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6 Steps to Creating Property Listing Descriptions that Sell

Too often agents upload photos to the MLS or their featured listings, quickly jot down a few sentences about the property and that’s about it.

Using high quality listing photos is important but a well-written, detailed listing description is what you need to win that first impression and encourage buyers to hit the contact button. Here are 6 steps to creating descriptions that will separate your listings from the rest.

#1: Set the scene, tell a story.

How many times have you read a listing title that read “excellent view” or “great amenities”? The answer is likely hundreds, if not thousands of times. Describing your property with generic, worn out phrases will not get you the attention you want.

  • Instead of focusing on adjectives to describe your properties, set the scene for your readers, as if you’re touring them in person:
  • Let them imagine themselves sitting in that reading nook overlooking a calm view of the lake. Let them visualize doing family barbecue nights in that outdoor dining area.
  • As they say, “Don’t just tell them what they are about to eat; tell them what it tastes like.” Your listing descriptions will stand out if you can paint a picture for them with your words rather than plain bullet points of how many rooms or square feet the property has.

#2: Avoid repetitive info and using canned text.

One of the biggest mistakes that we see for listing descriptions is repetitive information. It’s likely that your MLS already lists the number of bedrooms and bathrooms as bullet points in the features list. If so, why take up precious character count to restate the obvious in the description section?

  • Think about what you would point out if you were showing the house to them. Some of the points to mention in the listing descriptions include things like:
  • The history of the house or neighborhood
  • Any recent additions or renovations
  • Proximity to schools and parks
  • Nearby shopping centers and restaurants

#3: Highlight Best Features

Surveys show that homebuyers are willing to pay more for properties that have made big improvements to the function of the house like roofing, updated entryways, and HVAC systems.

  • You want to hit those points and also highlight the property’s best features. Is there a home office, landscaped garden or walk in closets? Is there a newly built in-ground pool?
  • Put yourself in the buyer’s shoes and consider what about that property would be most attractive and highlight that feature in your listing description.

#4: Mention Practical Amenities

A previous report from the National Association of Home Builders says that more than 90% of homebuyers are looking for homes with a laundry room and more than half would turn down a home without one.

  • Other important amenities that should be mentioned in your description are things like:
  • Newly installed exhaust systems
  • Built-in kitchen appliances
  • Energy efficient windows
  • Security systems
  • Multiple car garage
  • Detached storage sheds
  • Solar panel systems and more

#5: Use Specific Wording

One study conducted back in the early 2000s found that certain words can even reduce the sale price on a home. They were mostly words like “must sell”, “vacant” or “clean.”

These word choices might imply some sort of deficiency about the home and can turn buyers off, even if subconsciously. Listing descriptions that sell include words like:

  • energy efficient
  • granite,
  • state-of-the-art
  • gourmet

The takeaway point here is that buyers want to be able to picture what you are describing when they read your descriptions. Even using specific brand names to describe appliances or fixtures will tell them the quality of those items better than using descriptors like “top quality” or “wonderful.”

#6: Captivate with Headlines

Finally we come full circle to the headline titles. Those browsing your listings go from image to headlines to descriptions.

  • Your goal is to get users to look at your headline and main photo, browse the rest of the photos and continue on to read your listing descriptions.
  • That means you need to say something that will make it hard for them to resist clicking on the link for more detail.
  • Some would think that it means changing the font to make the headline more dramatic with capitalization or exclamation points. No. What you want to do is show visitors why they need to click further.
  • Including geo-targeting / location words is one way of doing it:
  • For a home in the city with limited parking, the headline could read something like:
    “Beautiful Home with Private Parking in Downtown San Francisco”
  • If the property is on the waterfront, the headline could be something like:
    “Best View of Lake Muskoka from 5-Bedroom Luxury Cottage”

Are you using property listing descriptions that sell?

Did you read this and think you have a lot of work to do to your listings? Share your ideas on our Facebook page!

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