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How Much Can I Sell My House For?

Written by Reviewed by Graham Norwood

19th Feb 2020 (Last updated on 19th Jun 2020) 9 minute read

As a general rule, ask your estate agent for a recommended asking price. Make sure you compare this with nearby similar properties on sale at the same time. If you wish, get an independent valuer to advise you as well, although you will have to pay a fee. Remember that sellers usually get between 95% and 99% of their asking price.

Deciding how much your house is worth is one of the most challenging aspects of selling your home. Ultimately, every homeowner will want to sell their home for more than what they paid for.   

In this guide Compare My Move will talk you through your options when deciding on a price and how you can optimise your home’s selling potential, ensuring you’re prepared to take the first steps towards selling your home.

This article will cover the following:
  1. Pricing Your Home: The Basics
  2. Create a Selling Strategy
  3. Should You Get a Professional’s Opinion?
  4. How to Prepare for Buyer Negotiations
  5. Factor in the Cost of Selling Your House
  6. What Happens If Your House Value is Less Than You Expected
  7. Save on Your Property Sale with Compare My Move

Pricing Your Home: The Basics

Before you do anything else, there are a few basic steps you can take to help you accurately set the price of your home. 

Research - To have a good idea of how much to sell your property for, you will need to do some research on local house prices.

Asking Price vs Selling Price - Ensure you take note of what similar homes were previously listed and the price they actually sold for. Compare these prices and review how many price cuts it took to get a sale. Were they overpriced to begin with? 

Ask the Neighbours - If you have a good relationship with your neighbours, why not ask about house prices in the area and see if they have any advice or rough estimates that you can use as a basis for pricing your own home. 

Online Tools - Sites like Zoopla have great tools for researching house prices and will allow you to look back on how much your house sold for in the past. Have a look at what similar properties in your area have sold for in the last 12 months to give you an idea of what buyers are willing to pay.

Like for Like - For a more accurate estimate, make sure that when you’re doing your research, the homes you’re using as a base are roughly the same size and age as your property. 

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Create a Selling Strategy

As part of the process of pricing your home, you will need to work with your chosen estate agentto devise a selling strategy. If you're selling a house with a help to buy equity loan, read our guide to find out more.

Your selling strategy should include factors such as how quickly you want to sell your home, your ideal selling price, your lowest selling price, if there is any added value to the home and if you can afford to wait for a higher offer. 

  • Make sure you price your home with negotiations in mind. What is the lowest you will accept and what is the price you’d like to realistically sell your home for? Also think about how much you may need for a deposit if you're selling before buying a new home.
  • Careful planning is required and if you want to sell your home quickly, you may need to consider accepting a slightly lower offer. 
  • Try to emotionally detach yourself from your home. It can be easy to get caught up in fond memories, the money spent on the home and how much you envisioned selling it for. 
  • Finally, try to create a back-up plan for if your house doesn't sell. Do not panic if it takes a while to get an offer, nothing happens instantly. But it's still good to be prepared so you have a first step to take if the worst should happen. 

Should You Get a Professional’s Opinion?

You should consider getting a home valuation from an expert to act as a guideline for pricing your property. Local information such as local schools, public transport, noise and crime levels will all come into play when setting a price for your property. 

Experts often have access to data and information that could be essential to determining the value of homes in your area. Ultimately it is up to you to set the price for your home, but most High Street estate agents offer realistic pricing. Remember, if the property does not sell they do not receive commission, so it is in their interests to be realistic on pricing.

1. Local estate agents

Estate agents local to the area will have a better knowledge of house values and what properties have sold for recently. Be aware, they may suggest an unrealistic price to entice you to use their services, but you should be able to spot this by researching the asking prices of similar properties on sale nearby.

It is also worth looking around and getting several opinions. A study by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy found that 75% of sellers obtained a valuation from more than one estate agent.

2. Online Estate agents

All estate agents offer a free valuation and the best estate agents will be able to provide evidence of similar properties selling at their suggested valuation price. 

If the estate agent is not local, they will rely on house sale figures from sources such as the Land Registry -  which will not always give an accurate reflection of house prices in the area. 

3. Estimates

Sites such as Zoopla and Rightmove can provide an estimated guide price based on analysis of property data in the UK.

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How to Prepare for Buyer Negotiations

Almost all buyers will presume there is room for negotiation of the listed price so be aware that a potential buyer may submit a considerably lower offer. Property website Zoopla found that the average home sells for 3.9% less than the asking price. 

Buyers may also offer lower again after their initial offer is accepted. Nearly one in five (18%) of buyers reduce their offer, usually as a result of an issue flagged in the property survey report or a lower than expected mortgage lender’s valuation.

Negotiating is par for the course when selling your home, but there are some ways you can prepare to ensure you get the right price for your property. 

  • Take advice from your estate agent whether the market conditions allow you to set a higher asking price in the expectation that offers will be lower.
  • Remember that offers are not legally binding until contracts are exchanged and you do not have to accept any of them.
  • Ask yourself how quickly you want to sell and if you can afford to wait for a better offer.
  • Naturally, nobody wants to lose money on their initial investment, but there is also the risk of the property not selling if it is priced too high.
  • Be aware that the longer your house is on the market, the less likely you are to get the best price for it. It may also cause prospective buyers to question whether there is something wrong with the house.
  • On the other hand, if you are looking to sell quickly, you will need to be prepared to accept a lower offer.
  • Note that if you are selling with an estate agent you will not be negotiating directly with the buyer. This will be done via the estate agent who will negotiate on your behalf.

Factor in the Cost of Selling Your House

When pricing your home, you must also consider the costs involved in selling a house:

1. Estate agent fees

High-street estate agents generally charge between 1% to 2.5% of the final property on average. Their role is to primarily market your property to potential buyers and provide guided viewings of the property. 

They will also mediate between you the buyers during negotiations to ensure you get the right price for your home.

2. Conveyancing 

The average conveyancing fee for selling a home is around £1,000. These are the legal fees associated with selling your home. (This figure is based on the average UK home prices £232,797 and includes VAT at 20%). 

Compare My Move can save you time and effort finding a conveyancer, connecting you with us to 5 licensed conveyancers or conveyancing solicitors in your area.  

3. EPC

Energy Performance Certificates (EPC) cost between £60 and £120 depending on your local assessor's price. 

The EPC will reveal the energy efficiency rating for your property and whether it can be improved, based on the type of property and the local area. Every house on the property market must be on the EPC register. 

It may be worth factoring in these costs when pricing your home as you may want to account for them in the overall price.

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What Happens If Your House Value is Less Than You Expected

Following your research and discussions with estate agents, you may find that your house is valued lower than you expect. 

Although this can be disappointing, there are a number of ways you can increase the value of your home. You may have already undertaken renovations so make sure you factor this is in when pricing your property.

Having work done to your home can have the potential to add substantial value to your home, allowing you to set the price of the property higher. 

  • Fixing major structural issues
  • A new or updated kitchen
  • Updating or replacing the bathroom
  • Adding an extension 
  • Obtaining planning permission
  • Adding a Conservatory
  • Converting the loft
  • Converting the basement or garage
  • Making improvements to the garden such as adding decking

Consult with your agent before undertaking expensive and lengthy work, such as an extension. It is possible to ‘over develop’ a property - for example, by giving it a large number of bedrooms while it has only a small garden. A good agent will advise on what renovations will produce the best returns when you sell.

You should also think carefully about any work that may require a party wall agreement as this can increase the cost of the renovations. If you sell your home for less than your asking price, you may end up losing money due to these added fees.

Without a doubt, selling your home will be one of the biggest financial decisions you will make in your lifetime. However, if you follow the tips in this guide, the process will feel more organised and straightforward, preparing you for selling your property.

Save on Your Property Sale with Compare My Move

Compare My Move will help you at every stage of your house sale or purchase. From comparing conveyancers, hiring a chartered surveyor and helping you find a removal company, we’ll be there for you. Compare your move with us and save up to 70% on the costs along the way.

Adele MacGregor

Having written for PerformanceIN, WalesOnline, Grazia Magazine and The Olive Press, Adele now writes advice articles for home movers, first-time buyers and house sellers alike.

Graham Norwood

Reviewed by Graham Norwood

Property Journalist and Editor,

With over 15 years of experience in residential property journalism, Graham is currently the editor for both Estate Agent Today and Letting Agent Today.