I thought this article from Rightmove was a very true representation of the current market and also supports our philosophy at fishneedwater.

Why fishneedwater use a chartered surveyors property valuation instead of an estate agents opinion on value becomes very evident in this article. Even though we are professional estate agents we recognize that our valuations come with less credence than that of a RICS (Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors) survey.

There is a simple reason for this. A RICS surveyor will not value a property for more than the market value to win business and has to abide by the code of conduct set out by RICS.

Let me explain:

Surveyors are paid in advance of their service and unlike estate agents, RICS surveyors have to adhere to strict rules for valuating properties set out by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors.

As surveyors are paid before they come to your property they have no reason to say your property is worth more than it really is, they don’t earn an extra fee to say your property is worth £10,000 over the market value. In other words there is no hidden agenda with a RICS surveyor!

This is unlike estate agents who earn their fee only when the property is sold and therefore need to convince sellers to put the property on the market with them instead of the competition.

Many agents will therefore tempt sellers to come on the market with them by saying they can sell the property for a higher price, but this couldn’t be more untrue (how many times do you hear of sellers putting their properties on the market and a month later the agent asking them to drop the price by thousands of pounds? Why did the agent value it for that much in the first place???) and its obvious from this article that the public are becoming very conscious of this and will start seeking ways to get more realistic valuations of their property.

The fact is, no agent can sell a property for any more than another agent and that’s because its not the agent that dictates the price.

I speak to several surveyors daily and have a business relationship with a firm of surveyors who carry out surveys for mortgage lenders regularly. Its very worrying that every surveyor I speak with confirms they are regularly down valuing properties and its not the odd one or two, its the majority of their surveys.

Yesterday I spoke with a surveyor who informed me that most of his surveys are being carried out on properties sub £300,000 in the South East of London and he is regularly down valuing properties by approximately £15,000 pounds and at times substantially more than this. That could suggest over inflated prices of at least 5-10% in South East London alone.

This article goes hand in hand with another article I read a couple months ago which stated that the average asking price across the UK was in the region of £260,000 yet the average selling price was in the region of £160,000, which is a staggering difference.

At fishneedwater we stand by our philosophy that there are only three items (but three imperative items) you must get correct to sell a property. We believe (and are proving) you can sell properties within weeks not months by following these three simple rules:

  1. Property price – as stated above we use a RICS surveyor for this as they are not biased (they get paid to carry out a survey regardless of the price they value it for. They also survey properties for mortgage lenders and its likely your buyer will need a mortgage).
  2. Property presentation – we use a professional photographer who creates magazine worthy images and floor plans. Have a look at some of our details here and here.
  3. Advertising on Rightmove (as they dominate the market) – No agent could survive without using Rightmove to advertise their properties, but as added extra we also advertise on Zoopla who are increasing there presence swiftly and a handful of other websites.

Here is the short article I refer to compiled with information from Rightmove: