Whether you are refinancing, taking out a home equity loan, listing your house for sale, or simply trying to figure out if you are paying way too much in taxes, there are a few methods you can use to determine your Raleigh home’s value. Keep in mind that value is a snapshot in time. It is constantly changing, so your home’s value today could be significantly higher or lower a year from now.
1. Use an Automatic Valuation Model
Generally called an AVM, this is simply the formal name for those estimator calculators you often see on websites belonging to lenders and real estate listing services. These calculators scan data from private and public databases, and use this information to help determine an estimate. Most will also ask some basic questions about your home, regarding year built, square footage, and number of bedrooms. This is a good place to start, but since the calculator can’t actually see your home this number should only be thought of as a starting point.
2. Evaluate a Competitive Market Analysis (CMA)
A CMA is put together by a real estate agent. The agent will use a multiple listing service to find inventory and sales data in your area. It will also consider major improvements done on your home, as well as local changes that could affect value, such as a new company opening and creating hundreds of jobs or an increase in violent crimes.
3. Check out the Competition
You don’t want to ever waste a seller’s time requesting a private showing of a house just to compare it to your home. However, if there are some open houses in your area it certainly doesn’t hurt to stop in.
4. Browse Online
There is no shortage of real estate-related websites online to view current listings. It is not a bad idea to pick a few newly listed homes similar to your house to keep your eye on. You want to see how quickly they sell at or near their listed price, and watch for how long it takes before the price gets reduced.
5. Get an Appraisal
A licensed professional will be able to give you the most accurate figure based on your actual home and the current market. Appraisals include comparing comparable sites and factoring in results from on-site inspections.
You can get a general idea of your Raleigh home’s worth on your own using active listings and estimator calculators. However, when you need a more accurate figure, a CMA and a licensed professional will be helpful.