Property price research methodology & summary of findings
In the spring of 2022, ESPC began researching whether there was a difference in the sale prices achieved for properties marketed through SPC member firms compared with the prices achieved by “independents” (non-members). This research was then completed in 2023. ESPC hired the help of market research company Progressive to validate this research.
ESPC have previously carried out similar research in 2017, 2018 and 2019.
For this research, the following methodology was used:
- ESPC recorded all properties listed for sale on Rightmove in relevant postcodes (i.e., those covered by ESPC) over a single calendar month – June 2022. This included properties registered late in the day on the 30th of June which were recorded as being live on the 1st of July. The postcodes covered Edinburgh and the surrounding regions (the Lothians, Dumfries and Galloway, Fife) – EH1-EH17, EH21, EH22, EH26, EH27, EH33, EH39, EH52, EH55, DG1, DG2, and KY12.
- ESPC collated Home Report valuations for each property listed and the date of the valuation – this enables a fair and consistent comparison for each property, whereas the market price would not (which tends to reflect an agreement made between the seller and the agent working on behalf of the seller).
- ESPC then recorded the final sale price of the properties using the Registers of Scotland (RoS) ScotLis site. This happened around eight months after the initial recording of all properties listed for sale – in January/February 2023 – due to the length of time it took for some property sales to go through settlement.
- ESPC produced a master spreadsheet including the following variables:
- geographic area of property,
- Rightmove ID,
- property address,
- date of listing on Rightmove,
- asking price,
- agent (and whether ESPC member or independent),
- sold price,
- date of sale.
- The spreadsheet was used to run a calculation to determine whether ESPC-affiliated selling agents were more likely than independent selling agents to achieve a higher HR-to-sale-value ratio. The calculation was as follows:
- Divide the total ScotLis sold price by the total HR valuation to determine the average percentage of HR valuation properties in key postcodes sold for.
- Filter results by ESPC-affiliated and independent agents to determine the difference between both groups.
- Progressive validated the spreadsheet and checked the calculations to confirm the percentage of Home Report valuation achieved by ESPC members and non-members.
In total, 516 properties were sold in the month of June across the key postcode areas covered by ESPC. Most of these (73%) were sold by ESPC-affiliated agents, the remainder (27%) by independents.
Properties generally sold over the Home Report valuation of the property (420 of the 516 properties sold – equivalent to 81% of properties).
Excluding properties that sold at same price as the Home Report valuation, one in 8 (13%) properties sold for less than they were valued. The average value of properties sold was £351,077.
The average for those that sold above the Home Report valuation was £365,744 compared with £282,366 for those that sold at or below the Home Report valuation, which suggests that properties selling above their Home Report valuation tended to be the high value properties.
The final calculations show that the percentage of the Home Report valuation achieved by ESPC-affiliated agents was 108% compared with 105% for independent agents, suggesting that the ‘advantage of ESPC’ remains in the market.