The other day I ran into a friend at the grocery store and after discussing life and family and all the other things that we all find as usual grocery store talk, she asked me an interesting question. She explained that she recently had been pretty stressed out because she had looked up the value of her home on one of the many available online home valuation sites, and to her surprise it reported that her home was worth far less than what she thought. Adding to the stress, there was a possibility her home could be on the market in the not too distant future, so she asked me if there was anything she could or should do.
My advice, to her relief, was simple: Don’t get stressed out. Those sites are driven by algorithms that don’t reflect reality on the ground in local real estate markets, and they can be wildly different than market reality. I could see the stress level drop as soon as I said it, but it also led to the next question - what is it you know as a real estate agent that these sites can’t pick up?
I explained to her that every situation is unique, but to understand where the primary difference usually occurs is the computer algorithm. Most web based valuation sites simply scan home sales in a geographic area and come to an average price per square foot. They then try to apply that metric as a one-size-fits-all approach to every home in the area, regardless of what the real market would value and appraisals would support. If it sounds a little too clinical - it is.
So what are these intangibles that the computers don’t get but a great real estate agent will see? For one, they don’t go inside a home. When value is simply calculated a value per square foot, the approach ignores that two homes of the exact same size may have entirely different interiors. One may be recently refurbished with beautiful new hardwood floors, new appliances, granite counter tops, and tile backsplash, while the other may have had a recent seller who hadn’t updated the home in 40 years. Buyers certainly place a value on move-in ready homes. Algorithms can’t see it.
Second, the computers have a hard time accounting for location. Using those same two homes with the exact square feet as an example, one may be located on a very busy street while the other is nestled just two blocks away in a quiet neighborhood or on a cul-de sac. Again, both are factors that a buyer would value.
Finally, external factors also impact value, such as what might be situated next to or nearby a home (good and bad) that a buyer would value or discount. So that beautiful park next to one, or the fish factory next to the other (Ok, I’m exaggerating to make a point), all add up to value.
The point is, of course, if you’d like to get a true sense of your home’s value to properly plan for your next big homeowner decision, contact a real estate agent and ask for a free market assessment of your home.
About Kelly Crowley
Kelly Crowley is a Licensed Real Estate agent for Keller Williams Realty.
Kelly has lifelong ties to the area and a keen understanding of the marketplace through her personal history and extensive knowledge of the varied communities she serves. Before choosing a career in real estate, Kelly spent 15 years as an advertising executive for many prominent advertising agencies representing Fortune 500 companies. Drawing upon these experiences and her expert knowledge of the area, Kelly was able to make a seamless transition to a real estate career.
Today, Kelly invests her passion for the area in serving her clients with the utmost integrity, honesty and expert guidance in their real estate endeavors. When you’re seeking an agent who will put your goals first, call on Kelly Crowley. firstname.lastname@example.org 734.274.0707
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About Kelly Crowley : Kelly Crowley is a Licensed Real Estate agent for Keller Williams Realty. Kelly has lifelong ties to the area and a keen understanding of the marketplace through her personal history and extensive knowledge of the varied communities she serves.