What do Estate Agents Look at When Valuing a Property?

Real Estate Agency
Added on January 29th 2020

When you invite an estate agent into your home, they may bite your neck. Actually, no, that’s vampires.

Ahem.

When you invite an estate agent into your home to do a valuation, you’ll probably wonder what they’re thinking as they walk around staring, seemingly, into space. What they’re actually doing is a complex series of calculations that can only be performed by the masters of this arcane art. They’re looking at various factors within your property and weighing them all up against each other to arrive at what they think is a reasonable asking price.

Here’s what they’re thinking about.

The decorative order

If there are piles of junk or old magazines and mystery stains on threadbare carpets, alongside “interesting” old murals or migraine-inducing wallpaper, then you’ve just lost several thousand pounds!

The living space

Estate agents want to see how much space is immediately available, as well as how much potential there is for the smallest bedroom to convert to study or for the under-stairs cupboard to become a tiny second or third toilet.

Speaking of bathrooms…

Bathrooms have grown in importance in recent years, with even that tiny under-stairs sink and toilet combo adding significant value.

How big and homely is the kitchen?

Is the kitchen big enough to host dinner parties in and to be the heart of the home? If it’s not, you won’t get any extra Brownie Points.

The potential for extensions

If the property already has planning permission for an extension or a conservatory, then this will add to the value. If it’s been rejected in the last few years, or if you’re in a conservation area, then this could work against you a little.

Local transport links

How easy is it to get to work, school, town and the nearest major town or city? If there are plentiful buses and trains, cycle paths and easy roads, then this will be reflected in the asking prices you get.

The local schools

This is the biggie, with buyers being prepared to spend a premium for a property in the catchment area for an OFSTED outstanding school. Many parents will pay as much “extra” as they would on private school fees and estate agents know exactly what’s going on at the school gates.

Is the neighbourhood nice?

Is it a calm, friendly environment, with trees and chi-chi delis or is it noisy and next to a main road? These things matter to buyers of all ages.

The state of the garden

While it’s often a case of the bigger the better, if your garden is unkempt or high-maintenance, buyers will be discouraged. The estate agent will factor in the cost of a landscaper if there’s anything off-putting and you’ll be paying this in the form of a lower asking price.

Does the property have a “Wow!” feature?

Is there a stream in the back garden? An amazing porch? A blue plaque dedicated to a famous former owner? Is there a stunning view from the back bedroom? All these things can add value, with some features being especially in vogue some years and old hat the next.

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