Getting an Appraisal – Worth Every Penny

In today’s changing markets, it can be a challenge to know how much a home you’re thinking about purchasing is really worth. Getting a proper home appraisal is worth every penny to help you make wise investment and sale decisions.

Money well spent

Home appraisals, performed by a professionally licensed appraiser, can indicate a home’s true value. This is essential to know if you’re buying, selling or refinancing your home. Depending upon what part of Canada you live in and the size of the home, an appraisal can typically range from $300 to $500.

If you’re looking to buy a home, an appraisal provides the reassurance that you’re not overpaying for a home. Additionally, your lender wants reassurance that the property will sell for at least the amount of money they’re lending you. Most lenders require that the home be reviewed by one of their approved appraisers before issuing you a mortgage.

If you’re looking to sell your home, understanding its market value will help you determine your pricing strategy so you get the most money possible in the sale without it languishing on the market for months.

If you’re refinancing, a home appraisal is beneficial as it gives you a more accurate assessment of what your home is worth on the market today and increases the amount of mortgage a lender will offer you.

The appraisal process

When appraisers look at a property, they assess the total value of the home and any other permanent structures, along with the land of which the house is built. They inspect the property inside and out, and may also look at city records and recent reports from local real estate listing services to research the value of comparable homes in the area.

A real estate agent can give you a comparative market analysis (CMA) to determine a realistic asking price. Experienced agents often come very close to an appraisal price with their CMAs, but a professional appraiser’s report is the only valuation report a bank will consider when deciding whether or not to lend you money.

An inspection is not an appraisal

A home inspection provides you with information on the condition of the home and what needs to be fixed. An experienced home inspector can point out any potential problems that could turn into costly nightmares in the future.

Remember, an appraisal does not take the place of a home inspection, just as a home inspection does not take the place of an appraisal. An experienced appraiser will likely make note of any obvious issues, but they won’t test your heat and air, check the chimney, or determine if your plumbing is up to code. That’s the job of the inspector.

For more information about home appraisals, contact me here.

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