You don’t have to be a Geeky Web Designer to build a real estate website!

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Real Estate websites, or any website for that matter, can be very intimidating to someone who knows nothing about designing websites. It’s like another world with its own language. I mean that in the most literal way possible. When you hear web designers talking all that HTML, XML, Javascript, DIV mumbo jumbo, you might get overwhelmed and dimiss the neccessity of building your own real estate website.

If you’re not a web designer, then building a real estate website can be next to impossible. However, even if you didn’t know much about web design, there is still a special “Cheat Cheat” tool you can use to accomplish your website building goals.

I’ll be honest, when I first got started online, I didn’t know anything about building a website. After using this “Cheat Cheat” tool, I’ve been able to get sites up and even learn a thing or two about web design along the way. So let’s talk about this special tool.

Introducing The WYSIWYG Editor…

Now I know what you’re thinking… Here he goes with that web designer mumbo jumbo, right? Well, it’s actually an acronymn. It stands for What You See Is What You Get (WYSIWYG). A WYSIWYG Editor allows anyone to generate HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language aka… the computer language used to create pages and content online) without even having to know what HTML actually is.

I’m going to break this down for you using a very simple example:

Picture yourself in a country that speaks a langauge other than English. Let’s say, a place like Paris, France. As we all know, the native language is French. Now as you’re driving around in Paris (never drive in Paris by the way!) you suddenly realize that you’re lost, so you stop and ask for directions. You see someone passing by and you say, “Excuse me sir, I’m trying to find the Eiffel Tower. Can you help me out?”

Then he replies, “Ummmm…. Essayez-vous de trouver la Tour Eiffel? Juste continuer tout droit sur cette route et tournez à gauche au feu de troisième arrêt. Vous ne pouvez pas le manquer!” (HTML)

Now, you have absolutely no clue what he just said, but you see another person who seems to be a tourist. You ask them about the Eiffel Tower, but they don’t know. However, they actually know how to speak english and french. They say that they’ll be happy to translate for you. (WYSIWYG) So they translate for you and give you your answer in a langauge you can understand. “He says If you are trying to go to the Eiffel Tower, then just keep straight on this road and make a left at the third light, you can’t miss it! Off you go to enjoy your day!

As you can see from this example, a WYSIWYG editor is like a translator. You type in the language you know and on the back end, it will actually genterate the HTML code (the langage the Web knows) that you need in order to put up your website. Whatever you see in front of you is how it will likely look as a website. You can also use this for classified advertising sites that allow html. (Like craigslist and

Let me show you a picture of this in action.

As you can see below, in Figure 1 we have an ad displaying a home for sale. This is exactly how you want the ad to look.

Figure 1:house

In Figure 2, you see the html code. This is that same exact ad, just written in HTML.

 Figure  2:


Your WYSIWYG editor will generate the html code for you. Therefore, all you have to do is type it exaclty how you want to see it and the editor will generate the HTML accordingly.

You’ll always have the option to switch back and forth between the html view and the normal view. Figure 3 shows some samples of what the toggle button or tabs will look like.

Figure  3:

toggle html

All you do at this point is copy the code and paste it into the HTML section of the advertising site. Once published, the code will be read and displayed how you see it in Figure 1.

If you’re making a website, then you can use a FREE program called NVU that has a built in WYSIWYG editor. Go to and you can download their free web design software. It’s kind of like Frontpage.

All you do is create your site,  save your file, and hang it on your server (We’ll probably cover that another time..) However, that’s it! If you can type, copy, and paste, you can make a website or a really cool HTML ad on craigslist.

Here’s the link to the WYSIWYG editor I use for sites like craigslist:

Important Note: Depending on the features you want for your website or ad, the editor may not be able to handle it. It can get a little tricky. Therefore it may be best to reach out to a web designer for assistance. Also, this takes time. Keep it simple and it will be fairly efficient.

I’ve been using the WYSIWYG editor for years now along with utilizing web designers/graphic designers when time was short or if I didn’t feel like trying to figure it all out myself.

In the end, it’s all about getting the site up, getting leads flowing to it, and getting deals closed!

To your Sucess,

J. Lamar Ferren
New Breed Investor

Ps. Hopefully I explained this well enough. If you have any questions about this, I’ll do my best to answer them, so just leave your questions in the comment secton.

Photo: MSClipart

About Author

J. Lamar Ferren is a 26 year old New Breed Real Estate Investor who takes down deals nationwide. Through direct response marketing he uses creative and outside the box methods, both online and offline to attract buyers, sellers, and investors.


  1. Lamar,

    Solid article.

    I am the worst ‘tech guy’ probably in the world.

    When I started my website/blog, I was pretty intimidated myself, but more so nervous that I would not be able to figure out all of the technical mumbo jumbo.

    Thankfully, there are so many resources in place like the one you mention, as well as people willing to help out.

    Advice to those people who are looking to create a real estate website/blog is to not be afraid. Take it from someone who is not very technical himself. Anything can be done. Just ask for help from others that are more ‘techy’ than you, and this will help to ease the pain.

    Best Regards,

    • Thank you Neil. It’s definitely best to reach out to others. However, if you can’t get someone to help you because they charge too much or your just strapped for cash, then using these types of tools will get the job done!

      As Nick said, you want to be spending time doing DEALs!

  2. I used to do a lot of web development work after college, but I’m sooo glad to have these editors now that make it simple. I really like using because it makes everything so simple to create sites fast.

  3. For beginners three words, WordPress, WordPress, WordPress!

    I am constantly amazed by how simple wordpress makes it for beginners to literally make a decent website in one day, and advanced web designers to build impressive and fully custom sites with the same tool.

    Some security issues sure, but I doubt anyone in this community will face attacks by anything more than bots. And wordpress fights those off just fine as long as you keep it updated.

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