By Tara Nelson

My doctor recently confided in me that physicians have a golden rule when it comes to gettingan accurate estimate of how much alcohol their patients drink on a daily basis. They take whatever number of drinks you enter on the patient information form, then multiply it by a factor of three!

While comedic (if slightly troubling), this rule is not that dissimilar from how home buyers approach the art and science of translating home sale listing-speak into what they think is a more accurate understanding of the property’s characteristics and condition.

Just as property staging creates a somewhat contrived scenario buyers can imagine their own families taking part in, property listing descriptions have evolved into a sort of verbal staging exercise where sellers and agents may create an artificial‘scenario’ that belies the true state of the property. Fortunately for savvy sellers, there’s another parallel between physical and verbal home staging: it’s all about the edit.

Removing well-intentioned but counterproductive verbal clutter from your listing is simple, but not easy. It starts with understanding what buyers take away from your words vs. what you truly meant or intended to convey. Here, to start building that understanding, are four common areas of big-time disconnects between what sellers say and what buyers hear.

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What Sellers Say vs. What Buyers Hear

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