As West London estate agents Horton and Garton are often asked a pertinent question by would be sellers; ‘How much is my property worth?’
Selling a home can be an emotive experience and the answer provided by a selling agent can trigger a range of responses from happy surprise to disappointment.
It is a question that requires research and consideration, and importantly intricate local market knowledge to answer. And invariably, as is often the case, different selling agents will offer varying values. Pricing correctly from the outset of marketing can achieve a better outcome for a seller, as buyers are largely put off by over-inflated price tags deeming the property to be a waste of time if the seller is out of touch with the real market value.
Beyond the figure given in an estate agents market appraisal, the real value of a property will then potentially come under scrutiny once more when a lender’s valuer gives their opinion on the property’s worth so that the bank or lender can decide whether they will provide a loan for the buyer’s mortgage.
The London property market is fast moving and ever changing meaning pricing and strategy can be hugely important for successfully selling.
How does an estate agent decide how much a property is worth?
An estate agent will establish the current market value and the appropriate strategy for selling a home during a Market Appraisal.
To decide how much a property is worth they will visit the property in person and assess its condition, location, any outside space or additional buildings and unique factors, character and period features.
Together with the property itself, a selling agent considers the local housing market conditions and analyses similar nearby properties that have recently sold in the area taking sold price data from sources such as Land Registry.
Based on this information, the estate agent will provide the seller with a suggested guide price and marketing strategy.
What research can a seller do to confirm a property price?
It is sometimes the case that a seller will want to explore a property’s value themselves, away from the estimate provided by a selling agent as a result of the market appraisal.
There are several ways in which a homeowner can gain an idea on the value of their home, some more authoritative than others. There are some online calculators that offer estimates but as these are based only on what is listed online about a home, this cannot be relied upon.
These are some ways that a seller can explore the value of their home:
Researching the local property market
One of the quickest ways to gain a rough idea on the value of your property is to research the local property market using online property portals such as Rightmove or Zoopla. It’s important to remember that the listed ‘for sale’ price is not the confirmed figure that a home has successfully sold for and depending on market conditions it could be higher or lower than this figure.
Consulting a professional surveyor
At any time, a homeowner can engage with a professional surveyor who can conduct a property valuation. A surveyor can provide an unbiased and independent assessment of the property’s value.
Checking sold property prices
By checking the final sold prices of local homes, a potential seller can gain a good understanding of the actual value of their home. Especially if a home that is very similar in size and position, on the same road or nearby roads has sold recently – this is information that both an estate agent and the bank valuer will consider when deciding how much a property is worth.
Horton and Garton actively encourages potential sellers to conduct their own research should they feel the need as pricing correctly from the outset is paramount to successfully selling your home.
Why is price important when selling a property?
The advertised price of a property is incredibly important when selling and can greatly affect the success of a sale.
Having the right advertising price when launching a property to the market will often attract a greater number of potential buyers and often leads to a quicker sale.
The opposite happens when an over inflated price tag is listed and can lead to a property sitting on the market for a long time or ultimately the property not selling at all.
Overpricing tends to result in far fewer viewings and far less offers as buyers might believe the vendor is unrealistic. In most cases, eventually the listed sale price is lowered to attract buyers.
What is the difference between an Estate Agent Market Appraisal and a Bank Valuation?
Whilst some selling agents might refer to a market appraisal as a valuation on the basis that they are offering an idea on the value of a property, they are not conducting a formal valuation as a professional surveyor will do on the behalf of a lender for a buyer to obtain a mortgage.
An estate agent’s market appraisal is an estimate of a property’s worth that provides the seller with a suggestion on the guide price they would recommend marketing the property at to successfully sell it.
By comparison a bank valuation is an assessment of a property’s value conducted by a qualified professional surveyor on the behalf of a lender.
The purpose of a formal valuation is to help the lender to determine the amount of money they are willing to lend to the buyer, to confirm that the property will provide adequate security for the loan.
Selling your property
Pricing is incredibly important when selling a property, whether it is a competitive market or a more muted climate, the advertised price and strategy for selling can have significant impact on the time it takes for the property to sell and the eventual sale price achieved.
To discuss your plans to sell, please do get in touch with our team.