By Tom Davidson
At some point in your real estate career, you're going to need the ability to write inspiring real estate listing descriptions to sell properties fast. Sometimes, properties can practically sell themselves as long as they are priced right and promoted correctly, and the property listing description plainly conveys why it is the bargain of a lifetime. In order to do this, you need to use inspiring ad copy to motivate a buyer to action.
Even if you're not a natural writer, you can still make your real estate listing descriptions shine by following a simple formula:
Since you only have one shot to get a buyer to notice your ad in a split second, come up with a way to stand out from the crowd. Can you make a reader do a double take? Can you make your headline stick out?
Look at typical real estate ads and you will notice they tend to be similar and boring. How would you react if you read an ad, among 24 others, that's in capital letters and says, "ARE YOU KIDDING ME?? 12 Acres of Wooded Land for HOW MUCH?" If you were looking for raw land, would you click on it?
You must write headlines that look different to catch attention. Here are some tips to keep in mind when writing headlines:
- Short and Sweet: Try not to make your headline more than 5-7 words.
- Emotive: Use powerful, descriptive words to evoke a response. You can score your potential headlines with this analyzer to determine if they're using words that would grab the attention of the right readers.
- Try Several Drafts: Don't always settle on the first headline you write. Try to create seven different headlines—you'll probably find they improve as you begin to rewrite.
2. Opening Statement
The first part of your real estate listing description will be your opening sentence. Start off by getting right to the point. You readers should immediately know what this ad is all about. You can write something like this:
"You'll love this stunning three-story home located two blocks from McNally Elementary in Downtown Preston," or "Come see this pleasant Tudor home with an open kitchen plan and spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean."
These two opening statements answer what a reader often asks—"What am I looking at?"—and gives them a reason to continue reading.
3. Narrative Description of Features
In this section, you should do two things: First, list the property's primary features. Then, provide an inspiring and compelling description.
Primary features include the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, square footage, lot size, location, extras (pool, garden, fireplace, etc.), recent renovations (appliances, doors, floors, etc.) and unique characteristics (lakefront lot, scenic views, etc.).
Here are two examples to help you craft an inspiring and compelling description:
- Example No. 1: Typical Ad Copy
- Example No. 2: Better Ad Copy
The use of descriptive words may require using a thesaurus, but it's well worth the extra effort.
4. Special Promotion
If your goal is to sell your listing fast, a special promotion can give your readers an incentive to take action. Here are some examples:
- Offer a small discount from the sales price for a limited time.
- Offer partial or 100-percent of the buyer's closing costs for a limited time.
- Offer seller financing. This is always attractive, as banks require too many documents and questions.
- Offer either a lease purchase or rent-to-own.
These are just a few promotions you might include in your real estate listing descriptions. Feel free to be creative with incentives.
5. Call to Action
Conclude with a call to action (CTA) that tells your buyers how to act. There is nothing wrong with conveying a sense of urgency at the end of your real estate listing descriptions. Here are two examples:
- "This house is only available to the first buyer who acts NOW. Call xxx – xxxx."
- "Why are you still reading this? CALL NOW!"
Beyond the basic elements outlined above, two very important things to remember when writing real estate listing descriptions are, firstly, don't hype or oversell, as people will recognize when you're exaggerating. Also, never lie in your real estate ads.
Find more tips on how to host your open house and conduct a smooth real estate transaction.
Tom Davidson is the general manager of Real Estate Express, a national leader in online learning for pre-licensing, continuing education and professional development. Davidson has nearly 15 years in the real estate industry. From sales training and product development to growing the business, his multi-faceted background encompasses crucial functions to a successful career in the field.