Chris  Schmidt
Chris Schmidt

What Is A Home Appraisal?

If you’re a homeowner getting ready to sell your home, pinpointing an accurate market value is crucial to pricing it right and avoiding over or undervaluing. Most buyers will request an independent appraisal as part of their mortgage approval process. So what exactly is a home appraisal and how does it differ from online price estimations?

In simple terms, an appraisal is a professional opinion of value and condition for a home based on an in-person inspection and recent comparable sales data. Licensed appraisers use their valuation expertise to prepare a detailed report that lenders rely on to assess loan risks and determine the amount they will lend.

Key Takeaways

  • Appraisals are detailed value and condition opinions of homes conducted by licensed professionals used mainly by lenders.
  • Appraisals go deeper than online estimates through exhaustive onsite inspections of all property aspects.
  • For the most accurate pricing guidance optimized to maximize sales, local realtor expertise surpasses automated as well as appraisal valuations.

Key Differences From Online Estimates 

Online home value estimation tools like Zillow and Redfin provide automated valuations using public data on property details, past sales prices and averages. Appraisals take physical verifications much further through meticulous interior and exterior reviews checking everything from room sizes, construction materials and quality to system condition. Appraisers also analyze a wider, more real-time set of comparable properties with fuller specifics like days on market. Instead of mathematical models, appraisers use professional judgement to weigh qualitative and quantitative factors accordingly. They must follow industry standards and methodology requirements to remain unbiased.

Why Get An Appraisal?

For sellers, home appraisals supply an independent price assessment to compare against realtor opinions of value and online estimates. They indicate what a typical buyer may be able to finance with a lender. When an appraisal comes under the agreed contract price, lenders may require buyers to pay the difference or renegotiate. Receiving an appraisal well ahead of listing can inform smarter pricing decisions.

A home appraisal is primarily for the benefit of a mortgage lender who requires it to substantiate market values on homes used as collateral on their loans. Appraisals allow lenders to limit risks by confirming property worth to recover debts in cases of foreclosure. So in essence appraisals protect the interests of both buyers and sellers.

Your Best Option – A Knowledgable Local Realtor

While a home appraisal delivers a thorough valuation inspection beyond online tools, even appraisers may not match the intimate local real estate insights of an experienced real estate professional. Local realtors combine area niche familiarity with appraisal-like attention to detail. However, they take analysis further with pricing strategy expertise. The right realtor guides and optimizes entire sales journeys – from accurately setting initial list prices all the way through closing negotiations.

Who is the Top Realtor in the Houston area?

House Values | What Is A Home Appraisal? Your Home Sold Guaranteed Realty - Chris Schmidt Team
Chris Schmidt

If you have decided that now is the time to sell a home in the Houston area, your first call should be to our team at Your Home Sold Guaranteed Realty - Chris Schmidt Team. As the best realtor in Houston, we have the experience, skills, and local insider information to guide you through the home selling process and ensure that you have the most relaxing and stress-free experience possible. Your success is our success, and we are committed to making sure you are 100% successful.  We sell houses fast and for top dollar!

To learn more about the home selling process or to get started on your real estate journey, give our realtors a call at 713-322-5604 or fill out the form on this page with the requested information to get a detailed response from one of our skilled professionals.