Why Is It Important To Ask The Question, “How Much Is Your House Worth?”
For those looking to sell their homes, it’s important to ask yourself: How much is my house worth?
The property value of your current home will help you get an idea of a fair asking price before you put it on the market. For homebuyers looking to upgrade (or even downsize), this ballpark number will also be your budget for your new place. When it comes to the valuation of your property, variables like location, size, and condition will determine the value of your property.
How Are Property Price Estimates Worked Out?
For a quick and easy way to check your property value, you will want to use our online property value calculator, a fast and hassle-free way to check the valuation of your home. A property value calculator won’t give you a definite price, but these market-value estimates will give you an idea of what your home is worth based on other similar properties that are currently on the market.
For a more accurate estimate you may want to ask an agent for a valuation.
• An agent valuation should include a full examination of the property
• You should get a range of agent valuations to get a range of estimates
• You should not have to pay for an agent valuation and should not be obliged to go with any of them
Estate agents are bound by the terms of the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008.1
What Affects How Much Your House Is Worth?
It’s certainly true that location is king when it comes to property value, but here are a few others factors that may affect it, some obvious, others less so.
• Street names. According to research, houses in a Warren sell for the most, a lot more than those in a Street. Roads with King in the name sell for 20 percent more than those with Queen, and a suggestive name like Slag Lane or Bell End can knock a good fifth off the value.
• Odd numbers. We must be a suspicious lot – apparently odd-numbered houses sell for less than their even-numbered equivalents, and Number 13 is always unpopular.
• Cats, dogs and kids. Noisy, messy or intimidating cats, dogs and kids can knock from £5,000-£8,000 off the value of your house, so keep them tidied away when selling
• Local supermarkets. A Lloyds Bank survey suggested that an up-market local supermarket such as Waitrose can add 12 percent to the value of a property.2
• Decoration. It’s always a good idea to keep decorations plain. Passing fads such as wood panelling or fancy wallpaper may not appeal to potential buyers, and could knock 5-10 percent off value.
• Neighbours. If you’re buying, it’s worth contacting the local council to see if there are any records of disputes with neighbours over noise or territory.
• Storage. Making the best use of storage spaces such as under stairs, airing cupboards, garages, lofts and basements can add enormously to the appeal of your property.
• Public transport. One of the biggest factors in urban areas. In London, for instance, a survey by Nationwide found that being within 500m of a Tube station can increase property values by 10.5 per cent, but 250m further down the road that figure drops to 7.6 per cent.3 Having a bus stop outside your door is not popular though.
• Parking. Off-road parking, particularly near town centres, can add as much as £50,000 to property value.4 If you have a front garden that can be converted, it’s worth considering the added value it will bring to the house.
Another factor that could play a large role in your house price estimate is demographics. A young couple may not want to move into a suburb of retirees, but they may be more willing to buy a fixer-upper rather than insisting on a hassle-free house standing in good condition.
How To Improve The Value Of Your Home
Location and condition of your home will always be the main factors in its value, but if you’re willing to invest some time and money you could enhance its worth in many ways.
• Tidy the garden
A simple step but one that can add appeal. Manicure the lawns, tidy the borders, fix up outbuildings, and consider a decking or enhanced patio area – it’s the easiest way to make your house look more attractive at minimal cost.
• Cellar conversion
This change of use doesn’t require planning permission5 so it’s a good way to add living or storage space and can add up to 30 percent value to your home. If you don’t have an existing cellar you can dig down, but this is a specialist job and may cost more than the value it adds to the property.
• Loft conversion
A very popular way to add a bedroom and possibly 15 percent value to your home. En suite bathrooms are always a bonus, but if you add a mansard roof with steeper slopes you will need planning permission.
• Garage conversion
An unused garage may become valuable living space. You may not need planning permission, but will have to comply with building regulations.
• Bathroom or kitchen replacement
A modern kitchen or bathroom will add value to your house – just make sure the style you choose isn’t too distinctive, as this may put off some buyers..
• Convert into flats
In areas with a high demand for rental property, it can be rewarding to turn a property into flats, bringing in rental income and maximising profit on a later sale.
• Side-return extension
The side return or alley which runs adjacent to the kitchen in many semi-detached houses can be ideal for a kitchen extension, and is usually classed as a permitted development. A partially or fully glazed roof can bring in welcome light.
• Conservatory extension
A conservatory is one of the cheapest and easiest conversions and can add around 10 percent value to your property. Again, this is normally a permitted development but you will have to think about building regulations and energy conservation.6
• Knocking through
Removing a dividing wall between your front and back rooms or kitchen can modernise a home, but be sure to consult professionals if this involves load bearing walls
How Accurate is an Online House Valuation?
The accuracy of an online house valuation depends largely on the amount of information you are asked to input. In some cases, you are only asked for your postcode and house number. This may not be enough to give an accurate estimation.
Of course a very helpful piece of information is the last known selling date and price.7 If this is available, online valuations tend to be much more accurate. If you can also supply information about the condition of the house, size and condition of the garden, local amenities and so on, the estimate becomes more accurate.
Some online valuations will give you a ‘confidence rating’ along with the valuation, which at least gives you some measure of how accurate the estimate is likely to be.
However, conditions change very rapidly, and an online estimation can only be accurate if the information it is based on is up to date.
What Information Do You Need For A House Valuation?
Some online valuations will go on as little as a postcode. This will use data from the Land Registry to give the last known value, and provide an estimate of the current value. However, it can’t take into account factors such as new local amenities or improvements to the property.
Other estimators will ask you for more detailed information such as age, type and number of rooms, tenure, parking spaces, condition of kitchen and bathrooms, and so on. This will obviously give you more accurate results, but still depends very largely on available information on comparable sales in the area.
It’s worth checking other sources of information; for instance you can check the UK House Price Index section of the Land Registry8 for yourself, and the Halifax keeps its own regional house price index with average values based on mortgage approvals, as does the Nationwide. These often update faster than the Land Registry.
The Police website9 will give you crime statistics for a particular street or neighbourhood, and the Environmental Agency website10 will tell you if an area is at risk from flooding or air pollution.
How Else Can You Discover The Value Of Your House?
Although given enough information an online property value estimator is an efficient way to check your property value, an estate agent will give you a more accurate house price estimate. Additionally, using human resources like an estate agent and a solicitor will help expedite the process to ensure that your house will be sold relatively quickly and at a fair price.
When it comes to outsourcing the work, expect to pay legal fees for the processed paperwork. Fortunately, it will save you from the stress and headache of selling your home. But before you reach out to any estate agent, look at reviews to ensure that team up with a reputable company that can complete this job.
However, if you are strapped for cash and you want to downsize your home quickly, there are quick selling house buying services that claim to be able to complete this sale within seven days! Some companies will even go as far and buy your house in seven days for cash. In terms of valuation, you just have to fill out a form with information on your home and an advisor will figure out the rest. But again, whether you want to use an estate agent or quick selling service, read the reviews.
How Much Will You Offer Me For My House?
Although you may be asking the question, “How much is my house worth?” The better question is really, “How much are you offering?” Even if the property value calculator says a certain range or number, that doesn’t necessarily mean that’s what you will get. Quick selling house buying services that guarantee a sold home within seven days for cash may not offer you a price that you’re happy with.
Although earlier we mentioned the variables that affect the valuation of your property, there is one influential factor that you can’t really control—time.
Timing is vital in the housing market. If a house is on the market for too long, it may depreciate. If the country is facing a recession at the moment, don’t expect to get top prices. Putting your home on the market and buying a new home at the right time will allow you to get the biggest bang for your buck.
* With SellHouseQuickNow.co.uk cash buying you can access a super quick exchange and completion service that will prevent your debt from escalating.
* Sell House Quick Now is the best way to avoid your house getting repossessed as we can exchange in as little as 24 hours and complete in under a week.
* You will also benefit from our experience of purchasing homes under threat of repossession alleviate worry cost and stress. Whilst avoiding costs such as agents’ fees, estate agents’ charges, solicitors’ fees, clearance costs, utility charges, mortgage payments and cosmetic repair costs.
* Get the ball rolling with a valuation and avoid your house being repossessed.