Logo

Rated Excellent on TrustPilot 

A Guide To Home Valuations

What is a home valuation?

A home valuation is designed to provide sellers with an estimate of the value of their property. There are various options available if you want to have your home valued, including an estate agent valuation and an RICS (Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors) valuation. A home valuation is not the same as a mortgage valuation or a Home Survey (previously known as a Homebuyer Report). If you’re thinking about selling your home, and you want to get the most accurate estimate of the market value of the property, it’s wise to consider an RICS valuation. Estate agent valuations can be useful, but there is a risk of overinflated prices. 

What happens during a home valuation?

There may be slight differences between valuation processes between different estate agencies and surveyor firms, but the basic structure will be similar. When an estate agent or a surveyor visits your home to conduct a valuation, they will look around the property, inspecting internal and external areas and making notes. Surveyors will be much more meticulous than a buyer viewing a home when they look around the property. They will measure rooms, inspect nooks and crannies closely and record information relating to the condition of the property. A surveyor will also evaluate access routes, consider the location of the property and record room sizes and details about the scale of the plot.

 

During a home valuation carried out by an RICS surveyor, it is common to see surveyors writing information down, visually inspecting parts of the house and outdoor areas and using tools to measure rooms. Surveyors will also consider potential opportunities to enhance the property or add value when conducting a valuation. 

Why are property valuations important?

There are two main reasons why people pay for a home valuation. The first is to get an estimate for an asking price when selling a house or an apartment. The second is to help sellers to budget for their next move. 

 

There are multiple factors that can influence asking prices, and it’s beneficial to get an accurate valuation so that you know where to set the bar. Estate agents can provide home valuations, but in some cases, the valuation may be higher than valuations provided by surveyors. If you are selling your home, or you are considering putting the property up for sale and you are using an estate agent to value your home, it’s wise to get a series of valuations so that you have a range of prices. 

How long does a valuation take?

There is no set time frame for a home valuation and the duration may vary from one property to another. Larger homes, for example, will take longer to value than small flats. Typically, you can expect surveyors to take up to an hour to value a property. 

Tips to help you prepare

If you have a valuation booked, it’s beneficial to prepare in advance so that you are ready for the appointment and you can take advantage of opportunities to boost the value of your home. Here are some tips:

  • Declutter and clean your home
  • Finish off DIY jobs
  • Freshen up paintwork
  • Clear the driveway and ensure easy access to the property
  • Enhance natural light by opening the curtains wide, leaving internal doors open and using mirrors to bounce light around
  • Make living spaces welcoming with touches such as plants, flowers and soft furnishings
  • Write a list of questions to ask the surveyor
  • Make sure you have any paperwork you need to hand

When will I know how much my home is worth?

In some cases, it is possible to get an idea of a valuation during the visit, but in others, you may be asked to wait so that a surveyor or estate agent can review the information before they provide a figure. It should not take long to get your valuation. Once you have been given a figure, feel free to ask questions and find out more. Some sellers may want to learn more about the potential to add value if they’re not 100% sure they want to move, for example. 

Steps to add value to your home

For most people, buying a home is the most significant financial investment they will make in their lives. It’s natural to want to enhance the value of your asset and get the best price when it comes to selling. There are several steps you could consider to add value to your home if you’re not in a hurry to sell. These include:

  • Apply for planning permission: this can make your home more appealing to buyers and attract a wider range of buyers
  • Consider adding an extension, a conservatory or a garden room 
  • Create space for a home office
  • Convert an attic or basement
  • Revamp the kitchen and bathrooms
  • Tidy up the garden and driveway
  • Finish DIY and repair jobs
  • Use external space for off-street parking
  • Use storage to maximise living space
  • Consider converting your garage into a living area
  • Cater to new trends, for example, knocking down walls to create an open-plan kitchen-diner

 

In addition to adding value to your home, it’s also beneficial to think about staging your home to make it more saleable. Adding value won’t necessarily make buyers fall in love with the property. Simple touches like freshening up the walls, adding plants, using soft furnishings to add a cosy feel and maximising natural light can add ambience and make buyers feel more at home.

Man in suit carrying out a home valuation

Summary

Home valuations provide sellers with an estimate of the value of their property. If you are selling, or you’re trying to decide whether to move or renovate, it’s a good idea to prepare for your home valuation and think carefully about who you would like to ask to value your home. Surveyors offering RICS valuations will provide you with an accurate market value, which you can use to set an asking price and plan your next step. Contact CJ Bloor Property Consultants for a Quotation.