6 Ways to Tell the Online Estimate of Your Home is Off
Sometimes, online appraisals can be quite close, but other times they are not even in the same ballpark. Unfortunately, when they are inaccurate, they can either have you feeling really discouraged or they can lead you to believe that you have a lot more equity than you do. Below are a few ways to tell if you should plan on being really surprised when you have it professionally appraised.
- Your Raleigh Neighborhood is Old – Understand that it is not the age of the home causing the inaccuracies, but the fact that public records associated with older neighborhoods are often inaccurate. Keep in mind that if homes in your area have been upgraded or altered these changes may not be known to online calculators.
- Extensive Customization – Was your 5-bedroom home once a 10-bedroom group home for kids or was an entire wing or level added on without permits? Extravagant changes like this influence the value significantly, but again, unless these changes were noted in public records they probably are not known to the calculator you happen to be using.
- Drastic Market Changes – Maybe the Raleigh market has not changed much in the past year, but what about before then? Alternately, maybe your neighborhood’s value has long been fairly consistent until recent years. Market changes affect value.
- Living On a Border – No, this does not mean the border to another country or even another state, but if your Raleigh neighborhood borders a very dissimilar neighborhood, your proximity can play a major role in the inaccuracy of an estimate.
- Your Home is Special – Of course, everyone’s home is special in its own way, but if you have really unique characteristics there is little chance they will be included in an online estimate. So, if you have installed an indoor pool and greenhouse or had a massive treehouse getaway built in the back, your estimate will likely be off.
- Low Turnover – Do you live in one of those Raleigh neighborhoods where no one ever leaves? If so, the low turnover rate will affect the accuracy of your estimate because there haven’t been many sales for an online calculator to compare your home to.
Online estimates are helpful in giving you a general idea of what price range you can expect to sell in, but they should never be solely relied on as they can be inaccurate, especially if any of the scenarios in this list apply to you.