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Real Estate News
The Home Appraisal Process: What to Expect as a Buyer
The home appraisal process is just a formality when buying real estate, right? You’ve found the house you love and put in a good offer, and it was accepted! It’s time to break out the Dom Pérignon White Gold? Sorry, not yet.
If you’ve applied for a mortgage, your home-to-be still has to undergo a comprehensive appraisal of its worth—and an unfavorable home appraisal can kill a real estate deal. Yikes! It can be a nerve-racking ordeal, but it’s actually good for you. Allow us to demystify the process.
Appraisals estimate a home’s value with fresh eyes
Just because you and the sellers have agreed on a price doesn’t mean it’s a done deal—your lender needs to be on board, too. After all, it’s the lender’s real estate investment as well. To get a mortgage, you’ll need a home appraisal because the home serves as collateral for your lender. If for some reason you end up unable to make your mortgage payments, the lender will have to foreclose on your home, then sell the property to recoup its costs. So your mortgage lender will have to know the value of your home before handing over that large chunk of change.
While the home appraisal process is somewhat similar to getting comps—as you did to determine a fair price—the appraiser delves in deeper to determine the home’s exact value.
An appraiser will investigate the condition, the square footage, location, and any additions or renovations. From there, he or she will appraise the home and determine its value.