How to Find Out What Your Home Is Really Worth
Establishing a market value for your property is both a process requiring expertise and local market knowledge and a snapshot in time.
The real estate picture is fuzzy and is changing constantly, depending upon both national and international pressures on the market. Foreign currency levels, unexpected and wild weather events such as a hurricane in the Northeast in October or a damaging snow storm in November, political unrest abroad, labor unrest at home.. these all have trermendous effects on the housing market.
Add the roles of the lenders and their relationships with the Federal government, and you have the makings of very unsettling times!
TRAPS TO UNDERSTANDING THE TRUE VALUE OF YOUR HOME
Many websites give an evaluation which they themselves tell you can be inaccurate and done with "fuzzy math". Don't believe everything you read.
The value of your property will probably be negatively influenced if there are foreclosures or Real Estate Owned properties "REOs" in your neighborhood or general area.
The Emperor's New Clothes: Some real estate agents will give you an inflated price to get your listing. You may be flattered at this value, or even call for it yourself. Although done rather frequently in some areas, this practice does not do you any good; it only makes the listing go stale when the market rejects this price and may also result in a lower selling price than if you were realistic to begin with.
Believing that buyers in today's market want to fix your problems or deficiencies rather than you doing it before you list. You are reluctant to change or update because you "don't know someone else's taste." The truth: in this market, many buyers don't want to do anything but move in. A freshly painted kitchen that may not be their first color choice is preferable to a tired-looking room that presents a project the minute they step into it.
Thinking your outdated and tired appliances and amenities are "charming" and add value. They don't. They present themselves as deficiencies and unwanted projects to today's buyer.