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    Disagree With a Valuation? Here's What to Do

    By The reallymoving Team Updated 26th Jun, 2024

    Reviewed by Emily Smith

    Getting a valuation that isn’t as high as you expected can be shock, but what can you do about it?

    Disagree With a Valuation? Here's What to Do

    If you get a property valuation that comes back lower than you expected, this is called a ‘down valuation’. If this happens, your options depend on the role you’re playing in the transaction as well as the type of valuation that you got. 

    Mortgage lender’s valuation 

    A mortgage valuation is a relatively quick check that the property you want to buy is worth what you say it is. They’ll want to know that the amount they’re lending to you will be completely covered by the value of the property. 

    What is down valuing?

    Down valuing happens when the mortgage surveyor values a property to be worth less than what the property is being sold for.

    It can be a real pain if your mortgage valuation comes back lower than the price you’ve already agreed to pay, as it means that the lenders are not happy to give you the amount you need to buy the property. 

    Luckily, there are a few options. 

    Appeal 

    Some mortgage lenders will give you the opportunity to appeal the valuation. If you decide to do this, you’ll need evidence of why you disagree with their figure – for example, records of how much similar properties in the area have sold for recently. 

    Find the extra cash 

    If the difference between the expected and actual property value is relatively small, then you might be able to bridge the gap using savings, or perhaps a loan from a family member. 

    Renegotiate the sale 

    You could try going back to the seller with the mortgage valuation and using it to renegotiate. 

    How successful this is will depend on the circumstances. If the property has been on the market a while or if the seller is looking for a quick sale, they might be prepared to accept a lower offer to make sure the sale goes through as planned.

    If they know they wouldn’t have a problem finding another buyer, or if they need to sell at the asking price in order to afford their next property, it’s less likely to work. 

    Find another lender 

    Although this may be better than the alternative, it’s not a particularly desirable option because it will inevitably lead to a delay in the sale and will also cost you more. 

    You’ll need to go through the process of applying for a mortgage all over again, including potentially paying fees. If you’re not able to do that and none of the other solutions are viable options for you, you might have no choice but to abandon the transaction and find another property. 

    If you do decide to do this, remember that any delay to a sale will carry an increased risk of the seller backing out and finding another buyer. 

    How can I avoid an unexpectedly low mortgage valuation? 

    The best thing you can do is get a RICS valuation before arranging your mortgage. If you’re getting a survey done (which we’d always recommend you do) then you could get a valuation done as part of that. 

    While valuations are, by nature, a little subjective, getting a professional assessment of the property before approaching any mortgage lenders is a good idea.

    You can use that valuation to negotiate a price with the seller, and then hopefully the mortgage lender’s valuation won’t be too different. 

    Prospective buyer’s valuation 

    If you’re selling your property a prospective buyer might get a valuation as part of their survey. If they get a lower figure and reduce their offer as a result, it can be frustrating. 

    Can I appeal a valuation from a survey?

    Challenging professional valuations can be tricky, because they are carried out by experts who are specially trained to consider all characteristics of a property and location before giving their verdict.

    As a result, the report is likely to be very thorough. If you do think the valuer has overlooked an important part of the property or given undue attention to negative aspects, you could consider challenging it. However, this is often difficult in practice because the buyer isn’t obliged to show you the contents of the report.

    If you are considering objecting to the valuation, you should first consider where you got your initial valuation figure from. 

    Estate agent’s valuations can be inflated to encourage you to employ them to sell your property. As a result, you’re unlikely to be able to use an estate agent’s valuation to argue against a valuation from a Chartered Surveyor. 

    However, if you’ve got a valuation from a surveyor but your seller gets a lower one, you might have a bit more luck. This is because valuations from surveyors are generally more reliable. 

    What can I do to avoid an unexpectedly low RICS valuation? 

    Again, your best bet is to get the initial valuation from a RICS registered surveyor instead of from an estate agent. They are qualified to give accurate valuations that take all parts of the property into account.

    If you’ve got a valuation from a trained professional, it’s less likely that your prospective buyer will get a figure that is substantially different. 

    Valuations will always carry an element of subjectivity, so the best thing you can do is get your figure from a trained Chartered Surveyor who will value the property based purely on the characteristics and features of the property.

    Remortgaging

    Another scenario where you may need a valuation is when remortgaging your property.

    What happens if your home is down valued when remortgaging?

    If the mortgage lenders valuation finds that your home is worth less than you think it can be frustrating. Your mortgage lender might reconsider the amount that you can borrow, and it can also impact you Loan to Value ratio.

    You will still have options and should talk to your mortgage lender about what these are. You could explore using another mortgage lender or getting a second opinion on the valuation.

    Disagreeing with a valuation FAQs

    Can you get a second opinion on house valuation?

    Yes, if you believe that the house valuation isn’t accurate you can look for a second opinion.

    It’s recommended to get a valuation from a surveyor. A valuation as part of a survey is an in depth and accurate assessment of the property.

    Can you challenge a house valuation?

    Some mortgage lenders will allow you to appeal the house valuation if you believe that it is wrong.

    It is trickier to appeal a valuation from a surveyor as these are usually very thorough and accurate.

    What if I disagree with RICS valuation?

    It can be hard to challenge a RICS valuation as these are carried out by experts who follow strict requirements and regulations.

    If you have evidence to suggest the valuation is incorrect then you will need to appeal this with RICS. Difference in valuation will not be considered unless it’s above the courts’ accepted tolerance in valuation (usually up to 15%).

    How accurate are surveyors' valuations?

    Surveyors’ valuations are usually fair and accurate. This is because surveyors provide an in depth assessment of multiple aspects of the property including its condition and its value on the open market.

    Can a mortgage be refused after valuation?

    A mortgage can be refused after a valuation if the lender believes that their investment will be at risk.

    A mortgage lender might also offer a smaller loan than what was originally offered if it is found the property isn’t worth as much as expected.

    If your mortgage is declined, you may still be able to mortgage the property with another lender or accept a smaller loan.


    Updated April 2024

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