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How Much Does a Home Appraisal Cost?
Do you call it a home or a house? Either way, a home or a house has market value and in some cases would be considered priceless by the owner. But outside of being priceless, what is the market value? And how much does it cost to find out?
When buying or selling your home, I always tell people that getting an appraisal is the lowest risk investment in the entire real estate investment process. And depending on the scenario, it’s also one of the quickest Return On Investment (ROI) that I’ve ever seen. When hiring a certified and professionally licensed appraiser, you’re not getting a random guess and you’re not getting some computer-generated online valuation number.
Real Estate Appraisals, what exactly are they?
While I could go on and on about what an appraisal is, I think it’s best to get straight to the point with what the Appraisal Institute and USPAP have to say.
“Standards for the appraisal profession are set forth in the Uniform Standards of Professional
Appraisal Practice (USPAP) developed by the Appraisal Standards Board of The Appraisal Foundation. USPAP specifies the procedures to be followed in developing and communicating an appraisal and the ethical rules for appraisal practice. As defined in USPAP, an appraisal is the act or process of developing an opinion of value. The valuation process is a systematic procedure the appraiser follows to answer a client’s question about real property value.”
Source: Appraisal Institute
On the most common FNMA 1004 form used primarily by lenders for mortgages on residential single-family homes, there are individual sections consisting of data that the appraiser researches and reports. And while most people will tell you that quality, condition, the size of the home, and bedroom and bath count are the most important factors, there is so much more that goes into researching and developing an opinion of the estimated market value.
Some other variables that appraisers research include but are not limited to
Remodeling, updates, upgrades, and/or renovations
Deferred maintenance and/or needed repairs
The Importance Of Appraisals
While there are a ton of resources (Realtors, online valuation services, etc.) that can give you their best guess as to what the estimated market value of a home might be, unless you have a “boots on the ground” certified real estate appraiser inspecting the home, you’re really not getting a “certified and true fair market value”.
Appraisals are also typically required to make sure the seller and buyer are negotiating with a “fair market value” and not an overpriced or underpriced value.
Mortgage companies use appraisals to make their lending decisions and whether or not the home being appraised will be a good investment. Some of the more common uses for private individuals include appraisals for pre-listing, divorce, estate/probate, and/or county tax assessor appeals.
How Much Does An Appraisal Cost?
While each appraiser sets their own appraisal fee, there is somewhat of a common range of an appraisal costs. For a full FNMA 1004 form single-family residential home, a range of $300–$500 can be expected.
Some other variables to consider with varying costs include but are not limited to the complexity of the assignment. From tract homes in suburban subdivisions to “rural residential” homes with sizeable acreage and various site improvements, the cost of an appraisal can and will vary.
The best thing to do is to do your due diligence and call your local appraiser to find out not only what they charge but also find out about their experience, their reviews, their competency.
I hope you have found this information helpful and if you’d like to order an appraisal today, simply click the link below.
This article is written based on my 29+ years as a South Carolina Real Estate Appraiser that covers the upstate area. This article is not meant to represent all appraisers from all over the United State and/or globally.