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The Importance of the Appraisal | Southwest Florida Real Estate

When you’re going to sell a home (or buy a home, for that matter), the appraisal is very important. In Southwest Florida real estate, the appraisal can be a big influence on the value of your home, especially in a tight, competitive selling process.

A high home appraisal can give your home a serious lift and can majorly impact how well your home sells. A low home appraisal, on the other hand, can have the opposite effect – it can jeopardize your chances at getting full value for your home.

For example, let’s say you’re selling a piece of Southwest Florida real estate and have an initial asking price of $300,000 for your condo. Let’s say the appraiser reviews your property and assesses its value at $290,000. Suddenly, a buyer has a much lower figure than the one you’re asking for to base his or her offer on, which means they’re going to start at the $290,000 mark, not the $300,000 level.

As you can imagine, you’ll potentially lose $10,000 in this example right off the bat, before the first offer is even made.

An appraisal usually involves three parts: an inspection of the home itself; a comparative market analysis; and the final appraisal report with the results. There’s not much you can do in the short term to improve your market report, since you’re being compared to other homes in the area.

But, you can do a few things to impact your appraisal before you list. For starters, ask for a local appraiser, someone who understands the market well in your local area. Out-of-area appraisers can devalue homes based on a lack of first-hand knowledge of the local market.

You can also execute a few minor renovation projects, particularly in the kitchen and bathroom. Swapping out your appliances for stainless-steel versions helps, as does things outside of the home like enclosing a garage or landscaping your home.

Also, be sure to document everything you’ve done to improve the home. This gives your appraiser a good idea of how much value you put into the home.

Finally, while appraisers don’t always take the condition of your home into account – such as having dishes in the sink or trash that needs to be taken out – it doesn’t hurt to eliminate clutter and make the home look spotless, just like you would during an open house or showing.