Estate agents

(Es)stating the bleeding obvious

As a freelancer, there are (obviously very rare) occasions when I end up watching daytime telly. And on those rare occasions, one of the things that sometimes finds its way onto my telly box is Homes Under the Hammer. The title’s pretty self explanatory, but just in case you’ve never seen it, the idea is that people buy houses at auction, then do them up and (fingers crossed) sell them on for a profit. Part of this process involves a couple of estate agents giving the hopeful owners a value for the rent and sale prices they might get. And one of the things I’ve noticed is that it doesn’t matter which agency they’re from, or where in the country – they all use the same jargon. And it’s pretty much universally awful.  Here are just three that set my teeth on edge.


No one ever says ‘Damn, I left my wallet at my property’. Or ‘Have a good day darling, I’ll see you at our property later’. So why do estate agents do it? It seems that flat, house or, god forbid, home are dirty words.

‘Per calendar month’

This drives me nuts. Why do they need to say ‘calendar’ month? Every. Single. Time. I do understand that there’s a technical reason behind it to do with the fact that some months are longer than others. But for TV purposes, can’t we just take that as a given? If they just said ‘month’ then we’d all still understand what they mean. And the programme would probably be done in half the time.

‘Benefits from’

AAGGRRRH! ‘Has’. You can just say ‘has’. If I went around saying that ‘My flat benefits from a garden’ or ‘My face benefits from a mouth’ people would think the lights were on but no one was home. Sorry, at the property.

So what do you think? Any particular professional (estate agent or otherwise) pointless jargon that drives you nuts?

PS If you’ve never watched Homes Under the Hammer, it’s worth it just for the fact that the person who chooses the incidental music is a comedy master. For example, there was one episode featuring a place in Blackburn. When they revisited it later in the programme, they played AC/DC's Back in Black. Because they were back in Blackburn, geddit? GENIUS.