Thinking of selling your property but don’t know where to start? Well, the first step is to get an estate agent’s valuation of your property. This will tell you what your property is worth in the current market. Selling your property is one of the biggest decisions you will make, so it’s important to get it right. Here are our top ten tips for preparing for an estate agent’s valuation, so that you are ready when the valuer knocks on your door!
1. Clean Up and Clutter Out! – It sounds obvious but a good old-fashioned spring clean can make the world of difference to the appearance of your property. Keeping the place tidy and getting rid of any unwanted clutter allows the valuer to see the full extent of the property without any distractions.
2. Don’t Forget the Exterior of the Property – It is easy to neglect the outside areas of your property. However, do not underestimate how much of a difference first impressions can make. Keeping outside areas clean and tidy will show the property at its best and make it look like it is well cared-for when the valuer arrives.
3. Do your Research – Before any agent visits the property, take the time to do a little bit of investigative work beforehand. Websites like Zoopla and Rightmove have great search facilities for recent sold prices in your area and will give you a great head start in establishing where your property value may lie.
4. Shop Around – Always try and get a few valuations before you decide which agent to go with. Don’t get sucked into choosing the agent that gives you the highest valuation either. Choose an agent whom you trust: someone who is active in the local market, provides good value for money and above all, someone who is motivated to sell your property.
5. Get to The Bottom Line – Every agent will have a slightly different marketing package and fee structure. Ensure that all costs associated with selling are fully explained and that a total figure is given and confirmed in writing. That way you will know exactly what you will have to pay at the end of the process. Then you can compare each quote, like for like, to decide which is the best option for you!
6. Preparation is Key – It is a good idea to compose a list of questions that you would like to ask the valuer prior to them coming out to the property. This will focus your mind on what information you would like from the valuation and also allows you to address anything that has not been covered during the meeting. If any alterations or improvements have been made to the property since you bought it, let the valuer know what works have been carried-out and what these cost so they can get an idea of exactly what you have spent. Do bear in mind however, that cost does not always equal value in every case.
7. How to Show Your Property – Allow the valuer to have a good look around the property. Whilst it is important to point out features that you feel add value to the property, avoid trying to ‘sell’ your property to the valuer by pointing out every nook and cranny: they will know which selling features to look out for. Equally, try and save any questions you have until the end of the valuation: the agent may well have answered most of these before you get around to it!
8. Be Realistic – Everyone wants the highest possible valuation for their property but do try and remember that the valuation process is not an exact science. It is the agent’s job to give you the most accurate valuation they can. If you do not agree with the valuation, ask the agent to explain their rationale: they should be able to offer comparable data to justify this.
9. Allow Enough Time – Selling your property is a big decision and you want to make sure you get all the information you need before you choose an estate agent to market your property with. Try and give yourself about an hour of uninterrupted time for each meeting. Whilst you think that you may have heard it all before, every agent is different and you want to make sure you have covered all bases before you take the plunge!
10. Get the Kettle On! – Only joking…! That said, a wee cup of tea never goes amiss!