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London-property speak: what estate agents say versus what they really mean

By Time Out London contributor

We've put together a glossary of London-property speak to unpick what all those generic estate agent stock phrases really mean.

Perfect for Silicon Roundabout

You're probably loaded, so be prepared to pay £40,000 above what you expected.


Suicidally boring and unattractive parts of London where no one really wants to live but you now have no choice.

Rich local community life

Dark and dank Dickensian serial killer space under a railway arch with a row of wilting Lollo Rossos. The desperate are calling it a farmers' market and claiming SW14 as the new Tuscany.

Urban chic

Don't panic: you'll have the obligatory half-dead olive tree in a pot, we promise.

Versatile living space

You can call it a kitchen, dining or reception room, or just the only other room in the house, depending on how deluded you wish to be.

Matt Brown

Affordable housing

£500,000 +

West London

Don't worry, your future home has gone all Farrow and Ball vert de terre like its neighbours, and won't shock the Ocado deliverer.

Properties to rent

The Woodstock generation had peace and love, even the X generation who couldn't get out of bed had a certain nihilistic glamour, but Generation Rent, will be forever associated with rapacious landlords, toilets that don't work and flimsy plywood partitions - don't blame us.

Concierge services

Will soon know the innermost secrets of your leaking, suppurating bin bags, so you'd better watch out.

Urban village

Yes, we've given it a ridiculous new name in the hope that you won't notice the chicken bones on the pavenments or recognise it as one of the Kray brothers' favourite murder spots.

Lars Plougmann

High-spec finish throughout

More wooden floors. We still think it's 1997 and everyone wants to live in an Islington gastro-pub and eat goat's cheese quiche. Zzzz.

Creative quarter

Back-to-back coffee shops where people look up from their laptops when you enter in case you're a venture capitalist.

Vibrant neighbourhood

Still some poor people in the area but we're working on it.

Modernist features

Ever since 'Mad Men' went into the '60s and '70s we don't have to sound embarrassed about reinforced concrete.

Decked balcony

We know you can't wait for everyone to see you sitting in your underwear attempting to have a lifestyle.

Executive homes

A little bit '80s and naff but if you've still got a thing about Michael Douglas in 'Wall Street' and don't see what's funny about 'The Apprentice', then outer London and a two-hour commute could be for you.

By Malcolm Burgess who has just written 'Don't Mention It: The A-Z of Modern Bullshit' (Oxygen Books, £7.99)

Find out where the best place to live in London is.

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