Agents warned they are missing out on ‘disabled’ market

Property portal The House Shop which recently rebranded away from its private sales offering as the Little House Company to include agents, has launched a property search function aimed at disabled home hunters

Nick Marr of The House Shop claimed estate agents are losing “valuable business” to the private sales market.

He said accessible sellers of accessible homes are turning to the For-Sale-By-Owner service on his website, after receiving negative feedback from agents. Some 10% of the UK’s population describe themselves as disabled.

Marr said: “Unfortunately, many estate agents are failing to recognise this.”

He said: “Disabled home owners are increasingly turning to direct sales or peer-to-peer selling to market their homes after failing to find suitable buyers through estate agents.

“Over the years we have had a number of disabled home owners approach us after being advised by their agent to rip out or downplay accessible improvements so that their property appeals to the broadest possible market.

“For home owners who have spent in some cases tens of thousands of pounds improving and adapting their homes, this is the last thing they want to hear.”

Conrad Hodgkinson, of specialist firm Accessible Property Register, said he supported Marr’s comments.

He said: “Until estate agents get the message that access is a plus and that marketing property that meets the needs of all increases the range of potential purchasers, not much is likely to change and disabled and older people will continue to struggle to find suitable property.”

Marr added: “Agents that use agency software should ensure that these companies also pass on any highlighted accessible features to sites like ours and other portals.”

On The House Shop and the Accessible Property Register, agents will now be able to pinpoint:

  • Access to upper floor via stairlift
  • Access to upper floor via wheelchair lift
  • Adapted bathroom
  • Adapted kitchen
  • Entrance level bath or shower room
  • Entrance level WC
  • Environmental or SMART controls
  • Fixed or tracking ceiling hoist
  • Intercom/entry-phone
  • Level access shower/wet room
  • Level access to all main living floor rooms
  • Level access to garden/grounds
  • Level or ramped access to the property
  • No steps on approach to property
  • Off-street or unrestricted on-street parking
  • Sheltered housing
  • Stair-lift
  • Supported living (warden or other assistance available on site)
  • Wheelchair access
  • Wheelchair lift
  • Wide doors
  • Wider-than-standard doorways



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  1. ringi

    But not if the agent is OnTheMarket, then the one other portal rule will stop it!

  2. PeeBee

    Come on, Mr Marr – you seriously need to keep up with the programme!

    Already been done.  Failed miserably, I believe.

    (so, by the way, has Feng Shui’d Homes; Homes With ghosts; Exorcised Homes; OCD Owner Homes; Sh!tBin Homes… the list is endless.)

    You want to be “unique”.  Give advertisers value for money; don’t shaft them; don’t fail them – and above all treat them WITH RESPECT and like human beings.

    Do those things and do them well – you will soar up there with the eagles.

    1. smile please

      PeeBee on a roll! – look at all the likes you are accumulating lately! and very few dislikes, what happened??!!

      1. smile please

        I spoke too soon! :-0

    2. PropertyyWatcher

      PeeBee I think it is slightly unfair to the disabled community to say “sod it, we tried ti once, it failed. good luck finding a home that allows you to live independently!” – Marr may not be the man to do it, but good to see someone trying to bring disabled access properties back into the mainstream.

      1. PeeBee


        WHERE did I say any of the above?

        Cheap digs score no points with sensible readers when they are completely without substance.

        Suggest you at least try to ensure there’s a morsel of meat on my ankle before you try to gnaw it.

        1. DavidLast

          True. But you did compare accessible property, as a market and it’s likelihood to fail, to that of homes with ghosts etc. This is surely unfair and implies that you mean “don’t bother trying” which propertyywatcher has pointed out. Many disabled people come into my office and tell me of their struggles to sell, I think anything that helps will be welcomed by a disgruntled community.

          1. PeeBee

            Mr Last

            No, Sir – I simply pointed out that what Mr Marr is seemingly heralding to be an USP for his website has been tried previously – again seemingly without success.  As have pretty much every “unique” marketing ploy known to man – but then you should know and acknowledge that as you are an Estate Agent…

            1. PropertyyWatcher

              …. but you did compare accessible property to “homes with ghosts”… it’s right there in writing…. I suggest that you try explaining yourself a bit better if that is not what you meant…. because that IS what you said

              1. PeeBee

                Nope.  I didn’t compare “accessible property” to “homes with ghosts” at all.

                I stated to the person who is subject of the above reworked ADVERTORIAL Press Release that the CONCEPT OF “MARKETING” homes with “mentionable features” such as those examples I quoted had all been tried without success.

                You can read it whichever way you like to suit your particular agenda.

                Maybe for your next trick you will be launching a website that groups homes into front door colours; odd and even addresses – and here’s a USP – how’s about going the whole shebang and create a website that lists properties in price order as well?

                Eh?  What you say – it’s already been done?  Bu99er.  It’s back to the website drawing board, I guess…

          2. PeeBee

            Mr Last

            Above you state “Many disabled people come into my office and tell me of their struggles to sell…”; yet when I Rummage4 you I find a LinkedIn profile which states “I currently run my estate agency remotely and employ 7 staff to run the office day to day. I have taken time off to develop industry specific knowledge and find new ways of improving our service.”

            Which is it, Mr Last.  According to the latter you’re not AT your office for these people to tell you their woes…

  3. PeeBee

    “Property portal The House Shop…”

    Someone tell me if this “portal” is one classed as a “competing portal” for OTM?

    It’s got more Gold on it than a bus-full of chavs…


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