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What is a home appraisal?

A home appraisal is a document that demonstrates an estimate of the property’s current fair market value. Fair market value is the price a property would sell under normal market conditions. The home appraisal is an independent evaluation.

What is BC assessment?

Property owners receive a property assessment notice notifying them of their property’s fair market value as of July 1 the past year.

What are home appraisals for?

An appraisal may be needed when engaging in processes such as buying, selling or refinancing. Lenders may often ask for a home appraisal value in order to receive a professional, current, accurate and unbiased evaluation. Appraisals can additionally be performed for presale properties when they reach completion.

What are the associated costs with a home appraisal?

An appraisal would cost on average between $300-$600 for a detached house. However, the cost varies depending on the price of the home and the complexity surrounding the appraisal itself.

Who pays for a home appraisal?

Generally, the borrower would pay for the home appraisal costs. The appraisal would eventually go to the lender and not the buyer itself. Hence, the appraiser sees the lender as their client and not the buyer. An important point to note is that an appraisal is not always mandatory but common for buyers who are placing 20% down. Depending on the mortgage brokerage company, appraisal costs may be waived or added to the documentation fee.

What is the difference between a home appraisal and a current market assessment?

A home appraisal provides an estimate of the property’s current fair market value based on factors such as age, location, current condition and more. Meanwhile, the current market assessment (CMA) is based on what current buyers are prepared to pay for the property. CMA may also assist with finding out the asking price of a property by methods such as supply and demand. Home appraisal and current market assessment (CMA) are hence not interchangeable terms.

Some tips when preparing for a home appraisal:

  1. Create a list featuring all updates no matter how minor
  2. Tidy up the interior and exterior of the property
  3. Consider investing in small updates such as a fresh coat of paint or updated light fixtures
  4. Create a list of comparable properties depending on recent market activity
  5. Enhance curb appeal
  6. Focus on creating a great overall first impression


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