Funny money: If your name is Derek, you can sell your house for free

17 May 2018

Good news if your name is Derek: you can sell your house online without any estate agent’s fees if you put it on the market now as the offer ends on 30 June.

It’s about time somebody did something for Dereks. The 1930s were a golden age for blokes called Derek, when it was consistently one of the UK’s top 20 male names.

However, since the dizzying high point of 1934, when it was the 13th most popular name for baby boys, Derek has slipped out of favour and firmly into the ranks of the uncool. It fell out of the top 100 in 1975 and has never returned, according to the Office for National Statistics.

But online estate agent HouseSimple has taken pity on the unloved name and wants to rehabilitate it. Anyone named Derek who signs up now will have the agent’s usual £995 fee waived.

Terms and conditions are, naturally, very strict: Derek must be your first name, you must own or part-own the property and you must show ID such as a birth certificate, passport or driving licence.

Once you’ve signed up and your property is live on the site, then you will be eligible for HouseSimple’s standard selling period, which is six months.

Tempted to change your name to save £959 in fees? While it only costs £36 to change your name by deed poll, it can take three to eight weeks to go through.

Meanwhile, getting a new name on a driving licence is free but it can also take three weeks, as does a standard passport application at a cost of £75.50 – which would have to be done before you register the new name with the Land Registry and answer to the name of Derek…

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