Article One: Selling a home valuations vary - which one is right?

publication date: Feb 9, 2009
author/source: Kate Faulkner

Sellers' Property Problems Series
Article One: Selling a home valuations vary - which one is right?

It isn't unusual for estate agents to estimate different prices for a property when selling a home. The reason for this is because agents tend to price properties in two different ways. The good agents will price a property based on their experience and knowledge of what similar properties have sold for in the last three to six months. The not so good agents will price a property as high as they think they need to secure the instruction from you, in other words they tend to play on our assumption that our property is worth more than anyone elses!

To work out which agent is suggesting the more likely price your property will sell at, it is worth questioning how each agent has arrived at their figure. The agent that is more likely to have the right price will be able to show a logical way that they have come to a suggested marketing price. They should have two to three comparisons of similar properties to yours that have recently sold. They should also be giving you an idea of what the market is like now. Do they have lots of buyers ready and willing to purchase, or are there lots of similar properties for sale that you are having to compete with?

In the current credit crunch market, it is likely to be the latter, so a good agent should be pricing your property competitively to similar sold properties and others that are on the market. A poor agent will give you a price that's either the same as those already up for sale that haven't sold or even higher and give some subjective reason as to why they think it'll fetch more than others. 

Another reason why estate agent's can give wide variations is a lack of experience of selling your type of property. For example, if an agent normally sells two and three bedroom properties at around £150,000 to £200,000, then asking them to sell your property which might have five bedrooms or is a one bedroom flat, they won't necessarily have the experience to price your home properly and may over or under price it.

So to try and ensure you secure the right agent and put your property on the market at the right price, it's important to try and choose agents with experience of selling your kind of property and also, in the current poor selling market, ones that have actually managed to sell property, rather than agents that have lots of for sale boards around, but haven't sold anything.

For more information visit selling a home section where you can download our Selling a Property eBook and refer to our Property Valuation Services.   

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