Tue 19 Sep 2023
The first step in preparing to sell your home is speaking to estate agents about its current value and how you can maximise your sale price.
Whether or not you already have a favourite agent in mind - and if you do, we hope it's us! - the process of getting your home valued has several steps, including:
- Booking the valuation
- The agent’s arrival
- Showing the valuer around your home
- Hearing an estate agent’s pitch
- Discussing your asking price
Every stage will give you clues about how an agent operates and the one that's right for you, so let’s explore how getting your home valued works and what to look for in the agents you meet.
BOOKING YOUR VALUATION
Whether you prefer to book your valuation by phone, in person or online, your experience will give you an early indicator of an agent’s customer service, personality and communication skills.
- How easy it is to make contact and fix a time. Is it super smooth, swift and delightful, or do you need to chase?
- Whether the person you speak to is clearly familiar with where you live, and if they ask lots of questions about your home so the valuer can properly prepare.
- If you're given the name and contact details of who will be coming to your home, and whether your appointment is confirmed by email or letter in advance?
In short, you’re looking for confidence in who you speak to, a sense of looking forward to their visit, and feeling like you're their number-one priority in that moment - nothing less will do.
WHEN EACH ESTATE AGENT ARRIVES
You can tell a lot about an estate agent by when and how they arrive at your home. As far as we’re concerned, it’s up to us to make you feel glad you opened the door!
So here are some things to look out for.
- Do they arrive on time (or a few minutes early) and greet you with a smile, or do they call you at the last minute to say they’re running late and then arrive in a fluster?
- Do they show an interest in their appearance? Regardless of a suited or casual style, being ironed and groomed is a display of taking your meeting seriously.
- Do they just walk in and wander around your home, or do they ask where you can sit down together so they can hear all about your plans?
Those first few moments will give you an instant snapshot of an agent's character. In fact, you'll probably have a feeling about whether you want to work with them by the time they step inside.
SHOWING YOUR HOME TO AGENTS
Finely tuned valuations consider dozens of factors, from original fireplaces and luxury kitchens to the type and age of a heating system, so fill each agent with information as you show them round.
A perfect walkthrough would look something like this.
- You lead us through your home and talk about each room in detail, mentioning all your favourite features and cosiest corners.
- You share any thoughts you've had about extending or upgrading, show us any plans you've drawn up, and tell us about any neighbours who've made similar improvements.
- We take notes, ask questions about anything we'd like more detail on, and keep you talking to ensure we get every little nugget that could increase our valuation.
Remember: we're looking for as many buyer magnets as possible to boost your final selling price, so don't worry about overselling your home to us: a not-so-obvious detail could add many thousands.
HEARING EACH ESTATE AGENT'S PITCH
Part of picking the perfect agent to sell your home is knowing exactly what they offer. That way, you can make an informed and confident choice.
Every estate agent shares differences and similarities, and they should all take the time to set out their service in detail. A full presentation includes:
- Examples of their photography, descriptions, social media and property portal adverts, along with how they conduct viewings, keep you up to date and review progress.
- Recommendations on launching your home, from waiting for a particular moment, to having an open day of viewings, or a quieter start as an early test of the market.
- Making suggestions around repairs, improvements, kerb appeal, furniture layout, decoration or decluttering: these can show you just how much an agent has your interests at heart.
Ultimately, an agent's pitch should leave you thoroughly excited about the prospect of working with them for what's likely to be several months. So ask yourself: do you feel in safe and capable hands?
DISCUSSING YOUR ASKING PRICE
An agent’s valuation of your home is about much more than where you live and how many rooms you have - that’s why instant online valuations can sometimes feel a bit vague and disappointing.
Finalising your asking price should be a mature, open and frank conversation that takes your plans and preferred timescale into account, along with sound advice around factors like:
- Concrete evidence of similar homes sold nearby so you know your price will secure a buyer and stand up to a surveyor’s or mortgage lender’s valuation.
- How to give you an advantage against other homes in the price bands that portals like Zoopla and Rightmove use for search results - too far down, and you risk getting lost in the scroll.
- Current market conditions and what strategy is best for you right now, from asking a fixed price, to adding a margin for negotiation, or inviting offers over a particular figure.
Our advice should make complete sense, so feel free to challenge any agent’s price if you think it’s too high or low. At the same time, be receptive to what’s actually selling to boost your chances of success.
Are you planning on getting your home valued?
When it comes to selling property in Whittington or Lichfield, no one is more committed to getting you the highest price than our expert team.
Call us on 01543 432099 or message us at firstname.lastname@example.org to get things started - we can't wait to get your move underway!