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What’s An Appraisal and What to Expect

Whether you’re buying a new home or refinancing a current residence, the lender will ask for an appraisal. Banks require this information to move forward with any loan funding. In the past, appraisals were quick glances at a property by certified professionals. Today’s marketplace is a lot more critical. If you want to learn more about Oxford real estate, getting to know the appraisal world will help you understand what makes a fair evaluation.

Defining the Appraisal Process

Appraising a property involves retaining a professional who understands the Oxford real estate market. Although lenders may suggest a certain appraisal company for the work, these certified professionals are actually third-party affiliates. They should have no influences by the lender or buyer.

Appraisers look at the exterior and interior of the home with the owners present. They require access to the entire property. If you cannot offer that flexibility, they’ll need to return at a later date. Each visit is subject to a charge for the appraiser’s time and travel.

Features Being Examined

Appraisers aren’t interested in the home’s decor. They look at square footage, structural details and major improvements. The sofas may be brand-new, but a remodeled kitchen adds real value to the appraisal. Be ready to point out any improvements that might be overlooked by the appraiser, such as a new roof or finished attic.

The home’s value might suffer if there are visible damages to the structure. Cracked foundations, water-damaged walls and other features will impact the final value.

The Neighborhood Factor

Your home might shine like a diamond to the appraiser, but they don’t just evaluate the structure as an isolated property. They must take the neighborhood’s features into consideration. Recent sales, crime rates and school-district quality all play a role in your final property value.

Because there’s a lot of research that goes into the appraisal process, you won’t know a value until several weeks after the visit. The appraiser needs time to pull this information together.

Examining the Results

Both the lender and buyer receive a copy of the appraisal. Value summaries and the logic behind the decision are all documented for the lending process. Banks use these numbers as limitations on loan amounts. In most cases, you cannot borrow more than 80 percent of a home’s value. This loan strategy protects both parties involved with the financial transaction.

To learn more about property purchases, contact Kay Hightower today.

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