While no-one is expecting your writing to be up to the standards of Miguel de Cervantes – or indeed Javier Marías – it’s worth focusing some attention on your property listings to make sure they read well and clearly communicate the features and characteristics of the property. And while there are no literary prizes (that we know of) for property descriptions, the increase in leads and ultimately sales will be reward enough for taking the time to choose your words wisely.
We’ve pulled together this step by step guide to help you pen the perfect property profile to attract the right attention.
1. Think before you write
Before you begin to write your description, take a moment to list out the key features of the property you are marketing.
Consider the type of buyer that is likely to be interested and look at the property through their eyes.
TIP: When writing your property profile, picture the buyer you’ve identified above and write to them. This will help your writing feel warmer and more engaging.
Through your buyer’s eyes, think about the things that make the property special, the bits that are easy to sell. Try to find at least three positives that help it stand out from others on the market. This could be the friendly neighbourhood, the distance to the beach, the original terracotta tiles in the kitchen, or the sun-drenched terrace.
2. Grab attention with your first sentence
As with all literary masterpieces, your first sentence is perhaps the most important. It must grab your readers’ attention. It has one job and one job alone: to make your audience want to read on.
Make sure you include at least one of the three positives you noted in step one, as well as any other key features that will help a potential buyer decide if it’s worth finding out more. Remember, you have around 40 words or less to attract attention before a reader decides whether to click ‘view’. Make it count.
Here are some examples of potentially successful opening sentences:
A recently refurbished, 3-bedroom property just 5 minutes’ walk from the beach
A character-filled 2-bedroom villa with stunning original features.
A spacious four-bedroom family home with a pool, in a friendly residential area.
TIP: Write clear sentences that expand on your points. Don’t be tempted to just write a list of features as an introduction.
3. Include key features early on
Once you’ve set the scene, it’s time to spell out the key features. The idea is to give the reader a quick, easy way to establish whether this is the property for them. Use short, snappy sentences or even expanded bullet points to list the features you feel will be the most appealing to your target buyer. These could be the number of bathrooms, parking arrangements, proximity to local amenities, size of garden, local schools or original features, depending on your audience.
TIP: Avoid jargon. Use simple, easy-to-digest language so the reader can skim the page effortlessly.
4. Now for the detail
Prospective buyers want details, so now is the time to provide as many as possible.
Structure your profile so your reader can easily find what they’re looking for. You might choose to concentrate on each room in turn, mentioning details like room size, aspect, built-in storage, potential use and any other interesting points. Finish off by discussing the outdoor space, the location and any points of interest in the local area.
Keep your reader’s interest by varying sentence lengths and words used. Start sentences with, “The property benefits from…” or, “The accommodation comprises…” or “The villa features…” to keep things interesting.
5. Use positive language throughout
It’s important to maintain a positive, upbeat tone throughout your listing in order to give your reader the best possible impression of the property.
While it’s vital to be honest in your listing, it can be beneficial to describe aspects of the house in an encouraging way. If the living area is small it could be described as ‘cosy’ for example, or a gravel garden with no plant-life could be described as ‘low maintenance’.
TIP: Try to avoid bland words like ‘nice’ or ‘great’, and instead use more descriptive alternatives like ‘charming’ or ‘tranquil’ – words that conjure up a feeling or pleasant image.
6. Finish with a call to action
When you come to the end of your listing, think about what you would like your reader to do next. You could use a friendly last sentence to encourage them to give you a call for more information, or to arrange a viewing.
Find out more about the factors all top rated property listings share.
7. Use your language skills
Finally, wherever possible, add full descriptions in as many languages as you can. This will improve the quality of your advert, which will help boost your enquiries.
TIP: Before publishing your listing, always take a few minutes to do one final proofread. A professional posting, written to generate quality leads, should always be grammatically correct and free of mistakes.