Vancouver Real Estate – Is Your Ink Sincere?


It was George Orwell who said that “the great enemy of clear language is insincerity. When there is a gap between one’s real and one’s declared aims, one turns as it were instinctively to long words and exhausted idioms, like a cuttlefish spurting out ink.”

Fall off A Wagon

When copy spurted out by Realtors® is reviewed, you wonder what trauma occurred when they fell off their heels.

It did not take long to browse through the local MLS® for examples of these “spurts” of ink.

“attached and detached …… garage for 8 cars and all the extra features including top of the line appliances”

Courtesy REBGV MLS

Syntax or Sincerity

What does “…….” mean? Seriously, would a cuttle fish know? This idiom is used by a number of Realtors® who I think, but am not sure, are trying to say that the home has spots.

Was a golden opportunity to describe extra features lost by not telling us that the home has a Drive-Thru kitchen where all appliances are included with the garage or was it just confused syntax?


“built by renowned architec and famous builder”

Courtesy REBGV MLS

Spell checkers and dictionaries abound, yet we are left to have our eyes burned by sinful spelling mistakes such as “architec”. Orwell may view this as an insincere effort on the Realtor’s® part suggesting that architect is too long a word?

Print Copy Costs Money

Many would acknowledge that print copy is expensive. One of the skills a Realtor® should have is the ability to craft words that offer sincere, accurate, definitive descriptions of property whose aim is to entice buyers to consider it’s purchase. No extra cost applies when commas, and syntax are used correctly. The sincerity of correct language is reflected in the value the message delivers. The lack of proper language use may also be a declaration of the service level being delivered.

What Value Are Words?

Viewing this from a more subtle level, language quality may also predispose a buyer to question the property’s worthiness. Surely the aim then is to find a better way to describe a home selling for eighteen million dollars.

I’m just saying!

Got a Vancouver Real Estate question? Always happy to answer it. Call or send me an email or twitter me @yattermatters.


About Larry Yatkowsky

Larry is a recognized real estate expert. A veteran professional, his experienced counsel leads Vancouverites in his west side community to place their trust in a man passionate about his work. Uncompromising ethics bring a balanced approach to realizing your real estate dreams.

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*Disclaimer: Statistics Courtesy REBGV. While believed to be accurate they are not guaranteed.
**Numbers provided may vary as they are dynamically posted by the REBGV.

Reader Comments:

mila Says:
August 28th, 2008 at 10:12 pm

What a lucky man you are to be able to use the English language with precision and accuracy.
The rest of us may have to learn to use it out of necessity and do to circumstances way out of our control. But just because we are not perfect at spelling, it does not make us less trustworthy, does it?

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