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Home Appraisal Process

By Tarryn Caton

Whether you are buying or selling a property, you probably have a set price in mind. Unfortunately, your idea of a good price will most likely not be the same as what an agent considers a good price.
Appraising a home, especially in most large cities, is not an easy job. Properties that are just a couple of blocks from one another can differ greatly in price. A home’s proximity to public transit or schools, what floor an apartment is on and whether or not there is a view are all factors that can make a big difference in the price of two seemingly similar homes.

Key features that an agent will be interested in whilst appraising your home:

Property Size
A larger property is often more desirable to buyers because it gives them the possibility of expanding the home in the future. Another aspect related to property size is the number of rooms. A home with many bedrooms and bathrooms will have extra value since the number of people who can live in the home will be greater.

The Exterior
Before even entering your home, the agent will inspect the outside of your property. This involves looking at the structure of your home and inspecting the foundation, siding and roof to determine what materials they are made from and what condition they are in. The agent will also look for any damage to your home, such as leaks or cracks and defects that may have gone unnoticed when the house was built.

The Interior 
As with the exterior, the agent will consider the materials used in the construction of your home; their condition is very important. The main construction of your home, including the walls, flooring, windows and doors, will be carefully inspected to determine quality and identify any damage or defects. The lighting fixtures, kitchen appliances and plumbing are also evaluated during an appraisal; their condition will have an influence on the estimate.

Extra Features
Amenities that contribute to the comfort and safety of a home will greatly improve the appraised value. Agents will take into consideration all the extras that your home offers, such as air conditioning, fireplaces, security systems or smoke detectors. Outdoor amenities, such as a swimming pool, garage or gazebo could also lead to a higher appraisal.

Improvements
Improvements that you have made since you took ownership will influence the appraised value of your home. While inspecting the interior of your home, the agent will pay attention to upgrades that you have made to your kitchen and bathrooms especially. A new oven, stove, sink or bathtub is a big plus when determining your home’s value. Because the agent might not notice all the upgrades that you’ve made, it is important to provide him or her with a list of all the improvements before the appraisal starts.

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