Every so often, I get overloaded on a specific cliche that seems to explode in popularity, even though it has been around for a long time. Don’t get me wrong, I find myself using them and try to keep it to a minimum but its hard to do. While housing market has its built-in cliches:

Location, location, location

And sales related cliches like:

Cash cow
Dangle the carrot
Laugh all the way to the bank
Get your foot in the door
Making money hand over fist
Pick the low hanging fruit
Sweat equity
Sweeten the pot
You scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours
Think outside the box
Survival of the fittest
Firing on all cylinders
Drink the kool-aid
Keep your nose to the grindstone

I think that a lot more cliches have crept into the daily housing vernacular as many markets have been experiencing declines and there are growing economic woes are related to housing.

With all the interest in the financial markets, I am seeing, or just more sensitive to, stock market phrases used to characterize the housing market. Its not that the phrases are used incorrectly, its just annoying that so many use them adnauseum.

I remember when gravitas became a cliche nearly overnight a few years back. Last year, a huge phrase in the news media and blogosphere was:

Dead cat bounce

defined as:

When a stock’s price goes up a little because people have bought it after seeing it go down drastically.

Now that my family has a cat at home, I find it a bit distasteful.

The phrase which gained steam last year to depict the housing market, which is particularly annoying is:

Catch a falling knife

defined as:

To buy a stock as it’s price is going down, in hopes that it will go back up, only to have it continue to fall.

I heard the phrase several times at the recent Inman Connect conference by panelists, and while an accurate depiction, I just found it annoying.

So when characterizing the condition of the housing market these days, lets cut to the chase, because the jury is still out and I am at the end of my rope because the end doesn’t justify the means. I don’t want cliches to be our achilles heel because the depiction of housing conditions requires us to get our arms around it or its death by a thousand cuts and thats no joke when we consider the tangled web we weave so just stick a fork in it and burn the midnight oil to come up with another phrase that knocks housing out of the park.

Remember, at the end of the day, there is no “I” in housing.


11 Responses to “Catching A Falling Housing Market Cliché”

  1. L'Emmerdeur says:

    Are you sure you aren’t making a mountain out of a molehill?

    (I couldn’t help myself)

  2. Jonathan J. Miller says:

    I hope I am not although I may have opened a can of worms!

  3. Noah says:

    shouldn’t have opened pandora’s box.

  4. sean says:

    Maybe we should start talking about the dead elephant bounce that happens when you’re trying to catch a falling samuri sword.

  5. Noah says:

    I have a feeling, if I keep talking about what is really going on out there, my biz will be up shits creek

  6. Jonathan J. Miller says:

    Remember Noah, he who lives by the sword, dies by the sword.

  7. Dan Green says:

    There’s been a paradigm shift in cliches…

  8. Jonathan J. Miller says:

    Because I have a lot on my plate, I seem to use these cliches more than I should.

  9. Kevin Tomlinson says:

    No witty cliche here, but this post was hilarious.

  10. JB in NYC says:

    Great incite Jon. But more importantly, can you see the light at the end of the tunnel yet? Or have we fallen into a bottomless pit?

  11. Jonathan J. Miller says:

    The well has gone dry for me JB because you can’t teach an old dog new tricks.