Step 8 to Buying a Home: The Appraisal

November 19, 2023

Congratulations! If you’ve gotten this far it means time for the appraisal.

Your mortgage lender will order the appraisal. Generally the cost is somewhere between $350 – $500 and is paid by you prior to the home being appraised.  It is considered part of your closing costs.  You’ll want to keep that in mind when negotiating with the seller.

Once you have paid for the appraisal and the lender orders it, the appraiser schedules a time with the seller and their Realtor.  It generally takes a week for the appraiser to get out to the home, and another week to finalize their report. It is not uncommon for the report to be received only a couple of weeks before the scheduled closing date.

Neither you or your Realtor attend the appraisal.  However, the seller and their Realtor may be present during the appraisal.

Once the appraiser completes their report, you and your lender and you will receive a copy. Your mortgage lender will let you know whether the property appraised for the purchase price or not.

  • If the property appraised for the purchase price, you will proceed as planned.
  • If the property appraised for more than the purchase price, congratulations!
    You’re getting a great deal and your home is worth more than you’re paying for it.
    You’ll have instant equity the day you move in!
  • If the property appraised for less than the purchase price, we have a problem. The
    bank will only give you a loan for the appraised value. We need to go back to the
    sellers and try to renegotiate the price down to the appraised price. If an
    agreement isn’t reached then you can choose to walk away or you can choose to come
    up with additional funds to cover the difference between the appraised price and
    the contract price (this is in addition to the down  payment and closing costs
    already figured into your loan).

To avoid potential appraisal issues, your Realtor should always prepare an analysis to determine the approximate fair market value of any home you’re interested in, before submitting an offer.  Be sure to talk with your Realtor and lender if you have questions.

Have questions? Call 614-208-9794 or email Helping you Buy Sell Love Columbus.