Home appraisals are used for loan applications, general assessment of property value for sale or settlements, such as divorces or estates, taxes and insurance, among other purposes. Residential real estate appraisals apply to homes or condos, and commercial appraisals are available for income-producing multiunit buildings, commercial properties or land. If your appraisal is for a loan or refinance from a federally regulated lender, you’ll need a state-certified appraiser. In general, the appraiser assesses the house or condo, determines its values, and provides a detailed report to the client. Several factors affect the cost of an appraisal.
Depending on the geographic location of the home and the appraiser, the cost of a home appraisal can vary. Cost variances account for regional prices, cost of living and other factors such as industry competition. Keep in mind that your house may be appraised at a higher price for a refinance than it is for a sale. Real estate firm Encore Properties has had many clients who are surprised when the same home that was valued at $200,000 the previous year for a refinance is appraised at $170,000 after a presale home appraisal.
Many appraisers offer a flat rate for their services. They visit your house, measure, take into account the number of bathrooms and bedrooms, determine square footage, consider renovations you have done, and the current condition of your house. They also run data based on similar homes that have been sold in your area along with other variables. CNS Appraisals in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, charges $320 on average for a house or condo. According to realtors at Encore Properties in Fuquay Varina, North Carolina, a typical appraisal in Wake County, North Carolina, costs $425.
Many appraisers charge an additional fee for homes that exceed a certain size, such as 3,500 square feet. This fee covers the extra time and work that a larger house size creates for the appraisal.
If your home has had unique additions made, has undergone extensive renovations or remodeling, or has had a large amount of repair work done, your appraisal may cost more than the usual flat rate. An appraiser will need to pull data on similar homes sold or on the market to create comparative analysis. When you have out-of-the-ordinary components, that research takes more time and costs more money.
Properties that have additional structures on them, such as in-law units, barns or freestanding workspaces, can incur additional fees to a flat rate model. For example, some appraisers charge a set fee, such as $50, per additional building or the fee could be based on the square footage of each additional building.
- Don’t automatically assume that a loan appraisal will determine your selling price.