If you’re thinking of selling your house, the first thing to do is work out how much you might sell it for. There are lots of tools that help calculate your house value to give you an approximate figure.
By knowing what affects a property’s value you can also make your home more appealing and increase its asking price before you sell it.
House prices have risen significantly in the past year. And in November 2022, they were up 10.3% annually on average, according to the Land Registry.
So there's a good chance if you've not had your house valued in a while that the price may have increased.
Here we'll take a look at:
- How to value a house
- How to find out how much your house is worth
- Straightforward ways to make your home more appealing to home buyers.
1. Find houses that are sold near you
A good way to calculate house value is to look online at how much other houses in your area have sold for.
There are several different websites offering this information for free, including:
They can give you an approximate figure for the value of your home.
These services take their information from Land Registry and the Registers of Scotland. It usually takes around 3 months for a house that’s been sold to appear on these lists.
2. Look at price trends by your area and nationally
When you’ve looked up how much local houses are selling for, it’s also worth looking at how the housing market is doing across the country.
You should be able to see average national house prices as well as the number of properties being sold. This information can help you calculate your house value so you at least have a rough idea on how much your property could sell for.
There are lots of house price indices that are released monthly, for example Halifax and Nationwide. But the Land Registry's report is probably the most reliable as it's based on actual sales.
They all use different data so it’s worth checking out a few different reports to get a full picture of the housing market.
3. Use a house value calculator
If you’re looking for a rough estimate of your home value, you can access a free house price index calculator online such as:
- The Land Registry's calculator
You can also get a free valuation from:
4. Consider what influences your house value
A few things affect the home’s value including:
The size and layout of the house
The amount of storage space available
Crime rates - you can find these on the Police.uk crime mapping website
Flood risk - for England and Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland
If the house suffers from subsidence
School catchment areas
Good transport links
Some of these you can’t really do anything about, but generally a home that’s been well maintained is likely to be valued at a higher price.
Here are some other things to watch out for:
Look out for any issues like damp or movement, and address these as soon as they arise
Get an electrician to check the wiring
Keep your boiler in good condition and make sure you regularly check for any leaks
If you’re in an area that has a high crime rate, consider installing or upgrading your home security
These elements also have an impact on your home insurance costs, as they reflect your level of risk and the likelihood of claiming on the policy.
Compare home insurance quotes
5. Look at local asking prices
Local asking prices can indicate how much you could get for your house, and also how many properties are changing hands on a regular basis.
Remember to use a few different sources to get the best idea of the local housing market.
6. Get an estate agent to value your house
You're going to get the most accurate valuation from an estate agent, so try and get several of these to get a good idea of the value.
How to add value to your house
There are many simple ways to add value to your home without needing to do any big renovations, including:
Tidying up and clearing clutter
Keeping up with regular maintenance
Redecorating with neutral colours
Deep cleaning your home
Improving the garden
Avoid low quality, quick fixes
General maintenance tasks like cleaning the exterior of the house and clearing the gutters can make a big difference.
It's good for your home insurance costs too, as insurers usually look favourably on a well-maintained house.
Having an electrical certificate can also be helpful to buyers, but it’s not mandatory. It provides reassurance that the electrics are working as they should be.
Avoid quick fixes. Surveyors are trained to see bad work and buyers are able to see if any unsightly cracks have been covered over.
Redecorating can help. If you notice any wallpaper that’s curling or chips in the paint it might be worth giving it all a freshen up.
You could also try decorating with neutral colours. It makes it easier for potential buyers to picture what they’d do to the house if it was theirs.
Don't overlook your garden either. Remove any weeds, rubble or anything that could seem undesirable.
Tidy any clutter and deep clean the house. For example:
- Shampoo the carpets
- Pressure wash your patio
- Remove any mould or mildew from the bathroom
Also remember to remove bin bags on viewing days, or if the estate agent is taking photos.
Before you host a viewing, air out the house. A tidy, airy home is much more appealing to buyers. If you’re moving, remember to read our moving house checklist for top tips.
Long-term ways to add value to your home
These require more money and, in some cases, planning permission. But the following home renovation ideas can be great for adding value:
A home extension
A new kitchen or bathroom
Increasing energy efficiency, for example adding solar panels
Sometimes you can increase the property value simply by applying for planning permission. It lets buyers know there’s potential to carry out work on the property.