New ‘Spooky Survey’ reveals that house-hunting is not for the faint-hearted!

New ‘Spooky Survey’ reveals that house-hunting is not for the faint-hearted!

United Kingdom
  • 57% of people would be more than happy to share their house with a ghost (
  • 15% would be put off moving house on Friday the 13th (
  • 30% of people will not be welcoming the Trick or Treaters this Halloween (

With Halloween just around the corner, programmes such as ‘Most Haunted’ seemingly ever-popular and new cinema releases set to scare the uninitiated, new data has been released that reveals just how brave the nation really is when it comes to house-hunting.

Releasing the results of their ‘Spooky Survey’, the UK’s original online estate agent discovered that the UK is split on the subject of ghoulish flatmates. Asking if having a ghostly house guest would be a property deal breaker, it was found that 57% of respondents would be more than happy to share their house with a spook (as long as they did their share of the washing-up), whilst 47% would make sure to have the Ghostbusters in even before the first viewing!

Yet it is not just Halloween itself that gets the goosebumps prickling for many, next month’s Friday 13th will also set some on edge as they fear what bad luck could befall them on such a superstitious day.’s ‘Spooky Survey’ revealed that the day is not an outdated notion for many, with 15% even going as far as to say that they would be put off moving house on Friday the 13th, thinking that their new property would be doomed forever if they moved in on that fateful day.  

For those brave enough to get past the viewing and the moving in stages, it seems that once people are settled into their new property, their home is where people feel safest, adding weight to the aged notion that an Englishman’s home really is his castle.

Almost 70% of respondents to the survey claimed that they are brave enough to open the door to Trick or Treaters on Halloween night, even saying that they look forward to seeing the scary costumes that are sure to make an appearance on their doorsteps throughout the evening.

This does mean, however, that come All Hallows’ Eve, three in every ten of us will be turning off the lights, locking the door and shutting the curtains against the incoming visitors.

Adam Male, Founder of comments on the findings,

“Whilst it seems that the UK are a nation of brave house-hunters on the whole, for some Halloween and the notion of ghostly hauntings in their home is enough to set their teeth a-chattering. With the results of the ‘Spooky Survey’ it is also interesting to discover the role that superstition still plays in the decisions many make, even when it comes to their homes. Whether they are scaredy-cats or onto something the rest of us are missing remains to be seen but either way, we wish all a very Happy Halloween!”

For those having a nightmare selling or letting a property, or simply for those looking for pulse-steadying advice, visit or call 0800 6899955.

Rugby Ranking: New data reveals the property winners and losers of the 2015 Rugby World Cup

Rugby Ranking: New data reveals the property winners and losers of the 2015 Rugby World Cup

United Kingdom
  • 13 locations across England and Wales will play host to the 2015 Rugby World Cup
  • releases new ‘Rugby Ranking’ revealing which venues have registered greatest property price growth in last 5 years
  • The Stadium at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Stratford takes top spot with 35.6% increase, followed by Twickenham Stadium with 28.6%

The 2015 Rugby World Cup kicks off on Friday 18th September at Twickenham, with home nation England taking on Fiji in the first head-to-head of the tournament that will run for the next six weeks.

Yet it is not just the rugby that is drawing the crowds to these 13 key sporting locations around England and Wales. New ‘Rugby Ranking’ data released by, the UK’s original online estate agent, reveals how each location rates in terms of its property price growth in recent years – and the results certainly make for interesting reading.

Whilst Twickenham Stadium will be the venue for the exciting climax of the sporting tournament on 31st October, it is not the location that takes the trophy for the greatest price growth in the last five years. The ultimate prize is awarded to The Stadium at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Stratford which has seen outstanding property value growth of 35.6%, taking 2010’s average value of £310,863 to £421,542 today.

England’s home ground of Twickenham Stadium is however home to the most expensive property, with today’s average value standing at £557,305, an impressive 28.6% higher than five years previous and ensuring the location takes 2nd place in the Rugby Ranking.

Following very closely behind with an average 28.3% growth in property prices and taking 3rd place is the area directly around Wembley Stadium, whose average house price in 2010 stood at £324,921, whereas today it is a massive £417,013.

Another location with over 20% growth is that within the near vicinity of Brighton Community Centre in Sussex, where today’s average property price stands at £386,296, 22.3% up on 2010’s £315,948. Taking 5th place in the Rugby Ranking is Stadium MK (Milton Keynes), the top rugby location outside of the south-east for property price growth, witnessing a 19.1% increase in the past five years, taking 2010’s average of £177,143 to £210,936 today.

Next in line is Leicester City Stadium, the venue that will play host to Argentina versus Tonga on 4th October. Here house prices have grown by 12.6% in the past five years (from £182,911 to £206,042), ensuring that the location stands at 6th place. Following this venue in the location listing is Manchester City Stadium at 7th place, whose average house prices have increased by 11.8% (from £101,079 to £112,966).

The only Welsh location playing host to the Rugby World Cup is the Millennium Stadium, Cardiff and it is this stadium that takes 8th place in the Rugby Ranking. Here, 11.2% property price growth has been seen over the past five years, with 2010’s £160,133 standing at £178,144 today.

Following closely behind is the only south-west 2015 World Cup venue, Exeter’s Sandy Park, having registered 11.1% price growth since 2010’s £225,325. Today’s average value of £250,273 places Devon’s key stadium in 9th place.

Standing at 10th place in the Rugby Ranking is the north-east’s St James’ Park, situated in Newcastle-upon-Tyne and registering 9.7% growth from 2010 to 2015. Five years ago the average property in the vicinity was priced at £145,899, whereas today it is an impressive £160,077. Falling behind this location is Kings Holm Stadium, Gloucester, where the second match of the 2015 tournament will take place. Here average property prices, according to, stand at £148,287, 9.5% up on 2010’s £135,395.

Whilst all of the locations have seen property price growth in the past five years, the final two stadium locations of the 2015 Rugby World Cup have done less well. In 12th place, Leeds’ Elland Road saw an average property value of £86,626 in 2010, with today’s average of £94,742 totting up a 9.4% growth.

Taking the final place is the Rugby Ranking is Birmingham’s Villa Park, with the lowest property price growth off all Rugby World Cup venues over the last five years, with just 8.3% growth, taking average prices from £96,493 in 2010 to £104,518 today.

Commenting on this enlightening new data, Adam Male, Founder of an online estate agent with 10-years’ experience in both lettings and sales, gives his take on their Rugby Ranking,

“It is clear that being close to a UK rugby venue can have an effect on house prices but it is interesting to see how much this can vary across the country. Whilst the affluent south-east is known to have seen rapid property price growth in recent times, other areas across the UK, such as Milton Keynes and Leicester, appear to have also witnessed impressive increases in the past five years when you look close to the key stadium locations.

“With the 2015 Rugby World Cup on the doorstep of these locations, this will ensure that these 13 important sporting locations are the focus of attention worldwide. It remains to be seen what further effect this will have on their house prices of the future and we will watch with interest.”

For more information, visit or call 0800 6899955. 

What price an education? Majority prepared to pay up to 25% more to live in close proximity to a school

What price an education? Majority prepared to pay up to 25% more to live in close proximity to a school

United Kingdom
  • 95% of buyers and 81% of renters would pay up to 25% more to live in close proximity to a school (
  • 38% of buyers and 42% of renters would take a lesser property to be within desired catchment area (
  • School catchment area top concern for tenants when choosing rental area (

With the new academic year fast approaching, parents’ minds will be filled with thoughts of uniforms, shopping for stationary and the school run, yet how many will be thinking of moving house?

It is a well established fact that living in close vicinity to a good school can boost house prices but just how much of an effect does being in a certain school catchment area have on house hunters? New data released by the UK’s original online estate agent,, reveals some enlightening truths.

Surveying both those looking for property to purchase as well as those looking for a rental home, found that an incredible 81% of renters would pay up to 25% more to live in a certain school catchment area. This figure is topped further still by buyers, with 95% of those looking to purchase property rating a school catchment area so highly that they would pay up to a quarter more for the privilege.

The huge draw of living close to a school is further highlighted by the fact that 42% of renters and 38% of buyers would even go as far as to take a lesser property in order to be within their desired catchment area. Whether this is a smaller property, one in a lesser condition or one that perhaps requires more work and in turn a greater amount of money spending on it, this is a prime example of the power of a property near a place of education. also asked those looking to let a property what their key concern would be when choosing a rental location. Interestingly double the number of prospective tenants would put school catchment area (30%) over being in close proximity to a town (15%), with this also ranking significantly higher than the desire to be near to a station (17%).

These results reveal that parents’ needs are widely put on the backburner when compared to those of their children, with people often taking on a far longer commute to be able to ensure that their child has the very best education and shortest journey to school.

With residing close to a school the prominent concern for many, the survey also asked those that were buying a property, whether they would consider renting if they cannot sell their own property. A huge 52% said that they would do so.

Founder of, Adam Male, explains why these new findings are significant,

“Quantifying the influence that being in close proximity to a school has on house hunters has been truly eye-opening. The results of the survey show that most people would stretch their budget quite considerably, whilst many would also downgrade their property choice, for the sake of a school.

“The results make for particularly interesting reading for those selling a property within a school catchment area. When marketing the property, these findings show that real focus should be given to the location of the property in relation to the nearest school, highlighting the benefits provided as part of the enrolment process and the ease of school run, for example.”

For more information about selling or buying a property online, visit or call 0800 6899955.

Alpaca it all in for a new life on the farm!

Alpaca it all in for a new life on the farm!

United Kingdom
  • Howard and Tracy Simpson use money saved from selling home online to buy herd of alpacas
  • Original online estate agent provides flexible service, far cheaper than ‘traditional’ high street agent
  • Apple Tree Farm Alpacas established, offering alpaca trekking in the South Pennines and Calder Valley

There are many reasons that people use an online estate agent: convenience, efficiency, a DIY attitude, affordability… but to save on estate agent fees in order to buy a herd of alpacas? In the case of one couple from Yorkshire, yes!

Howard Simpson (50) and his wife Tracy (51) from Hebden Bridge had always dreamed of escaping suburbia, with husband Howard having previously worked on a farm and Tracy, as a true ‘animal person’, having always loved the idea of having a smallholding of their very own. Whenever the couple discussed what this would consist of, all they knew was that it had to be “animal-friendly”, insisting that nothing could “go for the chop”.

It was following a visit to St Davids in Pembrokeshire that the couple were inspired to get their very own herd of the typically Peruvian alpacas, falling in love with what they describe as the “big cuddly teddy bears” straight away. Yet the question then arose as to how to make this dream a reality? With somewhat unusual dreams, Howard explains that they wanted to take the non-traditional route to selling their home ahead of buying a farm,

“The cost of selling a large house in the area we live using a high street estate agent was going to be around £6,000 which we felt was a disproportionate cost in relation to what service was offered. We also wanted to have full control over the selling process as a whole to make sure we were indeed maximizing the potential of the property. This is why we chose online estate agent to sell our property.”

The original online estate agents, established ten years ago, offer a full estate agency service, backed by five star customer service and professionally qualified staff. Properties are advertised via sites such as Rightmove, Zoopla and Primelocation, as with a standard agent, yet with the service being internet-based, it is far cheaper than selling the ‘traditional’ way.

Howard explains how this savvy move meant that their smallholding dream could finally become a reality,

“I was 50 this year and in one of my birthday cards from my brother in law was a cutting out of the Yorkshire Post indicating 16 Alpacas for sale. We drove down to Carmarthen in South Wales and spoke to the owner Paul who was selling his herd. We bought the boys, 8 of them, which for us was ideal, collected them at the end of June and they have settled in great: Hero, Centurion, Praetorian, Hercules, Forester, Falcon, Emissary, and Bertty (Berttram).

“The cost of the Alpacas was £6,000 and that is just about what we saved from paying a ‘normal’ estate agent which we think is a much better way to spend our money!”

Having previously used a high street agent, Howard and Tracy are now converts to the online means of property selling, thoroughly recommending Howard says,

“Using an online agent gives you the flexibility to manage all stages yourself. The whole process was very simple and the customer service people were a great help. You can tailor the service to your own competency level and do as much, or as little, as you want.

“I wanted to be in control and show people around to ensure that all the best aspects were shown and this is exactly what we did. Then, during negotiations, I could refer back to the points which I knew the buyers were interested in, in our case the large garden and large reception rooms.”

Completing the successful sale of their property and settling into their new home at Apple Tree Farm in Hebden Bridge with their alpaca herd, the couple have now established their new business venture – alpaca trekking.

Taking small groups for walks in the stunning countryside of the South Pennines and Calder Valley, Howard, Tracy and the alpacas have the chance to meet new people, share their love for the friendly creatures and enjoy their new beautiful surroundings, none of which would have been possible if it hadn’t been for the money the couple saved selling their property online with

For more information about selling or buying a property online, visit or call 0800 6899955. 

For more about Apple Tree Farm Alpacas, visit

AB Property Marketing appointed to represent original online estate agent,

AB Property Marketing appointed to represent original online estate agent,

United Kingdom
  • With 10 years’ experience, is the UK’s original online estate agent
  • has sold almost £100 million worth of UK property since foundation in 2005
  • Leading property PR agency ABPM appointed to promote’s outstanding service and expertise

Whether its grocery shopping, booking a holiday, paying monthly bills or using Google to resolve the most recent dinner table dispute, the online world has now become an integral part of our daily lives. With everything that is now accessible at the click of a mouse, why not take advantage of it when selling a property?

Although there remains a high street presence within the estate agent industry, their online counterpart is growing in strength with millions of property sales having now been completed via the internet. It has been predicted that by 2020, online estate agency could increase to 50% of the total market. Trusted online estate agent has thrived in the industry since its foundation 10 years ago, and over that past decade have facilitated the exchange of over £97,544,743 worth of properties across the country.

Joining forces back in 2005, after being inspired to create a professional, more cost effective and understandable alternative to the high street estate agent, Adam Male and Oliver Atkinson founded and pioneered the idea of the online estate agent. Both already successful professionals, they used their expert business knowledge and passion for property to create an innovative and dependable brand which The Sunday Times now rates as one of the top online estate agents in the UK.

Adam Male, Founder of, comments,

“Both Oliver and I had realised that there was a gap appearing within the market for estate agents that could offer both flexibility and a more cost efficient process. The online format negates the need for expensive fees, whilst still offering customers as much expert knowledge and advice as required.

“We are extremely proud of the Urban brand and believe that our site will continue to develop and evolve, leading the industry over the next decade. Everyone within our team is highly qualified, with credentials recognised by the National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA), and happy to help with negotiating the best price for your property.”

Now in their 10th year, are continuing to provide a 5 star service to customers and build on their established reputation within the market. In order to remain at the forefront, have appointed leading property PR agency AB Property Marketing. Charlotte Ashton, MD of AB Property Marketing, comments,

“With Adam and Oliver’s savvy and inventive model, has shaped the online estate agency market, successfully creating a service that has been fully embraced by the UK population. We at AB Property Marketing are thrilled to be working with as they continue to pioneer in the UK’s online housing market with their wealth of experience and expertise.”

Adam Male is available to provide an abundance of expert industry comment in relation to the UK sales and lettings market, including independent statistics, top tips and vendor advice, properties for sale / lease, case studies and interview-led discussions.

To find out more about and the service they offer, please visit

House prices rise like a phoenix from The Ashes

House prices rise like a phoenix from The Ashes

United Kingdom
  • The Ashes start in the UK on 8th July, pitting England against Australia for the 69th time
  • releases new data that shows the rise in property prices close to famous cricket grounds since the last time The Ashes were in the UK
  • Lords is top cricket location, with 18.57% growth in 2 years; Trent Bridge top outside of London, with 8.9% price rise

With temperatures rising and the sound of leather on willow filling the air, the cricket season is in full swing, heralding British summertime. And nothing marks the season more decidedly than the start of The Ashes. With England pitted against the Australians for the 69th series since the very first in 1883, this year’s Tests which will take place on English soil, will prove particularly eye-opening, with the home nation just one series behind Australia’s 32 victories.

Yet, this year, it is not just for the sport that eyes will be turning to the famous grounds that will play host to the Tests, up and down the country, savvy buyers are looking to these locations for shrewd property purchases., the UK’s original online estate agent, has released new data that reveals the impressive rises in house prices of properties in close proximity to the country’s famous cricket grounds, registering striking growth since the last time The Ashes were in the UK.

For those with cash to splash, ‘unbeaten’ Lords is the top location in which to buy property for price growth, according to, with an 18.57% growth in average house prices in the vicinity since July 2013. An average house in this part of London’s St John’s Wood was then £1,145,449, whilst today it registers at a heady £1,358,096.

Coming in a close second, as another location having had ‘a good innings’ in the past two years is South London’s Kennington, home to the Oval where the final Test of the series is traditionally played. Here, average property prices have risen some 17.22%, from a figure of £471,449 in July 2013 to £552,628 in July 2015.

A true phoenix rising from The Ashes, Trent Bridge is the top cricket location outside of the capital in terms of recent house price growth, with properties today on average £221,216, compared to £203,131, an increase of 8.9% since the last time series was played on British soil.

Another location that has not been ‘run out’ of the rankings is that surrounding Cardiff’s Sophia Gardens, where today’s average property is 8.34% higher than in 2013, a still-affordable £189,335 compared to £174,759 two years previous.

Not one to be ‘stumped’, properties in the vicinity of Headingly in Leeds, West Yorkshire are still ‘bowling over’ buyers looking for a smart property move. Here when The Ashes were last on home turf, an average property was priced at £191,611 and today the same is revealed as £206,127, a growth of 7.58%.

Adam Male, Founder of who have released the findings, an online estate agent with 10-years’ experience in both lettings and sales, explains more about the reasons behind these impressive price hikes,

“Cricket is undeniably the quintessentially British sport, with its long tradition, historic significance and rich terminology appealing to our eccentricity and sporting prowess. Yet it is now also clear that the sport, and key ground locations especially, are today also appealing to savvy property buyers.

Recent years have shown that being in close proximity to cricket grounds can boost property values and rental prices. Whether it is purchasing a property that is perfectly situated for a home-grown cricket fan, others are cleverly buying to rent out their properties to such sport lovers instead. Some astute buyers are capitalising on short-term rentals aimed at avid fans when large tournaments are running, by moving out and cashing in. Recent figures confirm this, showing a healthy and steady growth across such locations throughout the UK, with even more extreme price increases in central London cricketing areas, since The Ashes were last here. It looks like we are the nation to back this summer – in more ways than one!”

For more information, visit or call 0800 6899955.