Crafting an Effective Property Description

When you became a real estate agent, you may not have realized how much writing you would be required to do. You’re not just writing contracts, but promotional materials, mailers, website copy, and more, including property descriptions. If every listing description feels like you’re reinventing the wheel, it’s time to create a systematic way of gathering information and putting it together to make this much-dreaded task a little easier.

property description matters

Why the property description matters

Have you seen those property descriptions with little to no information? Maybe they simply list the numbers of bedrooms and bathrooms and give the square footage. Maybe they just include generic content about the neighborhood or subdivision. Maybe you’ve written a property description like that yourself.

Property descriptions matter to both sellers and buyers. For sellers, there is a desire to see that you understand how special their property is and that you are doing your best to present it to the market effectively. For buyers, there is the desire to determine what makes the home special and whether it is worth their time to come and check it out for themselves.

 

two women talking by window

Questions to ask your sellers

Not sure what to write about? Ask your sellers. After all, they are the experts on the home and they know what makes it special—at least in their view. Create a questionnaire and ask your sellers the following questions as you prepare to write the property description:

  • What is your favorite room in the house and why?
  • How do you use the outdoor spaces?
  • What is the neighborhood like? What’s your favorite thing about the neighborhood?
  • Tell me about this location. What is your favorite thing about the area?
  • What first drew you to the house and made you want to buy it?

 

white kitchen with hardwood floors

Where to start? The Wow! Factor

Remember, the first line of the property description is meant to draw in the reader and make them want to learn more about the listing. Start with the most exciting element—the wow! factor for this home. This may include:

  • Its architectural style
  • Its location in a resort-style community
  • Its location near desirable local features
  • The fact that it has a pool or upgraded outdoor spaces
  • The fact that it has an unusually large lot size
  • The fact that it has been newly renovated or offers exceptional peace of mind through smart systems updates and upgrades

Refer to your sellers’ questionnaire to find out what their favorite element of the house is and what drew them to the home as buyers. That may be a great place to identify your wow! factor.

 

Out of ideas? Here are ten items you can write about in your property description.

Kitchen

This is an element that I include in every property description I write. People always want to know about the kitchen, whether or not they are gourmet chefs. Kitchens don’t have to be perfectly updated to be worthy of a mention. Does it have great cabinet space? A convenient passthrough to the living area? A window over the sink? Find something to highlight for buyers—after all, this is the heart of the home.

Owner’s Suite

Let buyers know where they can relax after a long day and don’t forget to mention features like closet space and en suite baths. Consider gender-neutral terms like owner’s suite instead of master bedroom, dual sink vanities or dual walk-in closets instead of his and hers.

large pool in backyard with grand staircaseOutdoor Spaces

Whether you live in a resort area with great weather year-round or in a colder climate with limited time outside, outdoor spaces matter. Paint a picture for the buyer of the kinds of activities that can take place in the home’s outdoor spaces:

  • Greenspace for playtime with children and pets
  • An open terrace for grilling, dining and entertaining al fresco
  • An enclosed, covered patio for a sheltered spot no matter the weather

Community Amenities

If the home is in a country-club-style community, be sure to mention the pools, tennis courts, golf courses, and other recreational facilities, along with common spaces, theaters, and cafes. If the home is outside of a specific subdivision, focus on the nearby playground, parks, schools or other neighborhood features that make it special.

Location

Is the home close to the area’s largest employer, cutting commute times and adding convenience? Is the home close to the waterfront or nearby hiking trails for outdoor recreation? Is the home close to the area’s best shopping, dining, and entertainment venues? Include a sentence or two emphasizing the location and its benefits.

iron staircase and white walls with moldingArchitectural and Design Details

Include the home’s architectural style and details like flooring, crown molding, and vaulted ceilings. Let potential buyers know what style they’ll find and give them an idea of the space configuration, including open-concept floorplan, downstairs walkout, or upstairs loft space.

Updates and Upgrades

Be sure and include any recent updates like newer appliances, systems, and other features. Don’t forget to include the outdoor spaces here as well—new landscaping features, upgraded hardscape, or exterior lighting can be great selling points.

Security Features

Does the community have special security features, like a manned entrance gate or 24-hour manager on site? Does the home have storm shutters or impact glass throughout? Mention upgraded security and how it contributes to peace of mind for the buyer.

white car parked in garageConvenience Features

Similarly, think about the elements of the home that are particularly convenient. This may include an oversized attached garage, a laundry room with built-in storage and wardrobe center, or walk-in closets with custom storage solutions. Anything that will make the homeowner’s life easier is worthy of inclusion.

Call to Action

Do you want to offer virtual tours as well as in-person? Are you planning an upcoming open house or broker’s open? Do you want to redirect viewers to a standalone site with a video tour? Don’t forget to include a call to action so that buyers know where they can find more information.

 

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Written by Christy Murdock Edgar

Christy Murdock Edgar is a seasoned real estate writer and frequent columnist for Inman. Her expertise in the realm of real estate has helped agents all over the world improve their content marketing strategies.