In theory, getting an accurate property valuation when wanting to sell to be able to purchase a new home shouldn’t be too difficult, but it’s actually more complex than it seems. Estate agents don’t always have accuracy or your best interests at heart, while online research services can’t be relied upon to produce a correct estimate of value. This article will take a look at some of the methods you can use and which ones are the best for meeting your goals.
The first port of call for many owners who need to have their home valued is the local estate agency. That makes sense in a lot of ways. Local agents have knowledge of current demand, and they’re readily available on the high street. But relying on an estate agent often isn’t good enough. Agency businesses rely on commission on sales to be profitable, so sometimes they have an incentive to be somewhat inaccurate with valuations. If, for example, they need a speedy sale to improve their cash flow, they may undervalue a property slightly to attract potential buyers – or if they can wait for a larger chunk of cash, they may overvalue it and cause you a delay in selling. All strictly legal of course, but not always in your best interests.
Hire an independent specialist
Some sellers decide that the smartest move is to use an independent specialist. Step forward the property surveyors: they value properties for mortgage providers so are well aware of what local properties are worth. The sector is varied, and some surveyors specialise in particular services. One such is RVA Surveyors, an independent company that is highly skilled at property valuation as it acts for numerous clients that are seeking to challenge a business rates assessment.
Do some research
You can take charge of the process yourself by doing some research. Online services which bring together local data and automatically calculate estimates can be good starting points. In addition, you can also look up evidence about market performance in the local area from organisations such as the Land Registry.
Remember, though, that this often won’t be enough to get you fully up to speed on how much your property is actually worth. Online statistics can sometimes be skewed: the sale of a home near you a couple of years ago, for example, can’t be relied upon as a cast-iron indicator of the value of your home in the here and now. And, of course, the sites don’t take into account anything that’s specific to your home which isn’t in the public domain. if you’ve recently had a swanky new kitchen fitted, for example, websites which give estimations of property values won’t be able to factor that into the final figure.
When it comes to getting your property accurately valued, it’s sadly not as simple as it might seem. Estate agents can’t always be relied upon, and online services also have their limitations. But luckily, there are alternatives. By kick-starting the process through your own research and by employing a reliable independent consultant there are ways in which you can secure an accurate valuation.