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What’s the best way to learn your home’s value?

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Dear Phyllis,

We have lived in our home for fifteen years and don’t have plans to sell anytime soon. We visit neighborhood open houses and feel as if we have a fairly accurate idea of our home’s value. As our home is the biggest portion of our net worth and will be a major asset once we retire, we would like to have a clearer idea of its worth. Although, in the mail, we often receive free evaluation offers from Realtors, I hate to waste anyone’s time if we aren’t ready to make a move. What’s the best way to learn your home’s value?


Dear Gretel,

As a Realtor I appreciate you valuing our time. There are two common ways homeowners guesstimate their home’s value:

1) Online market evaluation sites are usually within a 10% range, but sometimes off by more than than 20%. These can be fun, but they don’t take into account your home’s amenities, condition and location versus the other homes they are comparing yours to.

2) You could spend about $500 and hire an appraiser. But the nature of the appraisal is to look at history (recent sold comparable properties). The other issue with an appraisal is that they typically haven’t been inside the homes they are comparing yours to.

You want to learn what your home will sell for in today’s market – and that’s the real value. Full time real estate agents look at homes weekly on Broker Caravan day. We also show homes to potential home buyers. Weekly, we are in and out of your neighbor’s homes. Realtors are your best source to learn what your home will sell for.

Realtors are in the relationship building business, that’s how we obtain clients. Sooner or later you will want to sell your home, why not establish a relationship with a real estate agent now? They can provide you with the value of your home in today’s market, and down the line they can assist you by answering any questions you have concerning resale and specific repairs and improvements. When you are ready to make your move you will have a relationship with a trusted real estate agent.

Related Post: How accurate are online home evaluations


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