Property Valuation – How To Value Property Online

February 14th, 2012 by andrew

Until a property is sold its market value can never be known with 100% accuracy – not even by an estate agent no matter what they may tell you. However, it is possible to estimate the market value of a property with a fair degree of accuracy (within 10% of the final sale price) using a number of free online property valuation tools. I believe this method is far more accurate than using automated valuation like Zoopla which rely on apply a fixed equation to house prices and can be very inaccurate. In essence, the home valuation can be done by researching the following:

  • The sale prices of similar properties in the same area to the one you are valuing
  • The current and recent advertising of similar prices properties to the one you are valuing
  • The current the property market

There are many free online resources that can help you with each of these points but my first stop is often the very useful ‘Price Comparison Report’ that Rightmove recently introduced. This can be found in the House Price Drop down menu shown on Rightmove’s main navigation bar at the top.

The first thing to do would be to enter in the postcode of the property you are trying to value (if you only know the number and street name of the property, use the post office’s post code finder). This will bring up a list of properties in this postcode that are currently on the market and the prices of properties that are no longer on the market including their actual sold prices if they sold in the last few years. Here is  summary of each of these areas:

‘On the market’ section

This area shows all the properties currently listed on Rightmove in the area selected  (it includes the same properties shown in the normal Rightmove area). Whilst this informaiton is very important for our purposes and should be looked at in detail it is pretty self explanatory so lets move on to the less well know sections that also provide very valuable information.

‘No longer on the market’ section

This section will show the properties that were previously advertised on Rightmove and their most recent sale price if they have sold recently. If you can not find more than one or two properties in this report expand the radius to ¼ mile.  Also, Rightmove will only show the first five properties so click the ‘Show more properties’ link if you see it at the bottom of this section.

Remember, you are trying to find information on similar properties in the local area. You can filter by property type and bedrooms but I would advise not filtering initially so you can get an idea of the advertising and sale prices of all properties in the area. You should be focusing on the following:

  1. The advertising prices
  2. How have the advertising prices have changed over time
  3. How many properties have sold as a proportion of those being advertised
  4. How close are the sold prices to the advertising prices (sale prices that are near to the advertising price normally suggest a strong market unless a quick sale was required or the property was undervalued by the agent selling it).
  5. Are there any particular properties listed with multiple agents over a similar time period without being sold. This may be an issue with that particular property or agent but can also indicate sales are hard to achieve to home owners keep switching agents to try and get a sale.

‘Sold prices in nearby streets’ section

This is another really good source of information as it is not not simply a list of sold prices provided by sites like nethouseprices.com or mouseprices.com. It includes the advertising photos, floorplans and key features of the sold properties if they were previously advertised on Rightmove. It is important to look out for statements like  ‘Auction’ or ‘Reduced for Quick Sale’ in the ‘Key Features’ section which gives you an indication that it may have sold below market value and may not represent the true market value of the property.

So, assuming the property you are valuing is located in an area with similar properties that have sold in the last 10 or so years you should be able to have a pretty good idea of its value using this method.

 

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One Response to “Property Valuation – How To Value Property Online”

  1. February 14, 2012 at 4:19 pm, CSF Property said:

    Lots of estate agents over value properties in order to get new clients on with proper research you can make sure you are getting a good deal. With the economy so bad it does impact so extra caution may be necessary in this sort of climate.

    Reply

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