By Peggy Blair

Ah, the summer market is on us, and while for many Canadians that means weekends at the cottage, for Realtors, it often means open houses.

As I get busier, I often get a little tired, so I chuckled at this new listing, which I’m sure would appeal to others who work long days: “Within waking distance to many amenities.” I hope there are a few coffee shops among them.



Speaking of coffee, this listing featured a back deck where you could “Enjoy your mourning coffee.” Seems a little sad to me.

If you’re the type to enjoy classical music when you’re feeling a little down, this could be the property for you with its “Deck in the Bach yard.”

And on that musical theme, I loved this new listing, described as “two minuets to the Parkdale Market.” I keep imagining Yul Brynner and Julie Andrews, for some reason, but I’m old.

In the “don’t-throw-the-baby-out-with-the-bathwater” blooper category, we had some recent listings that involved removing things the buyer might actually prefer would stick around. Like this one: “laminate floors threw out first and second floors.” Which could make them difficult to walk on.

Or this one: “Please allow notice for showings to allow removal of dog, furnace, A/c and appliances.” You’d think just removing the dog would be enough.

In this new listing, you’d need more than a fence to keep your clothes from taking a hike: “oversized master bedroom with walking closet.” Maybe the closet got in a snit after the laminate flooring threw out the rest of the house.

This new listing featured “no rare neighbours.” Which I guess could be an asset. Whereas the folks who visit this listing seemed pretty relaxed: “All owners have exclusive use to outside pool and amble visitor parking.”

When it comes to recreational properties, this listing might not appeal to many new buyers – featuring “your own private sandy bench front property” – but hey, at least you have a place to sit while you look at whatever your view is. Here’s one where you really don’t want to look at the water too closely: “You’ll enjoy the salt water poo.” (No, honestly: I won’t.)

Now this blooper made me smile: “You’ll be blown away by the high coiffure ceilings.” As did this one, with its “coiffured dining room.” I’m sure they’re immaculately groomed.

Sometimes sales reps spell phonetically, but we know exactly what they mean. As in this feature: a “Huge storage area will fit all your chachkies.” They must be the not-so-rare neighbours of tchotchkes.

On the other hand, I haven’t a clue what this means, but I do like the visuals: “attached double garage with 2 man doors.”

This listing made me laugh with its “amateur tree lined street.” God forbid it had professional trees. But this one cracked me up: “Lovely neighbourhood that families grow op in.” I mean, hey, it won’t be long until the new laws kick in. I’m thinking the family that grows pot together, stays together.

Art Ratelle is a sales representative with Coldwell Banker Momentum Realty in St. Catharines, Ont. He sent me this listing blooper and wondered why a buyer would want to destroy a newly renovated property: “Completely remodeled kitchen that will impress the most decimating buyer.” I agree: not sure why you’d want a new kitchen if you’re planning on taking a sledge hammer to it anyway.
Then there was this new listing that made me chuckle. It features a “spacious white kitchen w/ lots of cupboard space (incl panty cupboards)”. I guess I’m using mine wrong: I tend to keep my undies in the chest of drawers in the bedroom, although I can see how it could be convenient to have a replacement set nearby. Yeah, like I said, I’m getting old.

Painted floors must be popular: in this new listing, the seller offered to “paint and replace laminate flooring.” Now, I didn’t know you could paint laminate. Or paint walls with flooring for that matter, but here you go: “HOUSE HAS BEEN PAINTED WITH GLEAMING HARDWOOD FLOORS.”

Lisa Lansink, a broker with Colliers International in London, sent this blooper along: “All offers must contain a conditional clause for the seller to secure his spot in retirement home for 60 days.” She wondered what was going to happen to the poor seller when his 60 days was up. Back on the street, I guess, sitting on a sandy bench, looking at amateur trees. Could happen to any of us.

One of my Twitter pals passed along a real estate listing where the house featured an “extra big dick for entertaining your friends.” Which I think could be an enormous selling feature.

James Knowles with Re/Max Kamloops found another one with similar overtones: “Freshly painted & quick passion available.” No mention of the, ahem, amenities on that one, though.

But this blooper was my favourite this month and made me laugh right out loud: “Available for premature evacuation.” (Although as one of my friends said, “I think I’d settle for fresh paint.”)

This will be my last blooper column: I want to thank all of you who have sent me listing bloopers and typos, and for all your feedback as well. Whether negative or positive, it’s always been appreciated — I hope you had a good laugh along the way.

 

 

Peggy Blair is a sales representative with Royal LePage Team Realty in Ottawa. A former lawyer, she is the award-winning author of the Inspector Ramirez series published by Penguin Canada and Simon and Schuster Canada as well as internationally. Her most recent book, Umbrella Man, is now in bookstores.

15 COMMENTS

  1. Peggy
    As one of the old school Realtors (35 years and counting) I have seen a few bloopers along the way.
    Thanks so much for your hilarious efforts.
    Alan L.

  2. It looks like Jim nixed my submission…something to do with the “extra big dick” blooper.

    Brian Graves’ comment (likely from a non Realtor/a member of the public) kinda says it all. Whilst many of the bloopers are indeed mirth producers, they also are an indictment of the subject personal listing sales peoples’ lack of attention to detail. Listings are a window allowing the public to peer into the world of the listing peoples’ mindsets whilst dealing with consumers’ most important financial/emotional transactions of their lives. I, speaking as a former, but now retired, Realtor, would not deal with these unintentional funny folks. They are careless by nature; not a good trait to be known by.

    Sorry to be seen as raining on the party, but…I was never one to engage in group think.

    • I agree with you Brian. While these bloopers are always good for a nice laugh, they really demonstrate a problem that many don’t want to acknowledge. It’s one thing to send a listing to “the board” and let some stranger do the data entry, but whatever happens to “proof reading” ? The things I see on a daily basis are often rather astonishing. From a consumer point of view, frankly, I would not deal with an agent who displays that kind of carelessness. It’s sloppy and my thoughts are if an agent can’t take properly care of a few words strung together, why would I entrust him or her with my largest financial transaction ? I do broker load all my listings. This way it’s done right the first time.

      • Well, I didn’t want to be the one to say it, but I agree with both you and Brian, Sabine. This might be something for others to consider: I always immediately printed out a copy of my broker loaded listing, checked it for errors, and sent a copy special delivery (my secretary put it in a properly addressed envelope and delivered it on her way home or on her way to the office the next morning).

        There was my personal note attached – just a sticky note that said: “Please double check and let me know if you see anything needing changing.”

        A simple request that showed I was trying to do things right. Honest accidents happen, and can be adjusted.

        One thing that always bothered me on listings in the MLS system: we had always been taught to put the front lot measurement first as in: 50′ x 100′ not the other way around. At a lawyer seminar when I was first licenced the topic came up and the lawyer noted that if in an APS the frontage was 50′ and denoted as the length, instead, being the frontage, the agent could find himself paying for the extra 50′ in dollar value. Other lawyers disagree, saying what you “see” is what you bought, regardless of how identified
        on paper.

        When I sold another broker’s MLS listing and discovered an important error (I advised the agent), I put a copy of the listing with my buyer’s APS, circled the error and had the buyer initial it to acknowledge the error had been pointed out.

        eg. Error in taxes as frequently happens. Same thing, the agent can be required to pay the differential and sometimes the closing law office will simply deduct the error from commission paid.

        Carolyne L 🍁

        • Carolyne and Sabine:

          There are two kinds of Realtors, and ‘only’ two kinds, being, those who strive to get it right all of the time, and those who do not strive for anything other than one-after-the-other quick commissions. Terry Paranych (pre hearing decision) would fit the latter bill.

          The former Realtors (dare I say the minority) internally value their moral and professional worth in the world at large whilst the latter value only externally measured monetary targets. The latter thus measure success as an outwardly visible ego trip that never ends. As Freud would say, these egos are not governed by the super ego; they are just egotists; they are incapable of self-governance; they lack a super ego. Thus the need for rules and regulations and ethics’ demands. Egotists do not care how they get to the so-called top; they care only that they get there, and if regularly taking a little extra quiet, solitary time to get listings worded correctly/accurately takes dollar-time away from selling via exercising mercenary attempts at establishing quick, artificial, superficial rapport to ultimately get signatures on the bottom line, then they give themselves away as false profits of professionalism. Ergo the over-all public disdain for our so-called “profession” remains well entrenched.

          The former described Realtors need no more descriptive superlatives other than that they are professionals by nature and are thus not primarily motivated by observed monetary status amongst their peers or within the world at large. They have well developed super egos; they are mature; they are to be trusted, and there are not nearly enough of them within the ranks of licensed real estate sales people.

          Good on you both for going against the grain of comments regarding this sorry example of how many respondents to this story think that ‘funny’ mistakes on listings make them any less unprofessional by nature. Humour does have a way of clouding issues, but only for the less-than-circumspect amongst us.

          Full disclosure: I made plenty of grammatical mistakes during the early months whilst commenting on this site due to rushed submissions, but, I always caught them quickly after reading them online and asked Jim-the-editor-guy to make corrections on my behalf, which Jim graciously did for me. After Jim told me that he could no longer accommodate my requests for corrections due to the new system not allowing for same, I was forced to work doggedly at getting it right prior to submission herein, not because there would be anything of monetary value in it for me, but because my name was/is attached to everything that I put out herein, and that meant/means something to me. It is too bad for the industry as a whole that it doesn’t mean that much to the amateurs…so long as the money keeps flowing in.

          Jim: Thanks for making me pull up my own socks regarding getting it right the first time. My penalty for getting it wrong is simply not looking professional online. Realtors seemingly do not have many penalties to be paid for much of their amateur-hour behaviors. Too bad…for the entire industry’s reputation, not to mention the individual reputations of the actual professionals who have to prove, over and over again, that they are not like all the rest of the slackers.

          And now, a little humour…

          Sister Mona Lisa was driving Mother Superior Mary to the market in their !949 Chevy sedan when a crazed-looking man jumped onto the hood of the car whilst they were stopped at a red light. The man grabbed onto the windshield wipers and glared at the women through the windshield.
          “Mother Superior, what should I do?” yelled Sister Mona Lisa.
          “Tell him to get off the car.” advised Mother Superior.
          Sister Mona Lisa dutifully rolled down the driver’s window, poked her head out and asked “Sir, would you please get down off of our car?”
          The man growled and showed his uneven teeth to the women through the glass.
          “Mother Superior, it’s the devil, it’s the devil! What should I do?” yelled Sister Mona Lisa.
          “Quick, show him your cross!” yelled Mother Superior.
          Sister Mona Lisa again dutifully rolled down the window, calmly stuck her head out, glared at the nutcase, and yelled…”Get the F—K off the F—-‘IN hood asshole!”

          Whoops…did I make a grammatical mistake?

          Jim…help me out man!

  3. i just read a listing that states…”.it takes just over an hour to get home” How does the agent know where i work?

  4. Thanks Peggy. I nearly fell off my chair laughing.:) . Thank you for sharing. Have a wonderful weekend!

  5. Thanks, Peggy! Howling with laughter till I had tears in my eyes and my nose is running. Love your commentary!

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