Here is an abbreviated list of the things to know:
- What the appraisal report includes: Your appraisal will include details about the house, a description of the neighborhood and side-by-side comparisons of similar properties. It will also contain an evaluation of the area’s real estate market and notations of major problems with the property.
- How an appraisal report is developed: Appraisals are opinions of value, and residential real estate appraisals compare your home with similar homes that have sold.
- How to get a copy of your appraisal: You paid for an appraisal when you bought your house. You can request it from your lender — it’s your right under federal law.
- What to look for in the report before you sell: Focus on items that had a negative adjustment — they might be a good checklist for elements to update or remodel.
- Why an appraisal before your home hits the market might be wise: The fresh appraisal will help accurately price the home and ensure it will eventually appraise for your asking price at the time of the sale.
Submitted by Susan Hofflander