Before Buying

What Potential Home Buyers Should Know About Appraisals Before Writing an Offer.

When you’re buying a home, you want to make certain you get as they say “the most bang for your buck,” the highest value for your dollar. How do you know if you’re paying Fair Market Value for your dream home? Simple, by hiring a certified property appraiser who will appraise the current value of your dream home before you put pen to paper.

By hiring a professional property appraiser on your own consensus, you are getting an unbiased expert opinion of the home's worth based on today’s ever changing, real estate market. Your home appraisal will determine whether the home's contract price is appropriate given the home's condition, location, and features. An appraisal could save you from potentially making an over-valued purchase.

A property's appraised value is influenced by recent sales of similar properties known as comparables and by current market trends. The home's amenities, the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, neighborhood / community are some key factors in determining the home's value. A skilled appraiser will do a complete visual inspection of the interior and exterior of the home you are wanting to purchase and will make note of any conditions that adversely affect the property's value. The appraiser will then provide you with a complete analysis and report about the property's value based on his or her professional opinion of value.

Having the home of your dreams appraised before you sign a binding legal contract not only helps you avoid overpaying for the home, it could also be used as a negotiating tool if the list price of the home is higher than the appraised value. Keep in mind, by getting a pre-purchase appraisal before buying a home, you'll be able to gauge how a lender may value the property, which is important if you are considering obtaining a mortgage. Sure, you can pay more for a property if you would like to, but a lender is unlikely lend $350,000 if the property appraises for $325,000. Second, you'll have some hard facts and figures about the nature of the market (supply and demand) in the area you are considering buying in. If you are satisfied with the appraised value and decide to write an offer, the report can be used to reinforce or support your offer to purchase. The appraisal report can be attached to the offer to purchase or counter offer when presented to the seller if needed.

Before you sign on the dotted line to purchase any property, an independent appraisal by a certified real estate appraiser is key to knowing the current market value of the home you’re interested in purchasing. An appraisal is an important part of the home buying process that establishes a property’s market value. You may be reluctant to order an appraisal before buying because of the expense. However, if you take into consideration the cost factor versus the overall price of the property it clearly makes sense to get an independent valuation from a licensed property appraiser. Caveat Emptor is a Latin term that means “let the buyer beware.” similar to the phrase “sold as is” this term means that the buyer assumes the risk that a product may fail to meet expectations or have defects.

Not all appraisals are created equal but a good one is invaluable. Don’t write an offer to buy a property without ordering an appraisal from us first. Let’s make sure you’re paying the fair market value.

The law surrounding residential real estate appraisals is complicated and the facts of each case are unique. This article provides a brief, general introduction to the topic.