Laura's Guide to Real Estate Speak

Laura's Guide to Real Estate Speak

Jason Loper
Jul 20, 2011

Whether you live in New York, Los Angeles, or some point in between, chances are you've been misled by a real estate ad. You get all excited by the glossy realtor speak and then, when you show up, you're devastated to discover that a fixer upper actually means a nearly condemned building …

Real estate agents sometimes have to use creative language to entice potential renters/buyers to look at some pretty crummy apartments. Hey, they're just trying to make a commission so there's nothing wrong with that, right? Still, it can be frustrating if you're the one visiting these hovels!

Copywriter and blogger Laura Belgray broke down some common real estate ad terms and their translations on her blog, Talking Shrimp. And, although she's talking about her own apartment hunt in New York, I think some of these phrases will be familiar no matter where you live.

For instance: "Urban oasis: No light. Low floor. All rooms face an air shaft, or look over a courtyard and have picturesque views of garbage cans and electric generators. Maybe a crackhead or two, for extra "urban" flavor. They promise to keep quiet and respect your oasis." Yeah, I know that I, for one, have fallen for that term.

Or how about: "Stairway to Heaven: No elevator. Duh. I saw one listing that had the chutzpah to advertise, "You'll burn calories and melt fat on the way up to your 5th floor paradise.""

Check out Laura's informative (and hilarious!) post: Luxury Crack Den Oasis! A Guide to Real Estate Speak.

Image: Flickr member cincyproject licensed for use by Creative Commons

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