8th April 2015
Thousands of home sellers are pricing their properties unrealistically as a new survey suggests that the gap between the average asking price and the average sold price is £74,000.
The latest research from online estate agent, eMoov.co.uk, revealed the average sold price in the UK is currently £207,000. However, the average asking price of properties listed on Rightmove, is £281,000 leaving a gap of £74,000 between what sellers think they should get and what they actually achieve.
The survey of 2,000 sellers in England and Wales found that 30% of those selling a property placed getting the highest price as the most important factor in the selling process. Meanwhile, 8% of those surveyed said that a quick sale was the most important factor.
The research also found that 56% of those surveyed would list their property at a price recommended by their agent, regardless of the market value of that property. 36% would list at a higher price than recommended by their agent and this figure rose to 41% in the capital, where 31% of Londoners stated getting the highest price was of the greatest importance. Less than 5% of those asked said that they would list lower than the price quoted by the agent.
eMoov says that many high street agents will overvalue a property on purpose to win the business and get the seller on their books. Motivated by making a percentage fee, eMoov says that some agents will then suggest the seller drops the price when the property fails to sell, as this drop will make a marginal difference to the profit they make.
Russell Quirk, founder of eMoov.co.uk, says: “Unfortunately it’s a common place practice in the high street sector. The agent is driven by a percentage fee so they will overprice a property to try their luck, win the business and increase their profit margins.
“Understandably the seller opts for the agent that claims they can get the highest price, as we are all motivated, to some extent, by money. Then as regular as clockwork the agent will ring them a few weeks down the line and “advise” on a lower asking price in order to sell.
“Yes, it is in part down to the seller. If someone has it in their head they should achieve x amount, they will list at this regardless of what advice they receive. However as the professional hired to aid the sale, the agent should always provide a realistic, truthful valuation based on what the market at the time dictates.”