Is Zoopla’s Property Valuation Tool Accurate?

Written by Mathew McCorry

If you read my property blog now, that’ll be the end of it. I will not look for you, I will not pursue you. But if you don’t, I will look for you, I will find you and I will make you read it.

If you’re wanting to find out how much your house is worth then there’s a good chance you may have come across Zoopla’s house valuation tool which can tell you how much your house is worth. It’s easy to use, you simply type your postcode in, select your house number & it will tell you what they estimate your property value to be.

The question you might be left with is, is Zoopla’s valuation accurate? And the short answer is no. You can use the Zoopla valuation as a rough estimate but it really should be taken with a pinch of salt. There are a few issues with the Zoopla valuation that can often mean you are provided with an inaccurate which include:

  1. Condition Isn’t Taken into Account
  2. Had a new bathroom installed, upgraded your kitchen or put a lot of work into the painting and decorating? This won’t be taken into account by Zoopla. It doesn’t have data on the condition of the property itself, it’s based on past sales information, recent house sales in the area & the local market.

  3. Incorrect Details
  4. There is sometimes the possibility of having the details recorded incorrectly, make sure you check the number of bedrooms and bathrooms match your expectations. It can often be wrong as well if a home or a property you are looking at has had an extension that has added an additional bedroom or an extra toilet, this will often add value to your home which may not be taken into account.

  5. Different House Prices on the Street
  6. If your street has a variety of different kinds of properties with different styles & build types it can be tricky for Zoopla to provide you with an accurate estimate. Taking for example if a street has a 5-bedroom large detached new build home and an older 3-bedroom detached home further down the road the values will be wildly different and therefore may be hard to determine through an automated tool.

  7. Comparable(s)
  8. One of the factors that Zoopla uses is recently sold houses in the area that are close in specification to your own. If you live on a road where the last sale was in 2010 then the tool is going to struggle for accuracy. There could be comparables a few streets away which have had a more recent sale, however it’s impossible for the online tools to determine the local knowledge required to know the difference in house prices street by street without relying on the recent sale information.

How Should You Get A House Valuation?

If you’re looking at selling your home then you should always look at getting a more accurate valuation than using the Zoopla house valuation tool not to say that you shouldn’t use that as a rough guide. Here is how you should look to value your home:

  1. Use an estate agent
  2. Get a few estate agents round to your property to provide their opinion on what you should market your property at. They have the expert local knowledge and should be aware of how well the market is moving, but be aware that they may have their own interests at heart, if they provide you with a larger value than you expect then you may be more inclined to go with them for them to later talk you into reducing the listed price after a few weeks if you’ve had no interest.

  3. Research Rightmove & Zoopla
  4. Do your own research, you know what you’ve done in the house & the condition of the property better than anybody else. Look around your postcode area and try find similar properties that are for sale, assess the condition & try and match it to yours to give yourself an idea of the value. You should also look at “actual sold prices” of properties which you can do using Rightmove’s tool.

  5. Find out how much your home’s value may have changed
  6. Nationwide have a great house price calculator that can calculate the growth of house prices in your area in regards to the overall property market. If it has been a while since you bought your property this can be a good tool to us, for example a house bought in Yorkshire for £100,000 in 1980 will now be worth approximately £740,773 at the time of this blog.

  7. Look at demand in the area
  8. How quickly are houses selling in your area? Is it a buyers or a sellers’ market is something that you need to take into account. If you live in a fast selling area you may be able to put your asking price higher than what your home is worth because it will be in demand, however if you are in an area which moves slowly then you may want to drop the price a bit below what you are looking for in order to get a quicker sale. Here’s a great tool where you can find the average sale time by postcode.

  9. Use a chartered surveyor
  10. The best way undoubtably to get a valuation on your home is to use a chartered surveyor, but this can cost up to £800, dependant on the survey you get done. They will give you an accurate valuation of your property as they come assess the condition and are knowledgeable in the local area, but this isn’t something you would typically look to do when selling due to the costs involved.

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