Appraisal 101

What’s it worth?

Get the facts about your home appraisal.

An important but oftentimes overlooked part of the home loan process is the appraisal. Here’s what you need to know.

What is a home appraisal?

A home appraisal is a certified professional’s written opinion of a home’s value. The appraisal determines the value of the home and whether the contract price is reasonable if this is a home purchase.

Why is an appraisal necessary?

When you borrow money from a home lender, the home you are refinancing or purchasing is used as collateral. An appraisal is ordered by the lender to help ensure the home is worth at least as much as the amount borrowed.

What’s included in an appraisal?

An appraisal includes detailed information about a property, including the home’s condition, its location and any unique features of the property. Photographs of the home are included as part of the appraisal report, along with recent selling prices of comparable homes in the area.

Why is the appraised value important?

The appraised value of a home is used to help determine the loan-to-value ratio of a mortgage (how much you are borrowing as compared to how much the home is worth). In most cases, the appraised value is in line with the sales price and mortgage amount.

An appraised value can also impact the mortgage rate that is offered and is required when obtaining homeowner’s insurance. The lender will share the details of your appraisal with you.

A Home Loan Specialist can answer any questions you have about the home financing process.