Charming sub-penthouse benefits from Juliet balcony

Whenever I read copy that’s trying to bamboozle me with jargon or hyperbole, I’m always very suspicious – all the more so if it comes from a business trying to sell me something.

So if you’re in business and you want to win the trust of your customers, remember to always use plain, simple language that anyone can understand.

To illustrate the point, I’ve compiled a brief guide to the language of estate agents, possibly the most mistrusted profession on the planet. I’ve lifted all the words and phrases I’ve translated direct from a property magazine – if you come across any examples not listed here, please do post them.

Well-presented – painted magnolia throughout. Stains on the walls covered up just about long enough to get the property sold/rented.

Truly well-presented – as above but with fake wooden flooring.

Furnished to a very high standard – kitted out wholly in Ikea.

Furnished to a good standard – was a good standard the year Kennedy was shot.

Ideal investment opportunity – no sane person would actually want to live in this dump.

No onward chain – buy-to-let investor is getting out of the market before the crash.

Juliet balcony – a window with an iron railing in front of it.

City-facing Juliet balcony – it’s not overlooking the river and you won’t get any sun but you’ll think you’re living in Manhattan.

Shared front garden – a bit of grass on the pavement outside.

Benefits from (as in ‘benefits from doors and windows’) – has.

Further complemented with – also has.

Comprises of – I’m too illiterate to know how to use the word ‘comprise’.

This apartment also benefits from excellent proximity to the local first-rate amenities – this flat is next door to the Costcutter.

Vibrant area – crawling with drug dealers.

Open-plan fitted kitchen – there is no kitchen. They’ve stuck it in your living room.

Sub-penthouse – er . . . not a penthouse.

The reception room is a unique curved space – none of your furniture will ever look right in this funny little room.

Wet room – a tiled cupboard in lieu of the bathroom that’s been converted into a second bedroom to add £150K onto the asking price.

Charming – small.

Ideal for City workers – overpriced and so soulless that it’s only suitable for those who enjoy spending 100 hours a week at work.

5 comments so far . . . come and pitch in!

  1. Albert Hall says:

    Excellent piece – irritating how you can find more meaningful information about a five pound CD than a 200,000 house. Can i add..

    – some furniture included (it’s a repo)
    – having front access (there is a door)
    – having front and rear access (there are two doors)
    – boasts (has)
    – unique (either one of only 1 million similar, or trapezoid in shape)
    – low maintenance rear garden (6 paving slabs bordered by broken fencing which is potentially not in a boundary dispute)
    – utility room having an open aspect to the rear (an unfinished ‘conservatory’ has been nailed ineptly to the back. there is no door on it.)
    – requiring selective modernisation (the previous occupant was a munitions tester, or Jackson Pollock)
    – open aspect to the side (kids take drugs on the lawn)
    – potential for a variety of uses (no floor, no roof, no planning permission, and no chance)

    …and an irritous miscellany of bugbears:
    Over-use of the word ‘Having’.
    An Early Viewing Is Esential To Avoid Dissapointment (sic).
    Capitalising Every Word.
    Capitalising on the fact that everyone needs somewhere to live.

  2. clare says:

    Thanks Albert – your additions are hilarious.

    I also get very worked up about overuse of the capital letter. See my previous post:

  3. Ms Baroque says:

    Albert Hall… Albert Hall… that name seems familiar, somehow… don’t you like round rooms?

  4. clare says:

    Good spot, Ms B.

    Albert, shouldn’t there be a ‘Royal’ before your name?

  5. Kevin Mills says:

    ‘Substantial’ – crippling maintenance costs.
    ‘Laid to lawn’ – some grass.
    ‘Hardstanding’ – some tarmac.
    ‘Outbuildings’ – check for evidence of dog fights.
    ‘No forward chain’ – check under the patio.

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