Are You Sure Your Listing Is a "Colonial" Type of Home? You Better Get It Right!

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Compass, formerly RE/MAX WHP 0524642

Our MLS gives us the option to list our listings as one of several different ways: Colonial, Victorian, Traditional, Contemporary/Modern, English, French, Georgian, Mediterranean, Ranch, Spanish, Split-Level or other. Traditional is by far the most common type of classification on our MLS. It's very important for Sellers and Realtors to understand that if you classify a listing as something it is not that you could be selling something under false pretenses.

Just because your home has Spanish tile and delicious home made salsa in the fridge doesn't mean you can market your home as "Spanish-Built." Recently a local agent listed his brand new listing as "Mediterranean" and was later flagged by the MLS for a violation. Having a lot of vines and statues out front didn't classify this house as Mediterranean. I was joking about the salsa, but I'm not joking about what happened to this agent. He thought because the home had a Mediterranean "feel" that it could be listed as Mediterranean built. We can shake our heads about this later.

Spanish and Mediterranean homes are almost always built out of stucco or block exterior, not ACME brick manufactured in Houston. Block and stucco allow the interior of the home to stay cooler with less dependency of an air conditioner. You can usually find these types of homes along the coast of California as their climate is similar to that of Spain.

And to be perfectly honest, I have no idea what a Georgian home looks like. I grow tired of people classifying their listing as Victorian when it's not. List your home correctly! Can you imagine someone finding out that they don't own an English home after they close on it? And just because you have goats in the back in an unrestricted area doesn't mean you have a Ranch!



Posted by


Greg Nino
, Houston area Realtor®.
Helping residential buyers, sellers and tenants 7 days a week.
Available @ 832-298-8555 

RE/MAX Compass (Formerly RE/MAX WHP)




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Carla Muss-Jacobs, RETIRED
RETIRED / State License is Inactive - Portland, OR

I've seen tons of "like" homes . . . like it's a Mediterranean.  I suppose if someone really wants a true Spanish style home they could find a ton of them in . . . . . . Spain ;-)

Jun 18, 2013 06:30 AM #1
Liz Wallace
Century 21 Sherlock Homes - Rockville Centre, NY
Broker C21 Sherlock Homes, Rockville Centre, LI, N

I have seen Agents list a cape cod as an expanded ranch, really I'm looking at the picture and pretty sure I know a Cape when I see one.

Jun 18, 2013 06:59 AM #2
Janis Borgueta
Key Properties of the Hudson Valley - Newburgh, NY
LIC RE Salesperson

We have similar issues too. Seems that some names are even made up these days. Not very helpful either. 

Jun 18, 2013 07:42 AM #3
Steven Cook
No Longer Processing Mortgages. - Tacoma, WA

Greg -- if the MLS is going to give real estate agents grief over their choices of style -- perhaps the MLS should provide a list of characteristics of the various styles so everyone is on the same page.

Jun 18, 2013 05:07 PM #4
Doug Rogers
Bayou Properties - Alexandria, LA
Your Alexandria Louisiana Agent

Yet another reason why I limit my practice to mobile homes. Even I can figure out the difference between "double-wide and single-wide".

Jun 19, 2013 04:19 AM #5
Harry F. D'Elia
RentVest - Phoenix, AZ
Investor , Mentor, GRI, Radio, CIPS, REOs, ABR

This is so true. I think agents just pick one and move on to the next just to list the property.

Jun 20, 2013 12:16 AM #6
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Greg Nino

Houston, Texas
Providing Real Estate Advice 7 days a week!
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