If you’re thinking of selling your house, it can be a tricky matter to figure out your home’s real world value. The real estate market fluctuates so much that your house may not be worth as much as you paid for it, or it could be worth more. You’ll want to get the most out of your sale, so it’s important to start with an accurate appraisal.
One way to start is by looking into recent house sales in your neighborhood, or similar areas, to get an idea of what people are paying. The last six to twelve months in sales can give you a good estimate of current trends in the market, and looking back even further can show you whether your neighborhood’s property values are rising, falling, or remaining relatively steady.
After coming to am estimated value based on sales trends, start looking for specifics in your house that could change its value relative to others in the area. If your house has more square footage or a larger surrounding lot than other homes in the area, its value increases relative to the neighborhood. Any recent home improvements also tend to boost a house’s value. A recently remodeled kitchen or bathroom could add thousands to your potential sale.
There are other aspects of your home and property that can detract from its worth. An outdoor structure such as a garage, shed, or any additions to the house may actually cause value to fall. If a structure is not well kept and in need of significant work, it will certainly not interest buyers. Even a structure that is in top condition could bring your price down due to the maintenance that future owners will have to invest in it. The average buyer prefers a blank canvas, so to speak.
Landscape work, gardening, and other embellishments to a house’s exterior will certainly make it more attractive to buyers, and could help sell the house more quickly, but probably won’t change the actual value very much. The most beautiful rose bush in the world won’t be able to raise the price of a rotten house. Your home’s value will be highly affected by structural condition. In addition to architecture and support, doors, windows, plumbing and electricity must all be in good working condition with no issues. Future owners may want to repaint the walls to suit their taste, but nobody wants to deal with leaks, bad wiring, or rotting wood. Even the most affordable condos in Fort Lauderdale won’t sell if they need surgery.
You may not be interested in investing too much in your house. After a certain point any house’s value will plateau, and some buyers may not even be interested in the nicest house on the block if the neighborhood doesn’t suit them. Surrounding houses can be the most critical element to your home’s worth, and this aspect is unfortunately out of your control for the most part. However, by reading the markets and keeping up on key maintenance issues, you can accurately determine your house’s value and keep it competitive.