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How to be your own secret agent

Have you ever watched Phil Spencer’s Secret Agent?  It’s a fab property programme on Channel 4.  Each episode features a house which the owners are struggling to sell.  Some of them have been trying for months, others years despite a fast moving housing market.


Every house has issues which generally the owner can’t see (often its smell related, sometimes the colour scheme and nearly always, lots of clutter).  The owners always blame the estate agent for the house not selling and say things like “I presumed the buyer would see past that” or “Surely the buyers can sort out the garden”.  Phil goes in to the house, prepares a to do list which he then presents to the buyers.  Often he has to persuade them to do the jobs and basically points what we, the tv viewers feel are rather obvious! It makes great watching, as Phil is without fail always right and the house generally goes onto sell.

Sadly Phil Spencer can’t go to every house in the Uk that struggles to sell, neither is freely available to call in to Lancaster or Morecambe, hence why we are here to help.  Our job isn’t just to value your home.  We are here to give you all the help and advice you need to get you the best price and in the best time possible.  It works.  According to the latest statistics from Rightmove we sell properties on average 12 weeks faster than our nearest 2 competitors*

Here are some typical issues which stop houses selling and how they can be easily improved without spending a fortune



Room by room box up items you rarely use.  This could be books, Cd’s, Dvd’s.  Open up drawers, wardrobes and pack away old clothes.  Clear the kitchen cupboards making space for excess items from the work surfaces. Tidy bedside cabinets.  Pack away any toys that your children no longer play with.

Why?  Your rooms will start to look more spacious and potential buyers won’t think your home has storage issues.


Dated Bathroom

Is your bathroom letting your home down?  Even an older suite can be dressed up to look good.  Make sure your bathroom sparkles.  Hideaway all the cleaning products.  Make sure you don’t have shampoo bottles gathered around the bath edge.  Re grout the tiles if needed.  Dress your bathroom with new matching fluffy tiles

Why?  Buyers need to see your bathroom as fresh and relaxing



How does your decor look?  Is it garish or maybe a bit grubby caused by your pets or children?  Do your kids bedrooms have posters everywhere of the latest pop groups or football clubs?  If so its time to update and freshen it.  Take down those posters.  Make your decor more neutral.  Make sure your paintwork is neat.  There’s nothing worse than seeing a badly decorated room.

Why?  Improving the decor is the most cost-effective thing you can do to help get the best price for your home


Sad looking garden / yard

How does your garden look?  Your garden needn’t look sad just because of the time of year.  Keep it neat.  Cut back anything that is dead.  Add seasonal plants.  Power wash the patio and yard.  Hide the bins.  Potted plants can soon brighten up a yard!

Why?  Buyers want to envisage how they can use your outside space when the better weather comes.
Secret Agent is a great programme.  I’m property obsessed so it’s perfect television for me.  Sadly the current seasons programme has finished. However if you follow our tips, you’ll soon have selling success.  We have lots of ideas so if your problem isn’t listed, please let me know and I’ll help you all I can.
If your home is struggling to sell, or you’d like some free helpful selling advice, please get in touch.  We really are here to help Lancaster and Morecambe move!
*(results taken from Rightmove, Lancaster branch)

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