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Massive down-valuations on properties creeping across Britain, say mortgage brokers

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Sat 04 Aug 2018

Massive down-valuations on properties creeping across Britain, say mortgage brokers

There have been some ‘massive down-valuations’ in recent weeks, say mortgage brokers.

In one case, two surveyors valued the same property for different lenders – with a £100,000 difference.

Trade title Mortgage Solutions asked three of its readers for their views.

Aaron Strutt, at Trinity Financial, said there have been some massive down-valuations mainly in London but increasingly across the country.

He said that brokers using the biggest lender do not know if a human or a computer will value a property.

He said surveyors are cautions, while Automated Valuation Models (AVMs) are relying on limited data.

Strutt also said it was “difficult to understand how a property can be down-valued without a valuer visiting the property”.

Joe Arnold, of Arnold & Baldwin Chartered Surveyors, said that some estate agents are over-valuing in order to win instructions. He also said that in Scotland, Home Reports have been very successful and the rest of the UK should introduce them.

He said: “That way every property would have a survey and valuation undertaken before it comes to the market.”

Greg Cunnington, of Foxtons’ brand Alexander Hall, said that there is a lack of consistency on valuations.

He said: “There seems to be an increase in an initial down valuation from one surveying firm, then, after a new application with another lender, a different surveyor visits the property for the new lender and values the property at a different figure. The difference here can be significant.

“We had an example last week of more than a £100,000 difference between two surveyors on the same property.”