Is there crack in the groundwater?

Every few months or so I begin to ask myself the age old question; Is there crack in the ground water?

This time it’s over the property industry, particularly the rental people. We’re looking for a nice cosy garden apartment and we have a fair sized budget, it shouldn’t be all that hard.

But there are forces conspiring against me:

Firstly, the steaming pile of web un-usability that is GumTree really needs to catch a wakeup call. My single biggest gripe is simple; now that all modern web browsers support tabs you really should allow users to open up a particular item in a new tab. Instead they use some nonsensical javascript navigation that even I, who remember, am the Elvis Presly (the fat narc’d up one) of javascript, can not make sense of… I mean, I understand how it works, I just can’t understand why they did it. Funnily enough, there are actually html anchors for regular links and they’re set up properly, but then they also have this javascript onclick event that strongarms the browser and forwards you to the same page the anchor tag does. You know in case your browser happens to support javascript but doesn’t support html.

(I know there are firefox plugins that allow me to selectively disable javascript for particular sites but as you can imagine, other elements of their site break horribly without javascript)

Secondly, it’s the lazy lazy property people who seem to be about as effective and hard-working as the employment agencies. Why would you be more than happy to have tens of potential customers drive out to some block of apartments, struggle to find the place, only to find that the place is a cesspit? TAKE A FRIGGEN PHOTOGRAPH AND PUT IT ON THE INTERTUBES!!! It’s free! It has got to that point where I no longer trust listings without photographs, but then the optimistic care bear that resides in the cockles of my heart says things like “maybe it’s a really nice place and the granny selling it pre-dates chemical photo-lithography“… maybe indeed, until I discover it’s a property agency with a website.

Thirdly, if you’re paying attention you’ll see how this is close to number 2. If you’re going to take pictures of your “apartment”, please include 1 or 2 pictures of, I don’t know, YOUR APARTMENT and not 3 photographs of your garden… and only your garden. I can think of only one reason why you would post 3 pictures of your garden and none of the inside of the apartment… 1960s decor!

Fourthly, NINETEEN SIXTIES DECOR! There was a lot of drugs being consumed back then… I think there must have also been a lot of crack in the groundwater because seemingly normal human beings thought that bright/dirty orange melamine kitchen cupboards (complete with plastic air venty hole things) were a good idea. Also, puce bathtubs. As much as I like the idea that someone named a colour puce, I don’t want to bath in that in case I fall asleep and wake up thinking I’ve accidentally overdosed on nutmeg and vomited in the bath, again.

Fifthly (I don’t care if that’s not a word). Please use accurate descriptions without making up new words that are left to interpretation. “Non-modernised” is not a widely used term. Google only found 411 examples of it being used, and mostly by ponsy antho students. Unless you actually mean that there is no flush-based-human-waste-disposal-system I think you might be better off using the words “Old” or “Dilapidated”. While I’m on the topic of descriptions “Near KFC” is not a selling point. Also, “Upmarket” and “Classy” are now terms exclusively reserved for woman in the service industry.

Lastly, (fine, sixthly), If you are in the business of selling property and you put ads for said properties on the internet please don’t be surprised when I get pissed off at you for replying to my email by asking me to call you. Firstly, (here we go again), YOU SHOULD CALL ME, I’m the customer. Secondly, PLEASE DON’T CALL ME, I like the impersonal vapid communication that is the internet. It means I can shoot up to numb the pain while I type my reply to you, you stinking crack addict.


3 thoughts on “Is there crack in the groundwater?

  1. 1) I agree with regards to Gumtree. I lose patience fast and go elsewhere. I get sick of hacking the URLs to open multiple listings.
    2) Read Freakonomics (again?)

  2. When Hodgestar and I were looking for a house, we discovered that while local estate agents claim to make use of the intertubes, and ostensibly have running websites, this claim is in fact greatly exaggerated.

    Their online information was frequently outdated and incomplete, and we got the feeling that each agency contained about one employee (if any at all) whose job it was to copy stuff onto the internet, and nobody else cared. I think this is why they’re so keen to route your email correspondence into a more familiar medium.

    We ended up buying property newspapers. It was the only way to actually get to see anything decent.

    It’s possible that things have improved during the past couple of years, but I’m sceptical. :/

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