2010 Apr 13th

Can You Count to 10?

How Many Floors is That, Here in the USA?

I’ve spent quite a bit of time in Europe, where the ground floor of an apartment building is the pianoterra (in Italy) or the rez-de- chaussée (France).  The next floor up would be labeled “1” on the elevator button and so on.  It makes it very confusing for me when I go back and forth frequently and I get in an elevator here and forget which button to press.  Evidently certain other Hoboken agents are suffering from that same confusion.  elevator buttons

I’ve seen a new “trend” in Hoboken condo listings on the MLS where an agent will represent that a unit is on floor, let’s say “3”.  In fact, the MLS sheet specifically includes the unit’s “floor number” and the agent fills in “3”.  Yet when I bring a buyer to see the unit, we climb 3 flights of stairs to a unit that is on the 4th floor by our standards of floor nomenclature.  Not only is this incredibly annoying, it is often a waste of my time and the buyer’s time.  Many buyers will say “I won’t look at anything above the 3rd floor”.  I do my best to meet the buyer’s request only to find out that the listing agent either doesn’t get the US floor numbering system or simply doesn’t know how to count.  Of course, I couldn’t imagine that a reputable listing agent would actually purposely misrepresent the floor number of a unit simply to get me and my buyer to go see the unit anyway!  Shame on that agent.  You know who you are and you make us all look bad.

  1. Craig

    I feel for you Lori. You would think every real estate professional would grasp the North American floor numbering system. I really think that ground level should be floor 1 in any building. Anything else is needlessly complicated. Any covered story from ground level up in a building is defined as a floor, so why not identify them all as floors? Under the European system, a 7 story building only has 6 of those stories labeled as floors – yet they still call it a 7 story building just like us.

    But if you think that’s confusing, what about all the buildings in the US and Canada that skip counting the 13th floor altogether? A stupid custom based on an even more stupid superstition. Counting from 12 to 14 must be the new math.

  2. Hiroki

    Frankly I think that’s ableoutsly good stuff.

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