- We have recently seen the reintroduction of physical property viewings in England, reopening the property market which had been on pause since lockdown began.
However, this isn’t the end of digital services in the property industry, especially when it comes to getting a house valuation…
Introducing video valuations
In the weeks following the introduction of tight lockdown measures, some estate agents are offering virtual viewings and valuations and valuations to keep the property market afloat. Using platforms such as Zoom or Facetime to tour the property, property owners can go through with a virtual house valuation without having to travel to the location.
While in-person property visits are allowed by following social distancing rules, there is still a restriction on the number of viewings allowed per day. And as agents have a backlog of valuation appointments made before and during lockdown, virtual alternatives will help keep the market running.
“They’ve been really successful for us,” said Steve Brown, branch manager of Winkworth Blackheath. “In the last two-and-a-half weeks we’ve done 27, in a few different ways.”
How many valuations should I get?
Typically, most homeowners receive 2-5 valuations before their home is listed for sale. It will come down to how long the property has been on the market, whether the seller is familiar with recent local sales prices and whether their expectations are in line with those of buyers in our current climate.
A desktop mortgage is a mortgage approval based on automated house valuation and can vary from lender to lender. Some will offer a mortgage restricted to 75-85 per cent loan-to-value. The mortgage valuer will look at the property market value group, as well as recent sales in the area and other factors.
Desktop valuations aren’t always available if the property has too many variables that cannot be determined without a home visit. Common property types that may not be eligible include new-builds, flats, and properties in unique or up-and-coming areas.
“Re-allowing surveyors to enter homes as long as a distance of two metres is maintained means that physical valuations can get going again,” says Miles Robinson, head of mortgages at online broker Trussle.
“Some lenders, such as HSBC and Virgin Money, have already confirmed that valuations are starting to be booked in.”
For the latest developments during and after lockdown, get in touch with Joules Estate Agents today.