REAL ESTATE: EMOTIONS vs. FACTS & FIGURES - Coastal Florida Real Estate


Real Estate Emotions vs The Data: Which is More Important?

Residential real estate transactions are made up of facts, figures and emotions.  Unlike commercial real estate where emotions play a very small role, in residential real estate emotions play an important role.

Richard Sites, Jupiter real estate agent


Since women buy homes and men sell homes, let’s drill down a little into how to take advantage of this.

Buying a Home

Buying a home for a family is an experience where the emotions of living there and providing shelter for the family come into play.  In commercial real estate, the main factor are the numbers, fact & figures pure and simple.

But buyers want to imagine themselves living in the home.  They don’t want to know the dimensions of the living room, they want to know how their furniture will fit into the space.

They don’t want to know the dimensions of the yard they want to imagine the kids playing outside.

They don’t want to know if the pool is 30′ x 15′, just is it big enough to enjoy and they want to imagine themselves sitting around it.

Since we all have 5 senses, addressing as many of them as possible helps cement the emotional bond between the buyer and the house.  That’s why sellers use aromatic candles, soft music and the smell of baking cookies or bread.

In fact, one very busy real estate agent here advertises strictly that his “famous cookies” will be served at open houses and his magazine ads show 2 chocolate chip cookies and nothing else.  He says he has sold nearly 1,000 houses and holds 2-3 open houses every weekend.  Do you think he would spend this much time and effort if it wasn’t working?

And conversely, why the smell of a cat or dog in a house can kill the sale.


There is a saying that cleanliness is next to godliness.  Don’t forget that a dirty house says a lot about the owner and a dirty house can turn off the emotional spigot.  And the condition of your garage says a lot about you to buyers whether you or your listing agents is standing there telling them some facts or figures about the garage.

The Take Away

If you are selling, try to appeal to as many senses as possible so you engage buyers on as many levels as possible. Remember the Miller Beer commercial, “Tastes Great, Less Filling”? The advertisers were trying to appeal to you on two different levels.

I have a friend who is a national sales trainer.  In one of his books, he has a chapter called, “Gold Medals and German Shepherds”.  The idea is that some people run fast for gold medals, others run even faster from German Shepherds.

Selling Your House

Recently, wrote a post called The Perfect Storm about the engineer who, (as a man would), tried to sell his house by giving all the facts and figures to buyers.  And boy he knew EVERY specification, EVERY number and data point.

And he insisted that his agent attend every showing just to repeat them all to buyers.

His home had been on the market nearly 2 years without selling.  How do you think the facts & figures technique was working?  (Update: He just listed with a new and different agent and raised the price 11%).

Some facts and figures are very important: age of the roof, age of the A/C, service records and warranties of appliances, HOA fees, etc.. But only the important figures are critical, buyers don’t care about the blizzard of numbers you can throw their way.

The Take Away

If you are selling provide only the facts and figures supporting the value proposition that your house is a good buy and a safe investment.

Remember: Hope is not an effective selling solution.

Richard Sites, Realtor