While real estate is, literally, serious business (after all, buying a house is one of the biggest financial transactions many people will ever make), there’s also a lot of humor to be found in the process of buying or selling a house.
Real estate photography is a true art. As anyone who has ever tried to take decent photos can tell you, it’s actually pretty hard. Although sometimes one has to wonder if the person taking the photos actually has his or her eyes opened.
One of the best collection of photos online is Terrible Real Estate Photos, which combines bad pictures with witty captions. According to site creator Andy Donaldson, “This blog is … a tribute to real estate agents who take photos of their own thumbs by accident. To agents who don’t wait for your elderly relative to move out of shot. To agents around the world who, when presented with an unmade bed in a room littered with underwear think ‘that looks great.’ Click.” You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll make sure you hire an agent willing and able to take decent photos for your listing.
Realtor.com has a series of videos featuring celebrity spokesperson Elizabeth Banks that promise to explain the home buying process “in plain English.” The videos are both humorous and informative. The five part series covers everything from knowing what you can afford to house hunting to closing costs. The first episode in the series, titled “Knowing When You’re Ready,” features a man and a woman dressed identically going over important questions like, “Where do you want to live? What kind of house do you want? Why does he always leave his gym clothes hanging on the exercise bike? Why doesn’t she close her eyes when she kisses me?” Banks offers some sage advice: “Live within your budget. Also, don’t be an idiot. But those are really the same thing.”
Of course, if you are looking for real expert advice, look no further than The Onion. “America’s Finest News Source” has a series of pieces about the home buying process sponsored by Realtor.com. In “How To Know When You’re Ready To Buy A Home” signs to watch out for include, “Property ownership the only way to be viewed as bona fide adult without having children” and, “You’re tired of all your belongings getting wet when it rains.”
The Onion’s “Real Estate Terms To Know” include “Appraisal: Process of factoring a sewage-flooded basement into a home’s overall value,” and, “Balloon Mortgage: Not sure, but it sounds fun!” In “How To Begin The Search For Your Dream Home” buyers are encouraged to “Set up a meeting to speak with a mortgage banker. Even just asking about his day would mean a lot to him.”
Real estate agents are always looking for a niche market, and Sue Stanford finds one as The Ghost Realtor on Comedy Central’s Nathan For You.
The journey toward home ownership can be a stressful one. While the saying, “Laughter is the best medicine” may be cliche, there is certainly some truth to it. Whether chasing down documents for your mortgage lender or spending every weekend going from open house to open house, don’t forget that there are always plenty of reasons to laugh.