How Language Affects Your Apartment Shopping Experience

Three friends, stylishly dressed, having conversation on outdoor apartment balconyLanguage is a funny thing. As you look across the country, you can find a variety of ways to say the same exact thing. For instance, the sparkling, sugary drink we all love so much is called “pop” in the Midwest,  “soda” in the Northeast, and simply “Coke” in the South. What you call a “sub,” I might call a “grinder.” And, while kids on a playground in your town might be catching “doodlebugs,” they’re catching “roly-polys” (or “pill bugs”) in my neck of the woods.

The same thing often happens when you search for an apartment. Some words are more effective than others at communicating what you are looking for. And the language you use may not be the same that apartments use to attract new renters.

Here is a look at how language affects your apartment shopping experience:

  • Complex vs Community: When you are seeking a new apartment home, you are looking to become part of a larger group. You are among many others seeking a life in the same multifamily environment. This makes you part of a “community,” not a complex.
  • Description vs Reality: Some communities fill their advertising with a whole host of different terms that must be analyzed by apartment shoppers. Phrases such as “state of the art fitness center,” “sparkling, resort-style pools,” and “apartment with a view,” while commonly used, can mean totally different things from one apartment community to the next. It is important to dig a little further to make sure that your expectations are being successfully met. Watch out for these four danger signs when touring an apartment to make sure the apartment’s description matches reality.
  • The Indoors vs the Outdoors: Even something as simple as the outdoor extension of an apartment home has a variety of terms surrounding it. Is it a porch, a balcony, a lanai, or a veranda? Even within the same area of a town, all of these terms could pop up. What is important is that you understand what you are getting for your monthly rent payment.

No matter what you might call it, the one thing that your next apartment will be is… home. When you begin the search for that home, we hope you will start by visiting There, you will find the only national apartment locating service that’s not only free to use, but actually pays you for using it. Turn hours of apartment searching into minutes and don’t forget to tell your leasing agent that you found your new apartment on ApartmentSearch to earn up to $200 in rewards. Now that is a language we can all understand!