you may undermine the buyers’ trust in you—and the value of the house.
Choose the Right Words
While some words may help sell your listing faster and for a higher price, other terms can have the opposite effect. Did you say “small” or “tiny?” Your home or condo might be cozy, but it is not small. Unless it’s a true tiny home, designed and built that way, don’t use this word. Cross “cramped” off your list as well. A home might be comfortable, but it’s never cramped. Cramped can’t usually be fixed, at least not without boatloads of money poured into renovations additions.
“Outdated” is bad. It implies that a lot of work will be necessary to make it livable.
“Original vintage” is much better. Vintage homes in pristine condition are sought after.
Overused words like “luxury” and “beautiful” are subjective and can mean different things to different people. Instead, show what luxury means. For example, describing the marble countertop that was imported from Italy implies luxury without stating it.
Add High-Quality Photos
High-quality photos and can complement the home’s story. It’s usually a good idea to hire a professional photographer. Take a minimum of 5 photos and display them in order of the home’s layout, starting with the front exterior and and proceeding through the common areas and bedrooms.
Another option is to showcase the home’s best features in the first few photos, especially if those features are extraordinary, such as a refurbished staircase or a designer kitchen with top-of-the-line appliances. Once you’ve hooked buyers’ interest, the remaining images can highlight more mundane features, like extra bedrooms.
For increased salability in a competitive marketplace, listing descriptions with the right keywords and imagery can help tell a home’s story that captures a buyer’s interest.
Are you using property listings that sell? Using your listing to tell the unique and compelling story of each home can entice interested and serious buyers into viewing it. A good description doesn’t need to lie or exaggerate. Your words should paint a vivid portrait of what it would feel like to live there. Remember, you’re not selling a house, you’re selling a lifestyle.