Real estate descriptions translated for the novice applicant
(Originally published June 12, 2019)
“Blessed is he who expects nothing, for he shall never be disappointed.”
- Alexander Pope
In very few areas of marketing are appearances more deceiving than real estate.
Like many of you, my husband and I have rented several places in and around Sydney over the years, which means we've attended dozens more inspections. Between us, I'm sure we could co-write a Stephen King novel with the things we've seen-and-can't-unsee, but eventually we've learned the hard lesson along the way that some things really are too good to be true.
Thankfully, real estate agents use a special code to warn the more discerning among us of a property's true characteristics.
To save you the trouble of deciphering all that slippery real estate jargon, I've taken the liberty of translating some of the better-known descriptions into plain English.
"LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION."
Really, the only thing worth mentioning about this property is where it's placed. Interestingly, a piece of footpath in Bondi Beach also fits this bold description, but that doesn't mean you want to live there.
*Only puts up locations shots*
Similar to above, your new apartment is about as aesthetically pleasing as a tent, but here's some pictures of the great outdoors to win you over.
"COSY APARTMENT, PERFECT FOR TWO"
You will probably need to dislocate your shoulders in order to turn around in the living room, and how about that New Year's resolution to lose 5 kilos, eh?
Okay, okay, we'll make it 2 kilos...
"CLOSE TO PUBLIC TRANSPORT."
There are probably a million bus stops in Sydney. Chances are your new apartment will be close to one of them. Just not the one you want.
The landlord decided to put in a new shelf. It's such a pretty shelf.
"THIS WON'T LAST LONG."
This tried and true approach invokes consumer psychology to bring about a mad rush of applicants: "Someone else will lose that 2 kilos before I will!".
"BACKYARD SWIMMING POOL."
Don't. Even. Go. There. Unless you're completely up to date on your malaria shots, and even then, proceed with caution and plenty of Aerogard.
"NEAT AND TIDY."
This property hasn't yet featured on Hoarders, but just be sure not to lean on the walls.
"FULL OF POTENTIAL."
Yet it just might take a fleet of demolition vehicles to uncover what exactly that 'potential' is...
"A RENOVATOR'S DREAM."
What can we say? Nightmares are dreams too.
"PERFECT FOR FIRST-HOME BUYER."
A nice way of saying that your new abode is perfect for anyone who hasn't lived long enough or earned enough money to complain about living in third world conditions.
Yes - a very, very rough gem. Probably a cubic zirconia.
"THERE'S NO PLACE LIKE HOME."
Yes, there really isn't. Stop looking for a new apartment and move back in with your parents while you still can.