8 tips to a better home valuation

July 13, 2015
Ali Batten

Selling soon? Follow these tips to get the best valuation on your home!

1) Tidy, declutter & repair

Valuers are trained to look through the mess and value the bricks and mortar, but being well presented will help. If the valuer is coming this week, you can’t perform miracles but tidying the yard and decluttering the house will have an impact. Fix those small things you’ve been meaning to do for months: re-attach the kitchen cupboard door, straighten the blinds and fix the towel rail. All small fixes that will make a difference to the valuer’s first impression.

2) Provide building plans

Provide the valuer with a copy of the building plans if you have them available. Valuers need to know the living areas, outdoor areas and car accommodation areas for their calculations. If plans are available it improves accuracy and saves time. Ensure the valuer takes into consideration every square metre of your property.

3) Provide an estimate of value

The valuer needs to conduct considerable research prior to inspecting the property. Provide the valuer with a rough estimate of value prior to his/her arrival so they can come prepared with research of comparable sales in the area. Having a rough estimate saves the valuer searching for $300 000 properties if your property is going to value in the $900,000 range. Save the valuer time and research by providing the best estimate you can.

4) Provide immediate recent sales (if you know of any)

Advise the valuer of any recent sales you are aware of in your immediate area. This is because the details of properties recently sold in the area, are often not available on the central property databases until three months after the sale has settled. Also, the listing price of a property in the area is irrelevant to the valuer. A property rarely sells for what it is listed at and so the listing price cannot be considered as sales evidence.

5) List any recent renovations

Advise the valuer of any significant renovations conducted since purchasing the property and the approximate cost of those renovations. The valuer will take these into consideration. It also means the valuer isn't wondering why you think the property is worth $700,000 when you purchased the property 12 months prior for $500K. Renovations you hope to complete in the future will have no bearing on the current valuation.

6) Make a list of the 'hard to see' features

Chatting incessantly to the valuer while conducting an inspection can distract them from capturing all features of the property. To ensure the valuer doesn’t miss anything, especially the hard to see features (solar panels, new wiring, underfloor heating, new roof or pool heating) prepare a written list. The valuer should accept this gratefully.
Usually an inspection of a three bedroom house should only take the valuer about 15 minutes. By all means, ask the valuer questions and ask if he requires any further information about the property, but be aware that normally he needs to get to the next inspection.

7) Advise the property manager

If the property is tenanted be sure to advise the property manager that a valuation has been requested. Often the property manager will not provide access to the valuer unless they have written authority to provide access or they’ve received a call from the owner. This can delay the process.

8) Tie up the dog!

The valuers often come back to the office with stories of the family dog getting out the gate when they enter and spending an hour chasing the dog up and down the street. The dog has a great time and the neighbourhood kids think it hilarious!

Often clients ask the valuer for the for the valuation figure at the inspection and, of course, we can't. The reason for this is two-fold. Firstly, after the inspection the valuer needs to conduct considerable research of comparable sales in the area. He will drive past these taking a note of the external condition and will view the internal photos online. This information will assist him to assess the value of the property.
Secondly, the valuer is only permitted to provide information regarding the value of the property to the instructing party. When the valuer has been engaged by the bank, he can only provide information to the bank’s representatives.
We recommend that clients put forward their case before the valuation. The likelihood of getting it changed after completed and submitted to the bank are slim.

Contact either Owun, Suzanne, Costa or Anthony on 02 9517 1818 or newtown1@mortgagechoice.com.au to discuss your options. Or, if you feel like dropping in at our office, we are located at Suite 106, Flourmill Studios, 3 Gladstone Street, Newtown 2042. Be sure to share our blog on Facebook and Twitter and let others join the conversation!

Posted in: Property market

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