5 Home Appraisal Do’s and Don’ts: What You Should Know Before Hiring an Appraiser

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On average, it takes between 65 to 93 days to sell from the point of listing to the point of closing.

One thing that can drag out this process is a bad appraisal. You may get a buyer to agree to a certain price point just to get a low appraisal rate that brings you back to the drawing board.

Make sure you know what appraisers look for and how to ensure a quick, positive appraisal process.

Read on for the five most important home appraisal do’s and don’ts.

1. Do Keep Track of Home Improvements

Home appraisers aren’t going to take your word for it when you say you spent $1,000 to upgrade the washer and dryer or that your kitchen remodel set you back thousands.

Make sure you have all of your financial statements and bills regarding any major home improvements you’ve made in the past year or two. This is the best way to prove the worth of your home’s amenities.

2. Do Spend Money on Deep Cleaning

While basic upkeep doesn’t necessarily create a direct return on investment, it may prevent a low appraisal. By the time your appraiser arrives, your house should be show-ready. In other words, declutter the countertops, organize the packing materials, and put away your dishes.

On top of that, clean the things you may typically overlook. This includes the carpets, windows, cabinets, and hardwood flooring.

3. Don’t Neglect the Yard

Your yard is the gateway to your home and a lawn overrun with weeds or thick with uncut grass creates a bad first impression.

You don’t need to plant dozens of rose bushes but you should make sure you’re mowed, weeded, trimmed, and presentable. Otherwise, you’re creating the illusion that the next homeowner is going to have a ton of work to do to make the property functional. A poorly maintained yard could mean a poorly maintained home.

4. Don’t Hover

Tensions can be high during an appraisal, especially if you’re not sure what the appraiser is looking at or don’t like what they have to say. The truth is, current homeowners tend to have an attachment to their home on top of the desire they have to sell at a high price. This can make appraisers uncomfortable.

Instead, allow your real estate agent to do the talking for you. They’ll know what’s worth fighting for and what isn’t.

5. Do Have a Plan for a Low Appraisal

Try as we might to prepare for an appraisal, it may not go the way we want it to. The reality is that one of the biggest new homeowner tips is to avoid paying a price that exceeds the appraisal.

If you have an agent, they may be able to file for what’s called Reconsiderations of Value. Make sure you discuss this possibility and what it entails with them before the appraiser comes.

Follow the Home Appraisal Do’s and Don’ts to Get the Best Price

Before your appraiser shows up, make sure you’re aware of the home appraisal do’s and don’ts. That way, you can avoid the avoidable and prepare for the unavoidable.

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