Ah, ‘Location, Location, Location’ (plus its upstart younger sibling, ‘Relocation, Relocation’). A show that suddenly becomes addictive for people on (or hoping to get on) the ‘property ladder’ – that fabled area where irritating phrases such as ‘kerb appeal’, ‘character features’ and ‘adding value’ suddenly become VERY important. Whilst the housing market itself may be predictable – you can put your mortgage on these things happening in the show:
1) If a couple have the sheer nerve to dislike the houses that Kirstie Allsopp and Phil Spencer put forward, then Kirstie will barely disguise her contempt and tell the camera that ‘they don’t know what they want’. Phil, meanwhile, will endeavour to be diplomatic whilst looking as if he is crying on the inside.
2) If these asides to camera take place in a garden with a trampoline, Kirstie will always sit on it.
3) Over-the-phone negotiations with estate agents must always take place in the pub, whilst surrounded by half-empty drinks and the strong whiff of desperation.
4) Estate agents must never give a positive answer immediately – because the dramatic wait before the delight (or crushing disappointment) also needs to be present, albeit shorter than the ‘X-Factor’ standard length.
5) If anyone under the age of 35 can afford a house worth over £400,000 then I will automatically assume that a) their parents are rich and have helped them out or b) someone has died and left them a lot of money – anything to disguise the fact that they more successful than me. I also resent any couple that brazenly go on the show looking for a ‘crash-pad in the city’ as well as this expensive house. Why are these second properties always ‘crash-pads’? Just once I would like to see someone go on the show looking for a squalid bed-sit that is only marginally better than sleeping on a park bench during the week.
6) If anyone on the show is described as a ‘professional’ – they must be filmed walking down a busy street with a look of intense purpose in their eyes.
7) Kirstie has a huge destructive streak. If she were to visit the Taj Mahal, Sistine Chapel or the Leaning Tower of Pisa – she would undoubtedly suggest that two walls are knocked down in order to put in an extra bathroom.
8) Phil should not wear polo-neck jumpers. They make him look like a PEZ dispenser or, even worse, that bloke from Grand Designs.
9) Going on the show is the most powerful aid to fertility in the UK. Even if Kirstie herself is not pregnant, a baby or two will have inevitably appeared on the scene for any couple that she and Phil revisit a few months later.
10) By this time of a revisit, the female in the couple must look slightly different (usually a new hairstyle will do the trick). However, the man will still be wearing the same jumper he had on when they looked round the house in the first place.