Whether you choose to sell your home privately or on the open market, you’ll need at least one valuation to help you set a realistic asking price. But what does a valuation entail? Who does it and how long does a house valuation take?
Our team of property experts at House Buyer Bureau have put together this handy guide to let you know what to expect:
Who Can Conduct a Valuation of My Home?
Property valuations can be completed by an estate agent or a qualified surveyor. It’s a good idea to get valuations from two or three independent professionals to get an accurate idea of how much your home is worth.
Going with the highest valuation is not always the best idea. Some estate agents will overestimate the value of a property in a bid to gain your business. Furthermore, overpricing leads to underselling because properties that have been sitting on the market for a long time are less appealing to buyers. price reductions make people lose confidence in your home, wonder “why isn’t it selling?” and think “surely there must be a serious problem with the property?”.
What Happens During a House Valuation?
The estate agent or surveyor will assess the value of your home based on its location, condition and various other factors such as the current health of the market and the size of the property.
Unlike when conducting viewings, there’s no need to worry about making sure your home is immaculately clean and tidy. A little clutter will not affect a valuation and most agents will take photographs for advertising purposes at a later date.
The valuation is a great opportunity to ask for advice on any minor repairs or cosmetic work that could help you to achieve a sale. This will save you spending unnecessary time and money on home improvements that are unlikely to make any difference to how quickly the property sells or to the final price.
At the end of the valuation, the agent should tell you what they think your house is worth. They may give you a range — such as £220,000 to £227,000 — rather than a fixed amount. You then have the choice as to what to set the asking price at. The agent should share details of similar properties that have recently sold locally and those which are currently for sale, to provide context for the valuation they have given. Most agents will provide a recommended asking price and an estimate of how much you’re likely to achieve as a final sale price.
An accurate house valuation is crucial to a successful sale. Local agents will be much better placed to provide a valuation that reflects the current market, supply and demand and local trends.
Beware that a property valuation is different from a mortgage lender’s valuation, which is a less in-depth procedure.
How Long Does a House Valuation Take?
Most agents and surveyors will ask you to block about an hour for a house valuation. If you have a particularly large property or one that is not likely to be straight forward to value — perhaps you have extensive renovation works underway — it may be advisable to allow 90 minutes to avoid the stress of returning to work late or missing your next appointment.
Allowing extra time will also let you ask any questions you may have about the sale. Most professionals offer free valuations, so why not take advantage of an hour with a property professional and elicit as much knowledge as you can to help sell your home? A house valuation is not only about getting an idea of what asking price is best. It’s also an opportunity to get some tips on how to help your home sell and to choose an estate agent to represent you (unless you’re selling privately). The following questions might help you decide how to proceed:
- Have you sold any similar properties recently?
- How long does it generally take you to sell a house?
- Have you sold any other properties on my road recently?
- Are there any repairs or improvements I could make to help my home sell?
- What does your fee include?
- Does signing a contract with you tie me into an agreement?
- Do you offer professional photography of my home?
- Do you have any customer testimonials or reviews I could read?
How Can I Speed up the House Sale Process?
If you want to sell your house fast, using a house buying company is the best way to achieve a guaranteed sale that can be completed in as little as seven days.
House Buyer Bureau is a genuine cash buyer. We can make you an offer within 48 hours of talking to us and we will agree on completion dates to fit in around your commitments.