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Case Studies. Canterbury Close, Heaton with Oxcliffe

Address – Canterbury Close

Price – £115,000

Time on Market – 12 days

Number of viewings booked – 2

Reason for sale – Moving out of the area


8 Canterbury Close, Heaton with Oxcliffe

Property History

The seller came to us as had been on the market and had a bad experience with an online estate agent. He was on the market with the agent for a total of 18 weeks. An offer was made on the property but a combination of the seller circumstances and poor advice given, meant the sale could not proceed.


Our Solution

We tailored a package for the seller and gave bespoke advice to enable us to advertise the property at a higher price than what the seller had previously been asking.  We prepared an in-depth brochure which as well as being advertised on both Rightmove and Zoopla, was also advertised in the local newspapers, in our main high street office and on social media


The Result

The seller accepted an offer on the property within 12 days.   The offer accepted was 97.3% of the asking price and 105% higher than the property was being advertised by their previous agent.  The sale completed 8 weeks later with one very happy seller!


Are you thinking of moving?  If so, please call Nina in our Morecambe Office on 01524 409100

What if your home could take a selfie? How would it look?

Did you know? The word “selfie” is now in the Oxford dictionary.  It is was chosen as the word of the year in 2013.  At first it was thought selfie taking was a craze, however as I write from holiday, it seems to be a craze which is not destined to go away!

What if your home could take a selfie......
As I sit on my balcony, the couple in the next villa have spent the last 10 minutes prepping for their holiday selfie. It’s amusing watching. Furniture has been moved, the towels tidied away. The rose wine glass has been filled and is bout to be strategically placed. Currently they are deciding if they should get the pool and villa in the shot, or just the villa. They must have taken about 20 shots already! Maybe I should offer to help. However they have got me thinking. This is serious effort, all to look good on their holiday snaps and show off their villa choice to their friends. Would they go to same lengths for their home sale? What can we all learn from them? If your house could take a take a selfie, how would it prepare itself?

Stage your home

Have you ever looked around a show home and seen how they accessorize their rooms?  The way they are colour coordinated and the cushions perfectly plumped?  This is done to sell a lifestyle.  It makes people want to buy.  Think about our selfie taking couple using props in their photos.  If you were taking a selfie in your kitchen, how would it look?  Do you need to move anything?

Consider your lighting

Lighting is key when taking any photos.  Too bright a light can look harsh.  Photo’s at night can sometimes look scary.  Ask you estate agent when they think the best time of day would be for your home.  We often find late morning or early afternoon is best when the tonal range created by the sun is smaller.  Would you a take a holiday selfie on the beach if it was pouring down?

Choose the best angles and compositions

One of thing I love most watching people take selfie is the angles they stand at. How they tilt their face to show their most flattering angle and the way they position their leg!  Even the pout amuses me.  Let’s transfer this thinking to your home.  From what angle does your room like best? Make sure your agent captures those best features!

Don’t make your home look like something it’s not

We’ve all heard the horror stories how people on dating sites have used flattering photos of themselves, sometimes taken years ago!  We’ve all seen the “filtered” selfies on Instagram and Facebook.  This time, I’m going to say DON’T do it.  Don’t make your home look something it isn’t. By all means show it off.  Make it look it’s best.  However in order to cinch that sale, make sure it matches expectations on viewing day!


My name is Michelle Gallagher.  I hope our “selfie” inspired analogy helps you with your property sale.  At JDG we are here to help.  We’d love to give you bespoke advice on how to get the best price for your home.  Please give me a call in Lancaster on 01524 843322 or my colleague Nina in Morecambe on 01524 409100 .

What is home staging?

Have you ever wondered what home staging actually is?  A few people get nervous about it, thinking we are going to ask them to refurbish their home for sale. We are not!

Put simply, home staging is simply preparing your house for sale.  The purpose behind it is to make your home is as appealing as possible to the widest number of buyers with the aim of getting a quicker sale and a better price in the process.  Home staging takes into consideration the flow of your home, your furniture arrangement and looks at eliminating clutter so your home looks brighter and more spacious.



Mich home staging

Why home stage

We want your viewers to want to buy your home. But in order to do so, they need to be able to imagine themselves living there. They need to see themselves cooking in your kitchen, relaxing in your lounge watching the tv and the kids playing in the garden. Home staging is about creating this desire.


Make the most of your best features

Room by room ask your self what are your best features? It might be a view, in which case make sure your windows gleam and the windowsill are clutter free. It could be a beautiful period fireplace, if so make sure it can easily be seen. You need to accentuate your best features. Make sure they instantly standout.


Clean and de-clutter

How clean is your home? Does it sparkle? How does it smell? These are all serious things you need to take into consideration when you are planning on putting your home up for sale. Homes which shine sell easier. We often use the car market as a comparison. If you were selling your car you would have it valeted, why should a house be different.


Get accessorising

Look at your home objectively. Start to think like a show house does. Fresh bedding and matching towels work wonders. Plump up the cushions. Add a bowl fruit in the kitchen. Display some flowers. Pop on your lights. We need to evoke positive feelings from your buyers and make your home stand out from the rest.


At JDG we will advise you on all of the above. It’s part of our home move consultation.  We are are here to help you get the best price for your home. Call us for a free chat. We’ll help make sure your home is the best on the street!  My name is Michelle Gallagher.  I am here to help.  Call us on 01524 843322 or my colleague Nina in Morecambe on 01524 409100

Real Life Success Stories. Moreton Green, Heysham

Property Address – Moreton Green, Heysham

Price £125,000

Time on Market – 7 Weeks

Reason for selling – Upsizing


 Wilton Close

Property History

The clients had been on the market with 2 other estate agents and had lost faith and trust in estate agents.  They had been previously promised the earth and felt let down.  One of the agents had in fact found a buyer for their property but this fell through as the buyer had been unable to secure mortgage finance.  The owners felt let down that their property had been effectively “taken off the market” for a number of weeks waiting for this person to obtain a mortgage.  They advised us that they had very little interest on their property with the second estate agent and even less communication from them.


Our Solution

We reassured the home owners that we would fully communicate with them throughout the process and of course verify the position of any buyer wishing to make an offer. We prepared an in-depth brochure with excellent clear bright photographs and emphasised the key selling points of the home.  The property was advertised on Rightmove and Zoopla as well as social media and we contacted active buyers on our extensive database.


The Result

We immediately received interest in the property. Mr and Mrs Morgan were impressed with the communication they received from us with feedback on the viewings, and the updates on how the property was performing and they accepted an offer at 96% of the asking price within 7 weeks.  We also received a lovely thank you card, flowers and chocolates!


We wish Mr and Mrs Morgan all the best for the future in their home.   Can we help you move?  At JDG we give all of our clients bespoke moving advice.  Call us in our Morecambe Office on 01524 409100.   We are here to help you

How smells can influence the selling success of your home

Have you ever heard of scent marketing?  In case you didn’t know it is a technique used by many businesses in order to help influence a buyer / client’s mood.  Smell is thought to be the most powerful sense we have.   A smell can affect how we feel.  Research has found scent can add to a buyer’s perception of a product’s value.

This week I wanted to look at how the right smell can positively influence your home sale and how wrong the smell can easily put buyers off!

The sweet smell of selling success

Positive Scents

Citrus scents are uplifting.  They smell fresh and clean.  They remind us of sunny days and give a happy feeling.  Think of oranges and lemons.  They are simple scents and instantly recognisable.  This is a great scent to have in the kitchen and so much more subtle than the old baking and coffee joke!


Relaxing Scents

Lavender is a fabulous relaxing scent.  I love it as a plant in the garden, watching how it sways in the breeze and the colour impact it has.  Inside the home, use it in the bedroom.  Spray your bed linen with a pillow spray.  Dab it with cotton wool on to your lightbulbs.  Then on viewings the lights as they warm up gradually release the relaxing subtle smell!


Luxurious Scents

Vanilla is a luxurious smell, often found in high-end fashion boutiques and furniture stores.  It’s a simple distinctive smell one which is often described as warm and welcoming hence it is also used in many hotels. Vanilla is also thought to be comforting and is used to put people at ease, hence it’s great to use in your living areas!


Something doesn’t smell right

Do you smoke?  Do you have pets?  Maybe you have a teenage son with a collection of smelly trainers.  Or even worse, you might have damp issues.  All of these can give off the wrong type of smell.  Remember your home needs to smell fresh at the very least.  That means emptying the dustbin before viewings, hoovering often and opening the windows!
Think of all the smells you love.  It might be the smell of freshly cut grass.  It could be the smell of the ocean.  For me it is the smell of relax at the spa.  Think how these smells make you feel.  Now apply this thinking to your property sale to help get the maximum price for your home!


My name is Michelle Gallagher of JDG Estate Agents.  My team and I are here to help get you moved and achieve the best possible price.  If you would like any moving advice, please give me a call.   We are here to help.  Our advice is free!  Call us on 01524 843322 or 01524 409100.

Real Life Case Studies. Wilton Close, Lancaster

Property Address.  Wilton Close, Lancaster

Price £200,000

Time on the market  6 weeks

Number of viewings 5

Reason for selling Relocating to be closer to family

Sold for  Full asking Price

Wilston Close, Lancaster.  Sold by JDG.  This client had tried to sell with two other agents

Property History

The client was changing agents having tried not one, but two low cost fixed fee local agents. She was struggling to get interest and had only 3 viewings over a 300 day period. Like many other people who choose this route she had been tied to a lengthy contract which luckily was about to expire. She came to us asking for help and was interested to know what we could do different.

Our Solution

To the relief of the owners we chose not to reduce the asking price but focus on the property marketing and what she could also do to make the home look more attractive to buyers. This included better photos and simple home staging. We talked about how to advertise the property and where. We considered who their likely buyer would be and created a bespoke plan to attract this type of person


The result

We generated 5 viewings in a 4 week period. After a 2nd viewing, the eventual buyer offered the full asking price allowing our client just last week to move onto pastures new and live close to the their family and grandchildren. Our client was most happy. Their last agent had advised that they reduce their asking price. Had they done this they would have been thousands out of pocket.  Luckily they called us!


We wish Mr and Mrs Tomlinson all the best in the future and hope they enjoy the benefits of having their family closer.  Can we help you move with a bespoke moving plan?  If so please call me on 01524 843322.  At JDG we are here to help you.

4 tips to set the correct asking price for your Lancaster or Morecambe property

When it comes to selling your home, one of the most difficult decisions a homeowner has to make is how to price their home for sale.  What pricing strategy should you adopt?  Who’s advice should you take?  If your price your home too high, you run the risk of buyers not looking.  Price it too low and you might end wondering, could I have achieved more?  Does this sound familiar?

At JDG it is our job to advice you on how to get the best price for your property.  Different factors are taken into account and these can differ dependent on the current market conditions.  However in order to make it easier for you to understand we have broken it up in to 4 useful handy tips!

4 to help you set the correct asking price for your property

Price Comparison Reports

One of the first things many estate agents look at are price comparison reports.  These reports show what is happening in your local area and can be drilled down to location, house type, size and a price range.  They give a good overview of the local market and an indication to the price ranges in your area.

They are also available in various guises to the public.  Rightmove have a price comparison tool on their website, land registry shows you what your neighbours have recently sold for and zoopla even gives a “estimate” has to what your home is worth.  All of these tools can be used as a rough guide and should give most people an indication within 10% of what their home could be worth.


Supply and Demand

Supply and demand is a major factor when pricing a property for sale.  This varies not just from area to area, but also from street to street.  A prime example is a house we have just sold in Freehold, Lancaster.  It was smaller in size than a home we had already sold across the street, however it had a west-facing garden and castle views.  We have buyers registered specifically looking for Freehold roads with Lancaster Castle views.  Hence this home sold above the asking price as there was two competing offers and for a higher sq m price when compared against the house across the road.  It was in demand.


The condition of your home

The condition of your home is a major factor.  And this is where home owners need to try to put personal feeling and memories aside.  Buyers aren’t really interested in your labour of love, how you spent hours sanding the floor or the time it took to strip all the paint off your bannister!  They see what they want to see.  They compare your home to other properties of a similar price or style up for sale.  In order to ask a higher price, your homes condition needs to reflect that.  Your older style kitchen might be immaculate and your coloured bathroom suite in superb condition, however a buyer will still view it has “older.  To command more, you need to offer more.


The zero price strategy

Have you heard of the zero price strategy?  Take a look at the property portals like Rightmove and Zoopla. Look at their price banding.  Now consider a house worth around £150,000.  If you price it at £149,950 you could be on a long list of houses priced at the same.  Where in the list will you appear?  Price at £150,000 and you’ll be one of the first to be seen!

Also consider if a buyer is doing a search between £150,000 and £160,000 for example.  At £149,950 you would not even show.  At £150,000 you would.
Across the country, the prices estate agents achieve for their clients home varies considerably.  The market conditions differ greatly, as does the supply and demand for homes.  Some agents will take a competitive pricing approach in order to attract more buyers and thus enter a bidding game.  They will talk about regular achieving prices over the asking price.  Other will price high and thus end up reducing the price sometimes several times in order to attract a buyer.  They will talk about “trying the market”.  Buyers will do their home work.  Price your home too high and they simply won’t look.  Price it cheap and you will have a number of keen buyers hunting you out!

My advice is choose an estate agent you can trust.  Listen to their advice.  Act upon their suggestions.  If in doubt question and ask them on their reasons behind the price.  How do they justify it?  Your first 30 days on the market are essential.  When houses are new to the market they command the most attention.  This is why it is essential you set you asking price correctly from the beginning!

If you’d like any advice on the asking price of your home, or indeed if you are currently up for sale and want to know my thoughts, please get in touch. At JDG we love to help.  Our advice is free.  Call us on 01524 843322 or email me at

Case Studies. A Morecambe Client Success Story

Beware of the Estate Agents Contract

When you choose to sell your home with an estate agent, you will be asked to sign a contract.  This is not unusual.  It is standard in our industry.  After all, you need to have an agreement in writing with your estate agent so you are both clear over the marketing price and also the agreed fee you will be paying at the end.  However what is not so clear to many property sellers is the exclusive term your estate agent may be holding you too.  Are you aware of this?  Have you read your contract?

Beware of the Estate Agents Contract
For many years, many local estate agents in Lancaster and Morecambe had a minimum term contract. Generally this was of no fixed term, you just gave your estate agent 14 days notice in the event you were not happy and wanted to change agents.  Fast forward to 2016, and many of those same agents are now having clients sign up to lengthy contracts of 16 weeks plus 28 days notice on top.  The upsetting thing to me is, most clients sign without realising this, only discovering it later when they decide they are not happy.  At this point it is too late, they are stuck unless they pay hefty withdrawal fees.  Here are some points to consider.


How long is your contract and why?

One of the first questions you should ask your estate agent is how long is your contract?  If you are finding it’s any longer than 28 days you should start asking some serious questions.  Why?  Do they not believe in what they do?  Are they not confident in their abilities?  Or, are they fearful that another estate agent will coming knocking at your door trying to poach your business?  If the contract is 12 weeks or longer, ask the estate agent to reduce it.  If they won’t, re-consider your options!  Please also beware aware of any cancellation fees.

At JDG we just have no lengthy contract at all. We are just 14 days notice at any period of time. Simply put, if we do our job properly, keep to our promises, you will be happy!


What does your fee and contract include?

This might sound an odd question, but please find out what is included in the agreed fee you are paying and contract you have signed.  Not all estate agents offer the same service or marketing packages.  For example if you look through the newspaper you’ll find not all estate agents are advertising here.  If you look on Zoopla, you’ll find several agents not advertising your home there either.  Some agents charge extra for their photography package.  One that I know of even charges extra for viewings!  Interestingly, they often won’t point what they don’t do when they first meet you!

At JDG there are no hidden costs and we fully market your property online (Zoopla, Prime Location and Rightmove and in local press.  We even run a very effective Facebook campaign for each property)


A true story

Last month we met up with a lady who owns a modern property, north Lancaster.  We had originally met her in January.  Sadly back then she chose a different estate agent based upon their fee.  Her house didn’t sell.  In the period she was with them she had just 5 viewings, all of which she did herself as her agent charged extra for each viewing.  Nobody offered.  In March she looked at changing agents but discovered she couldn’t until mid May.  Imagine her frustration, especially as she was seeing other properties she was interested in sell and she could do nothing about it.

She came to our agency mid May.  Her house is now under offer at a price she is really happy with.  She had 6 viewings in one week and 2 offers.  We never changed the asking price.  It’s great news for her now, however it’s a shame she had to go through the frustrating times to get to her happy ending.


My name is Michelle.   I am a director at JDG Estate Agents.   Along with my colleague Nina, we are the marketing advisors and branch valuers.   We are here to help you achieve the best price price for your home.   We don’t tie any of our clients to any lengthy contracts.  We have the confidence in our abilities.  Can we help you?   For a free no obligation chat, call us on 01524 843322 or 01524 409100.



How a great viewer can make a huge difference to your property sale

This weeks article stems for a true story.  It is from the experience of a client of ours whose home we are in the process of selling.  Our client shared with us her experience of trying to move home to date.  It made for interesting reading……

How to choose an estate agent

Read more


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