Valuing a property is a tricky business. You can apply logic, by looking at properties that have sold recently nearby. You can look at overall property prices and Zoopla valuations.
But valuing a property can also come down to experience and to detail. If there aren’t any comparable properties then you need to make your best estimate. A property might look comparable, but the actual particular circumstances may have been different. It may have sold for less than expected as the sellers wanted a quick sale in order to not lose something they had found. Or it might have been immaculate inside and got lucky with the right buyer.
Ultimately a home is worth what someone will pay for it, but when you decide to put your house or flat on the market you need to decide on a starting figure. Estate agency is a competitive business and one way of trying to win your business might be to come up with a high valuation. Short term, this can be persuasive – “If they think they can get more money for it then let’s go with them” but overvaluing can be risky. Of course, if you have the benefit of time then you may wish to try a price that is out of line with local market data just to see if you get lucky. But an inflated price can put buyers off even viewing your home. You may then have to look at your house sat on the market for weeks, constantly having to keep it ready for a viewing. You then reduce the price and wait. You may even have to reduce the price again which can become a negative cycle with buyers asking questions “Why has it been on the market for so long? Why have they had to reduce the price so much?”
People are understandably scared of undervaluing their property. It is usually the biggest asset you will ever have. You want to get the most you can to fund your move, your retirement or a change in lifestyle. But can you ever undervalue a property? Generally in a market such as ours we don’t believe you can undervalue. Of course, we always look at market data and calculate what we honestly believe is a realistic valuation for your property. But starting at a more achievable price can encourage more people to want to come round for a viewing, and then give you an offer. Having more than one buyer wanting to buy your home puts you in an excellent position – able to push the price higher, able to choose the buyer which you feel suits you best (perhaps a lack of chain, or one with funds already in place). If buyers really want your property then original asking prices become a starting point to see who wants the property most and what they are prepared to pay.
We always recommend to prospective sellers that they do not go with the highest valuation. Though the pound signs can seem attractive, it is money in the bank that really matters. Choosing a lower valuation can actually end up delivering you more.
If you are thinking of selling your property then we can help. With all the knowledge of a local high street agent, but at the cost of an online agent we can sell your property from as little as £499 or 0.5%+VAT, saving you thousands. Please give us a call on 01252 819725 or contact us and we can give you a free, no obligation valuation of your home.