Fancy a nice relaxing bath? (Pic: Jonathan Ng)
Fancy a nice relaxing bath? (Pic: Jonathan Ng)

How to spot a real estate agent porkie

EVERY industry has its own special language that will leave outsiders scratching their heads.

The hunt for a new rental property has reacquainted me with the art of real estate descriptions in particular.

Spending weekends trawling through ads and visiting properties has given me a better grasp on what the more commonly used terms actually mean. The fruits of my decoding are as follows:

They say: Old-school charm

They mean: This cottage was built in 1912 and hasn't had a tradie in it since.

On the upside these properties are perfect for filming period dramas so you could make some money on the side renting it out to film directors.

They say: Compact

They mean: Small.

Fancy swinging cats? Well you'd better keep looking.

You won't be swinging a cat in this baby nor doing any wild yoga poses.

There is ample space to sit on a couch or lay on a bed.

Take it to gym if you need a larger range of movement than that and if you're slightly claustrophobic keep takeaway menus handy because the kitchen could be triggering.

They say: Close to amenities.

They mean: Shares its front yarn with a four-lane main road.

Personally I don't mind living on a main road - it generally does mean the house is conveniently located.

Traffic noise doesn't bother me and I don't have any children to worry about near busy roads.

So if you're a bit of precious petal make sure you check it out on a map before you commit to an inspection.

This Sydney hovel is definitely “perfect for students”. (Pic: Richard Dobson)
This Sydney hovel is definitely “perfect for students”. (Pic: Richard Dobson)

They say: Pet friendly

They mean: The home is pet friendly if your pet is a budgie, or maybe a Mexican walking fish but the fence is no higher than your knee cap so probably not suitable for dogs. Soz.

They say: Uniquely designed

They mean: We're pretty sure the architect was tripping when they drew up the plans for this one.

I'm actually a big fan of the "uniquely designed" numbers because when you start valuing practicality over a sky light directly above your bed you're officially boring.

You'll probably get pretty tired of having to walk through the toilet to get to the pantry but it is a good talking point with guests.

They say: Perfect for students

They mean: Do your worst.

The carpet is completely ruined and you can spill as many beer bongs as you want on it because we're not replacing it.

Hang up as many posters on the peeling walls as your heart desires because we're not painting it.

Don't worry if you house party gets out of hand and you fall through the floor, just pop a pot plant over it because let's face it we'll probably just demolish it when you leave.

They say: Great value

They mean: It's a bargain so don't ask too many questions.

Yes the blinds are falling down but what do you expect for $200 per week?

Just be grateful, please. House hunting is an arduous journey but hopefully this debrief will help you know what you're in for before you toddle along to an open house.

@jill_poulsen



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