Scanning the real estate ads, astute readers will notice a lot of the same phrases popping up. That’s not an accident. Like every good sales rep, real estate agents utilize certain words and phrases to make their sales pitch. Here’s what the terms could mean.
Cozy affixed to anything usually equates to small. Cozy living area, cozy bedrooms, cozy cottage; you get the idea. It means the house is tight on space.
Larger than it looks. See “cozy,” above.
Lots of potential often means the house needs lots of repair and updating. Bring your tools and your checkbook.
Fixer upper. First cousin to “lots of potential” and also known as the “handyman special.”
Easy access to shopping/schools/entertainment can be positive. If the home is close to these attractions, but still buffered by other homes, greenbelts or other insulating aspects, it is indeed a plus. What’s not a plus is having the metro rail system or a busy thoroughfare behind your back fence.
Light and bright can mean something positive like lots of windows and an open floor plan. It can also mean that the paint, tile and flooring are all neutral tans or white, with little to no contrasting colors to break it up.
Mature landscaping can mean stately trees. Or it could mean the landscape has deteriorated to a jungle.
Recently updated could mean the owner updated the kitchen in the last couple of years. Or it could be a flip house that has been dressed up to resell.
Move in ready. No one is living there. Why?
Motivated seller and priced to sell. The sellers need a quick sale, but why? They might be in a distressed situation such as a job loss. Or it could be a red flag about the house.
Starter home. Think small, with little in the way of upgrades.
Vintage. Meaning old. It’s not necessarily a bad thing, because older homes often have lots of architectural character. They also have old pipes, old wiring, old everything. You get the idea.
Waterfront and water view. Just adding the word “water” to describe location is eye catching, and that’s why real estate agents love it. But “water front” should mean the property is directly on the water. And what kind of water is it? Is it a lake, a pond, a creek or the ocean? Find out. “Water view” is a whole different term. Ever been in a hotel where you can see a slice of the ocean if you press against the balcony and lean forward?