What Is Your House Worth?

July 28th, 2023

We learn this on day one of Estate Agency School* – the short and the sweet of it is that it’s worth what someone is prepared to pay for it.

So, how do you find out what it’s worth without having to put it on the market?

Firstly, take a look at the property portals – Rightmove & Zoopla – to see what properties are on the market, that are like yours. Remember to consider both properties that are ‘SOLD or UNDER OFFER’ and those that are ‘For Sale’.  Those that are for sale and have been for more than 6 weeks are generally considered to be overpriced.

Secondly, you can ask an estate agent to come and value the property. Bear in mind that estate agents can’t ‘value’ properties (in fact no one can as it’s only worth what someone is prepared to pay), however, they can give you a guide as to what they think it might achieve and what you should put the property on the market for.  They should be able to provide you with information to support their figures rather than dazzling you with a figure you cannot refuse.

The third way is to use an instant valuation tool. This is where you can input your postcode & address, the number of bedrooms you have and other such information, and the ‘automated valuation model’ (AVM) will come back to you with a ‘valuation’ of the property. These are often not that accurate as the instant valuation tool is unable to work out what improvements you have made to the property, or look at hyper local events that may have an effect the valuation.
They’re useful as a guide, but we wouldn’t rely on them as gospel. If you’re thinking of selling or just curious about what the instant valuation tool will say your house is worth, then feel free to have a play around with my instant valuation tool.

The last way to find out what your house is worth is to get a qualified surveyor out to the property. In theory, a surveyor is the only qualified person to ‘value’ a property.

A surveyor will compile a list of comparable evidence of similar properties that sold in the vicinity and, some might say, ironically, will often consult estate agents(!), as well as look at historic data through the remortgage database. They also have access to a more powerful AVM that looks at numerous data points to help them come up with a ‘true valuation’. These valuations are based on evidence and science.

However, that can never account for the buyer who will pay £10k or £20k or even £50k more than the surveyor’s valuation because they want to get their child into the nearby school, or they love the countryside views that someone might have. 

So in all honesty, we’re back to where we started, the only way to find how much your house is truly worth at any point in time, is to put it on the market, and see what someone is prepared to pay for it…

By the way, re agency school *there is no such thing but some of us do have formally recognised industry qualifications…

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