We may not like it, but we all have to deal with estate agents at some point in our lives. But if you can't speak their language you can spend a lot of time running around in circles! Next time you need to rent or buy, our blagger's guide to estate agent speak will help you beat them at their own game.



Any property that is needlessly expensive.

A fixer upper

It’s basically falling down. You will need to replace everything from floorboards to plumbing. You may as well knock it down and start again.

Needs updating

This can be one of two things. Either it’s a 70s timewarp or the electrics needed to be replaced at least a decade ago.


This doesn’t actually mean it’s big, it’s spacious only when compared to some of the tiny hovels on the market.


This can refer to anything built up until the millennium. It doesn’t mean you’ll be looking at a nice Victorian house.


Code for hideous or just really weird. You may be going to view a converted public toilet.




Forget about being able to swing a cat, you’ll need to lose weight to get through the door!


If you thought bijou was bad, compact is even smaller! Think studio flat the size of a small hotel room.

Double bedroom

You will be able to get a double bed in there as long as you don’t need any floor space and you build the bed in the room. It’s basically a double bed-sized cupboard.

Spacious double bedroom

What you would normally expect from a double room. You may even be able to have a kingsize bed, lucky you!

Well connected

There is a bus stop somewhere within walking distance. Be prepared to walk for half an hour.

Good transport links

The property is so close to the train station or motorway that the flat actually shakes.

Sought after

This just means the property market has gone bonkers. According to estate agents, a cupboard in a field is desirable.



Good value

If you think a 1-bed flat for more money than you’re likely to earn in 20 years is good value, then yes, it’s good value.


This just means it is a normal-sized living room with oven and a few kitchen cupboards in the corner.

Open-plan living space

This is estate agent speak for a studio flat. Fingers crossed it isn’t so open-plan that you can do your washing up whilst sitting in the bath!

Mature garden

Really? That wilderness out there is a garden?

Low maintenance garden

The garden is a concrete patio.

Rural location

The property is literally in the middle of nowhere. You’d be lucky to have a road nearby, let alone any way of getting anywhere.

Guide price

The estate agent’s cunning way of getting you to pay more than you need to by making you think you are in a bidding war.


Next time you have to deal with an estate agent, you’ll be able to decode what they REALLY mean!