When it's finally time to sell a home, perhaps one of the most important first steps is ensuring you get an accurate estimate of the property's value! That means obtaining a fair appraisal for your clients—but before that, you’ll want to prepare for one.
Without an honest assessment of its value, any home on the Novi real estate market will be listed for less than its actual worth. Fortunately, the Mark Z. Real Estate Experts are here to break down how appraisals work and offer some tips for optimizing the process!
What Is an Appraisal?
An appraisal, in simple terms, is a written estimate indicating the market-rate for your client's home. Appraisals are conducted by an objective third-party, who performs an honest assessment of a home based on specific criteria. They will also use market data to ascertain the value of similar homes near Novi when examining the property. This ensures you are obtaining accuracy for your clients, and it also gives you the edge when it comes to helping them negotiate.
What Do Appraisers Look At?
You’re probably wondering, "What exactly does an appraiser will look for when examining a home?" Several factors go into the appraisal process:
- The condition of the home: Are there any apparent problems with the home structurally or internally? Does the house seem to be in good condition? These are a couple of questions they consider during any formal review.
- The square footage: Obviously, the larger a home is, the more value it has. However, the number of bedrooms and bathrooms play an essential role in the appraisal value, as well. For example: if a house has 2,500 square feet but only one and a half baths, then although it’s significant in terms of sheer size, the lack of bathrooms may bring the appraisal amount down considerably.
- Available appliances: Are they gas or electric? What type of HVAC equipment is integrated into the home? How new are the appliances?
- Any structural upgrades and amenities: Are there upgrades, new equipment, or remodeled areas to the home? If so, this will help increase the overall value, even if the added amenities are outside. For example, if you have a pool, gazebo, or a beautiful garden, then the value increases.
- Architectural features: Fireplaces, hot tubs, and so on are also on the hot list for making your appraisal go up in value.
- Home functionality: The appraiser will take into consideration how functional your home is in terms of its layout. For example, is the laundry room on the main floor, making it convenient for the homeowner? Are the bathrooms conveniently located? Does the master bedroom have a bath? These and other factors will boost the value of a home.
- The exterior: What materials are used? Is the home created with bricks, vinyl siding, wood, or a combination of two or more of these? The appearance of the exterior, in addition to its construction, will be considered.
- The yard: How well is the property maintained? Are the bushes, trees, and grass trimmed and neat? Are there bare spots in the lawn? All of these things will be factored into the appraisal value for a property in Novi.
What Happens During an Appraisal?
During the inspection, the certified appraiser will walk through your home looking at everything to see what kind of condition it's in; they may also take pictures and ask questions if they’re not sure about something. The appraiser will measure the exterior of your home and check out your yard—they may even drive around the neighborhood, because the quality of the community in Novi can affect the appraisal, too!
The entire process—despite its importance—should only take about 15 minutes: you can let the appraiser know about any upgrades you’ve had completed during this time.
Tips for Making the Most of an Appraisal
To make the most out of an appraiser's visit, make sure your client's home is ready before the appointed time. You can take steps to prepare a home for the big day:
- First, make sure all necessary maintenance or repairs have been accounted for. If your clients had planned on any upgrades, improvements, or repairs, make sure they're done before the appraisal—not afterward.
- Clean the house, put away any clutter—both inside and out—and use air freshener or candles to neutralize any odors.
- Ensure the interior of the home is painted in neutral colors, since that enhances the move-in appeal and is easier for people to match.
- Finally, keep pets and children away from the appraiser. This ensures he or she isn’t distracted or hindered during the job.
Getting the most out of your appraisal is a breeze with these tips, and Mark Z. is ready to help you navigate through the process!
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