If you want to put your house up for sale, the first thing you will need to help you on your way is a house valuation.
Read on for some top tips on how to arrange a valuation and the best ways to prepare for one.
What is a house valuation?
A house valuation is an estimation of your property’s current market worth, and the first step in the process when you decide to sell your house.
The estimation of how much your property is worth is based upon a number of different factors.
What determines a house’s value?
Upon estimating the value of a property, some of the things surveyors consider include the type of property at hand, what features the property has, alongside the average price of houses found in the local area, and other market conditions.
How do I arrange a valuation?
If you are looking to get your house valued, you can do so either by asking an estate agent, who will send a qualified surveyor to your property for inspection, or with use of free online tools, such as Zoopla’s house price estimate tool.
However, it's worth noting that free online estimates are not as detailed as an estate agent's estimations.
A statement on Zoopla’s website reiterates that their online estimate tool is “not the same as a house valuation from an estate agent because they can take into account more property information, including features, exact location and market conditions.”
“It’s based on region, property type and asking prices of similar properties in your local area,” the company explains.
How long does a valuation take?
The time it takes for an agent to complete a valuation of your property depends on a number of factors, such as the surveyor's efficiency with the task at hand, but is many decided by the size and uniqueness of the property, and the number of noteworthy features.
However, according to onthemarket.com, on average it takes “between 10 and 30 minutes.”
5 tips on how to prepare for a valuation
It sounds simple and obvious, because it is. Cleaning and tidying is a sure fire way to improve the inside space in your house and ensure a better first impression from a surveyor.
Try to remove any clutter, arrange cushions neatly, clean your floors and any surfaces with stains, and make your beds.
While a good surveyor should be able to notice the potential of any property they enter, regardless of how messy it is, it doesn't hurt to give them a hand in the process - it’s in your own best interest after all.
Increase natural light
Something that estate agents like to highlight on many property listings is if a property has lots of natural light.
However you don't need to have large, double-aspect windows to fill your house with the sun's glorious rays.
Simply ensure all of your curtains and blinds are open and that nothing is obstructing the windows your house does have, to vastly improve the appearance of your home’s interior.
Do some gardening
Adding on from the last point, try trimming any hedges in front of your windows to allow for more light to fill the property but also to tidy up the garden space.
To help spruce up your garden and make your house look grand from the outside, you can always add colour with a range of flowers, cut the lawn, paint fences that are looking worn out and move any vehicles that obscure the view of the property.
The same principle applies as tidying up the indoors, as a clean outdoor space helps to showcase your upkeep of the property - letting visitors know that the property has been well looked after.
Arrange furniture to increase space
Everyone knows that using space poorly can give the impression of a smaller room.
So for the purpose of a valuation, you may want to consider moving furniture around to best display the space on offer, as this is a factor surveyors consider.
Fix broken features
You may want to fix that broken floorboard, sink or door you've been ignoring for the last few months if you have a property valuation coming up.
While something minor and easily fixed isn't likely to knock off significant amounts of the price of your house, little details help to add to the overall first impression of a property and lets the surveyor know no renovating work needs to be done by future owners.
Change your house number for a name
An unusual phenomenon that has been reported, is that properties with regal sounding names tend to be valued higher than those which don't - and higher than a simple number.
According to onthemarket.com, up to £30,000 can be added onto the price of a property with a simple name change.
So start thinking of some monarchical monikers before you arrange that valuation.