Finding Market Value Before You Talk To An Agent

competitive-market-analysisWhat is your home worth today? With home prices rising and falling sharply over the last few years, it’s no wonder that this question can be something of a head-scratcher. If you’re watching the nightly news programs lately, you might assume that your home value has dropped to a negative number, that it’s almost impossible to sell your home at any price given the current market conditions. But that is wrong. Millions and millions of homes will be sold this year and yours can be one of them.

The classic line in real estate is that there are really three prices for every home – what the seller would love to get, what the buyer would love to pay, and finally, what the home will eventually sell for. Assuming there is no underlying motivation to sell quickly – something causing you duress which forces a sale to occur faster than normal like a divorce, a medical problem, or a foreclosure – you should be able to reasonably estimate the value of your home.

How?

Competitive Market Analysis
The fastest way, of course, is to invite us to provide you with a complimentary competitive market analysis (CMA). Patrick Parker Realty Agents have access to a huge database of active and sold listings which we can draw from to provide a very accurate picture of your home’s value.

But what if you don’t want to talk to an agent quite yet? What if you want to estimate your own home’s value?

There is good news – you can still do it yourself using a few simple techniques.

Research public records
Every sale which occurs in your city, town, or neighborhood is recorded with a local government entity, typically the county recorder’s office. Because these are public records, anyone can access this information, and many now provide this information free of charge online. Take the time to review as many sales as possible.

Call a title company
Title companies often work with private owners and agents to manage real estate closings or to ensure title for the new home buyer at closing (or both). Because of this they are often happy to provide you with comparable sales for homes in your neighborhood which can be helpful in determining market value.

Be a detective
If you have keen eye for real estate signs in your neighborhood you can often watch as new listings hit the market, go pending, and eventually close escrow. By visiting real estate web sites such as Trulia or Zillow, talking to neighbors, or even visiting with the new buyers themselves, you can often learn what the home was listed for and eventually sold for.

Use the Internet
As a potential home seller you may wish to register at Trulia or Zillow to begin monitoring the activity in your specific market. These sites will automatically update you on new listings, price changes, and statistics that can be invaluable when identifying the right price for your property.

Pay for an unbiased opinion
One way to estimate the value of your home is to hire an appraiser to do a “pre-appraisal”. A pre-appraisal is done before a home buyer makes an offer. Appraisers have a duty to provide unbiased, objective opinions based on the latest market data. While this may cost a few hundred dollars, it can often provide invaluable information when you’re beginning to think about pricing and marketing your home.

Armed with all of this information you should be able to accurately estimate, within just a few hundred dollars, what your home will eventually sell for, right? Wrong. All of these techniques will provide you with a range of values, not a specific amount. Why? A home’s value is constantly changing, moving up, down, and sideways depending on a myriad of influencers. Your hard work should act as guide post, not a destination point.

Patrick Parker Realty experts are here to help you assess your property’s value. ¬†When you’re ready, call us at 732.455.5252 to schedule a complimentary Competitive Market Analysis or contact us online.