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What Is A House Worth?
A home is ultimately worth what someone is willing to pay for it. Everything else beyond that is an estimate of value. There are two main ways to estimate a property's value. The first is an appraisal and the second is a comparative market analysis. It is recommended to do both and then to compare & contrast.
A certified appraiser performs an appraisal. This is an estimate of the value of a home at a given point in time. When an appraiser estimates your home's value, they base in on several items. They take into account square footage, construction quality, the year the house was built, the design and floor plan, the neighborhood, availability of transportation, local shopping, schools, lot size, topography, view, landscaping, and any additions or updates. The cost of an appraisal averages about $300 and it usually only takes about a half an hour to an hour to complete. If you are unaware of whom to use, you can ask your mortgage lender, they usually have one to two appraisers that they work with regularly. Remember that an appraisal is only valid for one year, so if it takes you over a year to sell, or you refinance within a year, you need another appraisal done. This ensures that the appraisals remain accurate.