There are many times when you may need to know how much your home is really worth. This may include if you decide to sell your home, borrow money against its equity, refinance your mortgage, purchase homeowner’s insurance or conduct estate planning. In any of these cases, you will need to know how much your home is worth at the current time.
The key to finding out the true value to your home is to use several sources when conducting your research. Additionally, keep in mind that your property could very well be worth more or even less than when you initially purchased it. With all of that said, the following useful tips can help you calculate how much your home is worth today.
Talk with a Few Agents
The first thing you should do is speak with a few real estate agents. Even if you are not wanting to sell your home, most agents will be willing to give you a comparable market analysis, or CMA, should you ever decide to sell in the future. This CMA is based mainly on the prices of comparable homes in the area. It can give you a general idea of what your home is worth.
Visit Some Local Open Houses
Visiting some local open houses is a great way to see other homes for sale in your neighborhood and talk with real estate agents. During your visits, you can find out about the current real estate market in your area. However, always keep in mind that the price of one home does not necessarily mean your house is worth just as much. Furthermore, some homes may be underpriced or overpriced for what they are really worth.
Invest in a Professional Appraisal of Your Home Sale Owner
Another excellent way to determine the value of your home is to invest in a professional appraisal. While obtaining a CMA is usually free, professional appraisals will cost you a bit of cash. However, the few hundred dollars you will spend will be well-worth the investment, especially if you are preparing to make a major financial decision that involves your house.
An appraiser determines the true value of your home through on-site inspections, recent sales of similar homes in the area and various other data such as your home’s size, age and recent improvements. After your home is evaluated by an appraiser, you will receive a report that gives a full description of your home, its amenities and any other criteria used to determine the final value.
The Internet is brimming with useful information, and there are many Web sites that offer valuations for free or a small fee. Any of these resources can tell you how much homes are selling for in your area. Be sure to also check out the sites for real estate companies in your area, as they can give you specific information about your neighborhood.
Investigate Changing Prices
As with any other product, prices on homes are subject to fluctuations. This is due to many different factors, such as shifts in the economy or a decline in the population of the area. Organizations such as the National Association of Realtors can help you track home prices.
Using all of the above resources, you should be able to determine a reasonable value for your home. You will most likely get various figures; however, when choosing a suitable price, make sure that you do not choose one that is too large. Underestimating the value of your home sale owner will leave you with equity that you can make use of later, while overestimating will do nothing more than leave you stretched thin financially.
Trae Mindiola is the co-owner of Republic Property Tax in Houston, TX. Republic Property Tax’s property tax appeals services include professional representation in Harris County.