Home Appraisals: What Every Buyer Should Know

As a prospective homebuyer, understanding the intricacies of the home appraisal process is vital, especially if you're securing a loan to purchase your dream home. Here's a comprehensive guide to help you navigate the appraisal process in your homebuying journey.

Why Appraisals Matter

An appraisal is a professional appraiser’s estimated value of the property. It plays a significant role in determining your loan eligibility and the property's market value. The appraiser evaluates recent sales in the area, the property's condition, size, age, and other relevant factors to arrive at this value.

Negotiating Based on Appraisal

If the appraisal is lower than the agreed-upon price, your agent might suggest renegotiating with the seller. You can either make a lower offer based on the appraisal or negotiate other terms to bridge the gap. In a strong sellers' market, like we've had over recent years, sellers may stand firm, requiring you to pay the difference in cash.

What Appraisers Evaluate

During the appraisal, the appraiser conducts a thorough inspection, considering factors such as:

  • Overall condition and room count
  • Quality of construction and modernization
  • Square footage and peripheral properties like garages or carports
  • Contributions made, including repairs and additions prior to listing
  • Other attributes that enhance the property’s market value

Appraiser Credentials

Qualified appraisers possess state licenses or certifications obtained from accredited schools or real estate training institutions. Their expertise is invaluable, guiding buyers on the property’s true worth and aiding in informed decision-making.

Appraisal vs. Home Inspection: What's The Difference?

It’s crucial to differentiate between an appraisal and a home inspection. Appraisers focus on the property's value, while inspectors assess its structural integrity, perform termite checks, and evaluate hidden elements. It’s advisable to invest in a professional home inspection for a comprehensive understanding of the property’s condition.

Partnering with the Right Realtor®

When navigating the Columbus real estate market, entrust your homebuying journey to an experienced, full-time Realtor® like Rita Boswell. With her years of experience, Rita has built a network of trusted professionals including appraisers. If you're buying a home in the Columbus area, call or text us at 614-830-9767 to get started on your home-buying journey.

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