Both buyers and sellers should be informed of the home appraisal process to ensure that their home purchase or sale goes as smoothly as possible. A licensed, independent real estate appraiser gathers data about the house and surrounding property to provide an estimation of its current market value during the home appraisal process. Appraisals are usually ordered by the lender who is interested in the buyer's mortgage financing. The valuation is usually paid either in advance or at the time of closing by the homebuyer.

During the home valuation process, an appraiser visits the property and conducts a detailed inspection of both the exterior and interior. They take measurements of each room and the property's lot, as well as taking photos of the inside of the house.

How Home Appraisal Impacts Home Buying and Selling

All parties involved in the sale, including the lender, the seller, and the homebuyer, need a home appraisal.

The home appraisal process is crucial for the seller because it determines how much their home is worth (its market value) and whether they have correctly priced their home. If the seller overpriced the home, they'll almost certainly have to renegotiate with the buyer, either lowering the price to the appraised value or seeing if the buyer can cover the additional costs out of pocket. Much over, by selling it low, they might not be able to recover any of the equity they have built up while owning the property. It would also be a big help for the seller to have their realtor's opinion together with the appraiser's to get the full picture before making any decisions especially when it comes to their property's value. 

The buyer needs an appraisal because it ensures that the property has been valued reasonably and, preferably, appraises for at least the bid price they submitted to the seller. If the home appraisal comes in lower than the homebuyer's bid, they will have to renegotiate with the sellers or pay more out of pocket because the lender will not cover the whole sum.

Important Information to look at in the Home Appraisal Report

1.) Contract

The appraiser's analysis of the sales contract is stated in this section of the report. It also includes details about any sales concessions paid on behalf of the borrower, as well as the contract price and the date the contract was executed.

2.) Neighborhood

This section includes a rundown of the area, as well as housing market trends and neighborhood boundaries. The appraiser will tell you whether the value of other homes in the region is rising, retaining the same, or falling. 

3.) Improvements

The appraiser provides a general description of the property, including the base, exterior, and interior of the house's condition. The appraiser notes the house's square footage, any additional features of note, such as an overall explanation of the property's condition, whether any physical defects were noted, and whether the property conforms to the neighborhood in this section.

4.) Sales Comparison Approach

This is where the appraiser arrives at a valuation and substantiates the value of the house being appraised. 


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