How to get an honest (free) valuation from an estate agent

Most agents want nothing more than to tell the truth and give the right advice, but…

To get the truth out of them, many estate agents need to be given permission to be brutally honest.

If you want the absolute best result from your sale, you need absolute truth from estate agents.

And the easy way to get it is to have a quick discussion with estate agents before they offer their thoughts on what they think your home is worth.

Here’s the dialogue to use:

You: “Before we talk about price, I want you to understand that I don’t want you to tell me what you think I want to hear.

I want you to tell me the truth.

I need to know what you honestly think I can sell this home for in today’s market and how you came to that conclusion.

I want you to know, I’m not basing my choice of agent on who tells me the highest price.

I’ll be basing it on who can justify their pricing advice and prove it’s the right advice.”

The 3 magic questions

In addition to the dialogue above, also make use of the 3 magic questions below.

Again, take the lead and ask these question before any estate agent has had a chance to tell you what they think your home is worth.

Q 1. “What other properties will the likely buyer of my home also give serious consideration to?”

Q 2. “How does my home compare to these properties in terms of price and attractiveness?”

Q 3. “Where do we need to price my home against the competition to make mine stand out as the best value for money?”

Key takeaways:

A verbal free valuation from an estate agent is simply an informal opinion of value. The agent is under no obligation to give an accurate (or honest) opinion.

All pricing advice from estate agents should be considered incorrect until backed up with facts and evidence of current and historic sales.

Never tell estate agents what you think your house is worth (most will be too scared to disagree with you).

Make it clear you want brutal honesty on all matters relating to your sale.

A good estate agent will then give it to you.

A great estate agent will have given it regardless.

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