Adding Value

Adding Value

by Linda Nightingale

Whether buying or selling it is important to understand what gives value to a property. Linda Nightingale offers advice on understanding how property valuations are calculated.

One of the major factors is location. You only have to consider a home in the middle of Kensington to know how a tiny mews house, due to its prime position, can be highly desirable and highly valued! The same applies to homes here in the South East.

Some of the main criteria for establishing a property value can be a home’s proximity to good commuting facilities, schools, shops, stunning views or open countryside, depending on the buyers’ needs. When you study property prices in more detail you will often be able to pinpoint pockets of higher priced properties particularly where good schools are located which show a definite price spike against a similar property out of the catchment area.


If you have worked in the property industry for a number of years, you will recognise some areas which are noticeably more expensive for no apparent reason! Often this misnomer goes back many years to when one or two homes sold over the odds. Subsequently, the property market rises a certain percentage per year, which results in their enclave going up, pro rata, creating a property blip in the values.


Parking is an important issue. This can be quite a problem in some areas but having a garage or off – road parking can prove very appealing.

Plot size can have a bearing on value but with many people having extremely busy lives, a large plot is not necessarily the plus point it used to be. Whilst some may desire a garden big enough for a growing family, many prefer an easy to maintain patch of land with a large patio for ease of maintenance.

Homes with modern heating and insulation, clever gizmos, wi-fi and rapid broadband appeal to many.

If you want to gauge the value of your own home then do some homework and check on web sites and the windows of your local estate agents to see what is on the market in your area. If you live in a road of houses or apartments of a similar style and age it can be a quite simple exercise, although bear in mind the asking price is not necessarily the price that is achieved, but it will give you a good starting point. If you have added extensions, fitted new bathrooms or kitchens, then this needs to be factored into your valuation against a similar house which has not had any modernisation.

Hopefully your neighbours keep their houses fresh and smart on the outside so that they do not detract from the value of your own home when buyers come to view.


An estate agent will give you a valuation if you are considering marketing, and this will be based on their knowledge of the area, prices asked and prices achieved. Having input from a professional can be helpful. This is probably your most valuable investment so take time to ensure you market at the right price to secure a buyer but not so high that you cannot find a buyer.

Lastly, remember many of us can be influenced by the owner. If we like/ and or/ aspire to live the way they do, it could be a deciding factor to purchase, so ensure that you create and project an appealing persona. Good luck