How to write an effective copy for Real Estate Ads

Print ad by Circle One for Reflections@Keppel Bay, Singapore

Writing clear copy in real estate ads is more important than ever. Often the first contact the real estate developer has with a potential home buyer comes through the advertisement. With the speed at which shoppers are able to jump from one listing to the next, especially online, it’s essential that your ads are written clearly and are engaging. And since the first contact you’ll likely have with a potential home buyer will come through this ad, the copy is your first chance to build a reputation and a relationship.

1. Write clear, catchy headlines
Describe the house factually, but add a sense of urgency so the property appears to be highly sought-after and desired. Nearly everyone will read your headline, while relatively few visitors will read the rest of the copy … unless you can capture their attention immediately, that is. A good rule of thumb is to spend half your time working on the headline.

2. Use the best visuals and renderings
The advertisement is the first impression tool for your potential customers. You need to include photos and 3D architectural renderings of the best possible quality to highlight your property. Use low quality photos or bad renderings will not only put your potential buyer off, but will also create a poor image in his mind of your company.

3. Cater to the local market
The more specific you can be about school districts, local parks and businesses, and cultural attractions, the more effective your copy will be. The specifics paint a clear picture of the house while at the same time showing your expertise and familiarity with the local market.

4. Proofread and avoid typos
Nothing can ruin a great headline like a typo in the body of the listing. If you have time, set the listing aside and work on another project so you can proofread with a fresh set of eyes. Even better, read the listing out loud. Not only will you catch typos, but your ear could help you identify a better word or phrase.

5. Highlight your contact information
One of the main goals of an ads is, after all, to schedule a showing. Make sure your phone number and email address are easy to find in the advertisement.

6. Include a call to action
When listing your phone number, don’t simply include the number, but add a call-to-action to entice visitors to take action, for example, To schedule an in-person showing this week, call Robert at 123-4567.

7. Make a sale with copy
If you can write ads that sell, your showings will be much more effective, since your new clients will be in love with the house before they even arrive to take their first walk-through. Ads that sell often include unique details about the house, a list of owner benefits, and something surprising enough to warrant a second look.

8. Be as creative as possible without being too clever
In a crowded market you need to stand out. This doesn’t mean you should throw caution to the wind, and deal in metaphors or inane comparisons. Show off the personality of the home and not your creative abilities. Most real estate developers, in the effort to stand out, resort to copy that ends up confusing the buyer. The buyer needs information and this information needs to be creative and straight to the point!!

9. Present a picture of living in the house
Many ads present facts about a physical house. If you can differentiate your ad by selling a lifestyle, you’ll be at a distinct advantage. Instead of saying a house has three bedrooms, mention that it has three bedrooms, perfect for children, office space or a workout room. Help people visualize themselves living in the house.

10. Make sure the photos match
It’s important that the ad doesn’t over promise or under promise on the house. Remember, this is the first contact you’re having with potential clients. You don’t want them to feel the copy is less than truthful. Instead, take this opportunity to show the house as honestly as possible, and point out the positives.

11. Be consistent with your copy
The tone of a listing, from headline to body copy, should be positive, engaging and professional. Further, if all your ads display that same level of professionalism and expertise, you’re likely to develop a good reputation among shoppers.