Preparing Your Home for an Appraisal: What Appraisers Look for and How to Impress Them

If you’re thinking of selling your home or refinancing your mortgage, you’ll need to have your property appraised by a professional appraiser. The appraisal process can be nerve-wracking for many homeowners, but it doesn’t have to be. In this article, we’ll discuss what an appraiser looks for and provide tips on how to prep your home for an appraisal.

appraiser knocking

What Does an Appraiser Look For?

An appraiser’s job is to determine the fair market value of your home. To do this, they’ll consider a variety of factors, including:

Location:

Your home’s location is one of the most important factors in determining its value. Appraisers look at factors such as proximity to schools, shopping, and public transportation, as well as the desirability of the neighborhood.

Size and Layout:

The appraiser will measure your home and take note of the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, and other living spaces. They’ll also evaluate the layout of the home to determine its functionality and flow.

Condition:

The appraiser will evaluate the overall condition of your home, including the condition of the roof, foundation, and HVAC system. They’ll also take note of any needed repairs or renovations.

Upgrades and Amenities:

The appraiser will consider any upgrades or amenities your home has, such as a swimming pool, a renovated kitchen, or a finished basement. These upgrades can add value to your home.

Comparable Sales:

Finally, the appraiser will look at recent sales of similar homes in your area to determine your home’s value. This is called the “sales comparison approach” and is the most common method used by appraisers.

How to Prep Your Home for an Appraisal

Now that you know what an appraiser looks for, it’s time to prepare your home for the appraisal. Here are some tips to help you get ready:

Clean and Declutter:

Start by giving your home a thorough cleaning. This will make your home look more inviting and can help the appraiser see its full potential. Remove any clutter or personal items, such as family photos or knick-knacks, as these can be distracting.

Make Repairs:

If there are any needed repairs in your home, such as a leaky faucet or a cracked window, make sure to address these before the appraisal. The appraiser will take note of these repairs and may adjust the value of your home accordingly.

Enhance Curb Appeal:

The first impression of your home is important. Make sure your home’s exterior looks its best by mowing the lawn, trimming shrubs, and cleaning the gutters. If your home needs a fresh coat of paint, consider painting the exterior.

Complete Upgrades:

If you’re planning on making upgrades to your home, such as installing new flooring or countertops, consider completing these upgrades before the appraisal. These upgrades can add value to your home and may help you get a higher appraisal.

Provide Information:

Make sure to provide the appraiser with any information that may be helpful in valuing your home. This may include recent upgrades, a list of recent repairs, or information about your neighborhood.

TL;DR Getting your home appraised can be a nerve-wracking experience, but with a little preparation, you can help ensure that you get a fair appraisal. By understanding what an appraiser looks for and following the tips above, you can help ensure that your home is ready for its close-up.


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