What is My Home Worth? [How to Estimate House Value]

When selling your home one of the most important decisions you have to make is the listing price. Too high a price will result in few viewings and even fewer offers, too low and you may turn off potential buyers or give off warning signs that there’s something wrong with the house – even if there isn’t.

So, finding out what your home is worth is crucial, but just how do you do it?

What is my home worth? Contributing Factors

First, let’s look at the factors that influence the value of your home:

  • Neighborhood and location: Where your home is located makes a big difference to house value. A house in a sought-after area of a thriving town or city is going to be worth more than the same house in a rundown neighborhood. A house buyer can improve a property in many ways, but they can’t transport it elsewhere.
  • The age of your home: The age of your home is probably not as important as location or condition but does have a bearing on its value. Generally, newer houses will achieve higher selling prices than older homes. This is perhaps because newer houses tend to be larger and have more amenities than older properties and also newer homes are likely to be in better condition. However, if your house is old enough to have period features and some historical significance then that will boost the value considerably.
  • Its condition: This is another biggie. The better the condition, the more money you can ask for. Generally, house buyers are not looking for a project, they want somewhere they can move into right away. If your house is freshly decorated and has a modern kitchen and bathroom it will fare on the market much better than a house that is a little tired or in need of extensive work.
  • The size: Bigger houses attract bigger prices, especially in areas where space is at a premium.
  • Desirable amenities: Having amenities beyond the norm – like a swimming pool, tennis court, or large garage – will add to the value.
  • Upgrades and improvements: The value of your home will be added to by recent improvements. This is where you can recoup some of the costs of a new kitchen, HVAC, or bathroom.

How to Find Out What Your House is Worth

Now you’ve got a greater understanding of what may be with or against you as you move forward, here are the primary ways you can find out how much your home is worth:

Use an online calculator

An online valuation tool is a great way to start the process. Websites such as Zillow, Pennymac, and others require minimal information to give you a guide as to your home’s worth. Plus they are usually free.

The downside to these tools is that they are not very precise. They can’t take into account your property’s upgrades and repairs, for instance. So, while they are a good starting point, you need to take their results with a grain of salt.

Ask a realtor

A good local realtor is a better bet for suggesting the market value of your home than an online calculator. Often, they use a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) to determine the value.

The CMA process involves studying similar properties that have recently sold in your locality. They will look at homes that are alike in terms of size, age, style, type (condo, single-family home, etc.), and of course, location. A CMA should enable them to give you not just the price you should list but also how long your house might take to sell, and if the selling price was higher or lower than the original list price.

A CMA is not infallible but it should be better than an online service. The realtor should be able to use their experience to fine-tune the price suggested by the CMA and that will give you the most advantageous price for your initial listing.

Hire a professional appraiser

Normally a home buyer has to get a home appraisal done to fulfill their lender’s requirements. After all, the mortgage company wants to know its money is safe.

Although an appraisal is not mandatory for a seller, you may decide to employ an appraiser to reassure yourself that your home is worth what you are asking, or to help you determine what price to ask.

An appraiser is impartial and has an extremely good knowledge of the local market. They’ll visit the property and compare it with similar homes recently sold in the area. They will go into detail looking at things like the type of foundation, whether repairs are needed, the condition of the fabric of the building, signs of damage, and so on. They often use Fannie Mae’s Uniform Residential Appraisal Report. A glance at this should help you understand the process.

If you decide an appraisal is for you, you must ensure the one you choose has the qualifications required by the Appraisal Qualifications Board (AQB). The national average cost for an appraisal is between $150 and $350, depending on the size of your home and your location.

Get a no-obligation best cash offer from a house buying company like us

Approaching a house-buying company is another option – particularly if your home requires repair, looks a little shabby or you just want to sell it quickly.

The process is easy and begins with a simple online form. After this, a representative will call you with a few more detailed questions, and then soon we will come back to you with a cash offer. Our offer is based on the value of similar properties that have sold nearby and adjusted to take account of the cost of repairs, renovations, and upgrades to bring your home to the same condition.

Selling doesn’t have to be stressful

Setting the correct list price is of the utmost importance when selling your house, so you need to work out what it’s worth in today’s market. But that, like the rest of the house selling process, takes time and money. If your home needs some work that you don’t have the time, energy, or cash for or simply want to relocate quickly you should consider selling to a house-buying company.

If you live in Massachusetts and want to sell your house quickly, reach out to Pavel Buys Houses. We make the whole selling process painless and fast and let you get on with your life sooner. If you want to take the stress out of selling your home, whatever its condition, call us at 781-309-7085 or click here to find just how easy the process can be.

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