The valuer, in arriving at an opinion of value, must try and judge what prices sellers generally would seek and do obtain and what
choice buyers would make. The valuer must therefore assess what is, or has recently been, available in the market place and make comparisons between them. In this respect, the valuer acts no differently from any other person making a valuation; for example, a person valuing a motor car would assess the number and types of cars available and the prices currently being obtained and so arrive at the price which, in their opinion, would attract a buyer for the motor car in question. The key to the accuracy of the opinion is the knowledge of the prices that have been obtained recently for similar goods with which comparison can be made. This evidence of comparable transactions in the property market is termed “comparables” and, as will be seen, the availability and the nature of comparables provide the basis of whatever method of valuation is adopted and the availability and nature of those comparables may determine the choice of the method itself.