Five tips to get the best appraisal of your home

Five tips to get the best appraisal of your home

Having your house appraised can be an anxiety producing experience. Most appraisals occur as part of a property sale or the refinancing of a mortgage. Much depends on the appraisal and the financial stakes are high. Here are five tips to help you get the best appraisal of your home.

#1 Spruce up the place

Get your home in tiptop condition. I know this is a tough one because everybody is so busy. But take the time to clear away the cobwebs and put things away. If there are any minor maintenance items – now’s the time to take care of them. Maybe the storm door is broken or there’s a patched area of wall that could use some paint. This is a good time to take care of those things. Condition really matters. Do what you can so your house will make a good impression on the appraiser.

#2 Does the appraiser know the neighborhood?

Make certain that the appraiser is familiar with your neighborhood. When he calls to schedule the appointment, ask about his knowledge of the neighborhood you live in. Is he familiar with the area and has he appraised in the area before? If he hasn’t, that doesn’t preclude him from doing the appraisal, but this will give him some extra incentive to investigate the area and become thoroughly familiar with it because you asked the question.

#3 List the home’s key features

Make a list of your home’s features and give it to the appraiser before he begins the inspection. These features will make more of an impression as he goes through the property. Imagine that you are a prospective buyer of the house. Consider the things that appeal to you about the property. These could be things like the size of the kitchen, the efficiency of the heating and cooling system, or the low maintenance cost of the property.

#4 Upgrades and maintenance

Provide a list of recent upgrades and maintenance items to the real estate appraiser. This would include anything done during the past three to five years. For example, you’ve updated the kitchen, or perhaps maintenance items like a new roof or replacement of the water heater. Again, this is a list that should be provided before the appraiser begins the tour of your house.

#5 Real estate sales

Lastly, if you are aware of any recent sales, pending sales, or listings near your home you should bring these to the attention of the appraiser. Wait until the inspection is complete before giving these to the appraiser. Too much information at the beginning may distract the appraiser during the inspection process. You can be sure the appraiser will do his own research and he may or may not use the information you provided. The main benefit of providing a list of sales is because sometimes a closing is so recent in time that it might not show up in the records that the appraiser researches. Do these five things and they will help insure that you will get the best appraisal of your home. By the way, be sure to check out  the accompanying video and you’ll discover an additional important tip #6 that is absolutely essential to a successful home appraisal.