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How to Set Up Your Listing for Success

According to the National Association of Realtors most recent report on the profile of home buyers and sellers, for 44% of recent buyers, the first step they took in their home buying process was to look at properties online. Compare that to the 17% of buyers whose first step was to contact a real estate agent and the importance of optimizing your listing for buyers becomes evident. When it comes to the marketing and presentation of your listings, how can you make sure your listings are set up with the best chance of success? 

One simple way to make sure to put your best foot forward is to keep WWBT in mind — What Will Buyers Think? RealtyHive is here to help you break down exactly what this means. 


With pages like Please Hate These Things or Terrible Real Estate Agent Photos  always ready to put up the latest in questionable real estate photos, it’s a good idea to err on the side of caution. That same NAR report also states that 87% of buyers who used the internet at any time during their search found photos to be very useful. 

RealtyHive Rules: 

1. Don’t include people (or parts of people) in your listing photos. At best, it detracts from what’ you’re actually selling. At worst, someone’s feelings are going to get hurt. Either way, it’s a lose-lose situation 

 2. Be wary of having photos with animals. Animals can be a great way to achieve the right kind of virality, but only if animal looks safe, healthy, happy, and are not caught on camera doing their “business”.

3. Make sure to get photos of (almost) everything. There are some things to skip — root cellars probably won’t make the best photos, neither will a room filled with a creepy doll collection. That said, if your description boasts of a wine cellar or private theater, it’s important to show off those selling features. Don’t leave the audience hanging. If you choose to skip over a room, it’s likely a potential buyer will think there’s a good reason you don’t have photos of it. 

4. If the inside or outside truly are a disaster, show only the best parts, but make sure to have an accurate description of the property. It’s okay to have a fixer upper or a property that “needs some TLC”, but it’s not ok to set unrealistic expectations. 


If it looks like a barn and quacks like a barn, it’s gotta be a barn, right? Wrong! With the popularity of converted buildings being used for residences and the growing popularity of residences to be short-term rentals, it’s more important than ever to spell out a property’s use, even if it is abundantly clear when you are there in person. In fact, the Realtor report stated that 85% of buyers found detailed information about properties to be very useful. 

RealtyHive Rules: 

1. If your property is used as anything other than what it appears to be, it’s vital to spell it out in the description. Have a property that is more suited to be a rental than a primary residence? Focus on that in the description. Conversion properties are one thing, but if you can’t tell the property’s use by looking at it, it’s up to you to clarify in the description.

2. If it’s a residence, there should be information on the number of beds and baths. If it’s land, you should have a plus-or-minus idea of how much land is available. For commercial properties, knowing the square footage is essential. These might seem really obvious, but skipping this information prevents you from landing in search results and appearing in front of buyers. 

Additional Resources

Some properties have additional caveats or information that is required. While it makes perfect sense to not reveal everything about a property in your listing, some things should be shared upfront to avoid any wasted time or hassle on anyone’s part.

RealtyHive Rules:

1.  Things like zoning, restrictive covenants, easements, and homeowner’s associations should be discussed upfront as these can be deal breakers for the buyer. You don’t have to put these in your listing description, but if you have the ability to upload documents or attach additional information links, you can weed out those who aren’t interested. 

2  Certain properties require more information than others. If your property has a searchable address, you may not need to include a map. If your property is simple “Lot X” having a map will help those looking for specific characteristics in a property.

Have a property that you’re looking to get extra exposure on? Whether it’s a home, land, commercial building or more, RealtyHive can help you find the right buyer for any type of real estate with Marketing Matters and Time-Limited Events!

Basic Rules for Killer Listing Descriptions

As a real estate agent, you’re always looking to position your listings for the greatest chance of success. While there’s no silver bullet, one-size-fits-all solution to selling a property, it’s a fact that most property sales start with online searches. It follows, then, that creating your best chance to sell starts with having a solid plan for the listing basics. Here are a few of the basic rules for writing killer listing descriptions.

Basic Rule #1

STOP writing in ALL CAPS. You might think it draws attention and it does – the WRONG KIND. It makes your audience feel like they’re being yelled at and doesn’t help the searchability of your listings. 

Why this matters: Apart from being universally against web-norms, all caps are generally harder to read because we are less accustomed to reading them and there is no differentiation of line height. While it may be true that people slow down their reading speed to accomodate for all caps text, it is also largely true that they tend to skim over the text, thus lowering comprehension. Unless your MLS requires it, avoid having more than one or two phrases in Caps lock.

Basic Rule #2

Make sure your listing descriptions convey the most useful information. There’s no need to put “must see” or “call today for a showing” or worse, “won’t last long!” in your listing descriptions. At best these are unnecessary, at worst, they’re taking the place of useful information. On the flip side, if you have showing requirements  (must have 72 hours advance notice, must have proof of funds, etc) that should be added to the description. This isn’t the number one most important thing, but it does help to weed out the lookers and helps to set reasonable expectations for prospective buyers. 

Why this matters: Many MLS sites have character limits and by including these filler pieces of text, you’re cutting down on the amount of new and useful information you’re able to share. Also, nothing looks good about “won’t last long” on a listing that has been lingering on the market.

Basic Rule #3

Make sure your listing is reflective of the property and it’s uses — especially if there are many other competing listings in the area. Describing sunsets is great, but people are going to be interested in your listing versus it’s neighbor based on the features not the view because it’s essentially the same. Likewise, if a property looks and feels one way (like a residential property), but acts like another (zoned for short term rentals in a high traffic area) it’s important to bridge that gap with the listing description

Why this matters: Using the same listing description for someone’s dream home and someone’s investment property will lead to you hitting the wrong audience and sitting on the market. People may see a conversion project like a former church or a former train depot and might think it would only be suitable for commercial rental uses, but in fact both of these properties were sold as primary residences! The reverse is also true. A property may look like a residential home, but actually be an ideal property for someone looking to invest in short term rentals.

From optimizing your photos to learning how to write listing descriptions, marketing listing can be a challenge which is why finding the right tools for real estate marketing is crucial. RealtyHive makes it simple with a variety of programs meant to give you the exposure you need to sell. From Time-Limited events that create buyer competition with massive property marketing to marketing-only options, RealtyHive has the tools you need to globally create your best chance to sell.