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What to expect during your appraisal

If you’ve never had a Home Appraisal before, you may wonder exactly what is going to happen when one of our appraisers’ comes to your home and if there is anything you should be doing to prepare. 

Our appraisers inspect the outside of the house first. They will measure the entire house from the outside, as well as any out-buildings or separate garages. They will take pictures of every side of the house and the yard and pool (if present).

Certain exterior factors can affect the value of your home. For instance, a new roof or siding can trigger a quality adjustment. Having view or a location considered positive can trigger a location or view adjustment. On the other hand, a view overlooking something unsightly, or a poor location may work against you. 

The appraiser will inspect every room in the house and if there is a door in any room, the appraiser will open it to find out what is behind it. For certain loans, when there is an attic or basement crawl space, the appraiser will look inside. The appraiser will take pictures of every room in your house.

Appraisers must consider many factors during an appraisal. We’ll look at the condition of each room, for instance. Are the walls and floors in good shape or badly damaged? Are there signs of problems, like pooled water on a basement floor near the washer or stains on the ceilings indicating there may have been a roof leak? If so, We will ask the homeowner what caused them and if they have been repaired. 

The appraiser will also look at fixtures and upgrades in your house. Do you have new, high-quality appliances? Do you have new windows? Do you add new fixtures to the bathrooms recently? All of these things can add to the quality adjustment within the report.

Is there anything you can do to prepare for an appraiser’s visit? I recommend that if there are any problems in the house that will be easily visible that you fix them. For instance, if your roof is leaking, have the leak fixed and re-paint the ceiling. If a pipe is leaking and causing water damage to your floors, call a plumber to repair it and then fix the floor tiles that were warped. Telling the appraiser that you plan to fix them later will not help the appraisal. He or she has to base the appraisal on the condition of the house at the time of the visit.

Besides repairing anything that is obviously broken or damaged, it’s a very smart idea to make sure your home is clean and tidy. It will help to create a positive impression on your appraiser, who is evaluating the overall condition of the house.

It should take your appraiser anywhere from a day to several days to complete the report.