Today I’m explaining the difference between an online evaluation and an in-person market analysis of your property.
Online evaluations are things like Zillow’s Zestimate or Realtor.com’s home evaluation tool. Those tools are mathematical algorithms that only tell part of the story. They focus on comparing square footage and location between recently sold properties. You have to hope they have the correct square footage of your home; on Realtor.com, the square footage of my home is incorrect. So right away their estimate of value is flawed.
An in-person market analysis focuses on attributes like the condition of the house; how well have you taken care of it? You can only know that by visiting the property. We’ll also note the finish quality like brick versus vinyl siding, which websites can’t know because they haven’t been to your property. We look at the age of the major components of the property, such as the roof and heating and air; the newer they are the better they are.
“Doing an in-person evaluation is more timely.”
We’ll also check out updates you’ve made, such as painting, floor coverings, design changes, any remodeling you’ve done, and more. There’s no way for an algorithm to know about those things. We’ll take the surroundings into account. What if the next-door neighbors have a chicken coop? That may not be appealing to all buyers. However, if the house closest to yours is worth $10 million, that would certainly be appealing.
Finally, believe it or not, doing an in-person evaluation is more timely. A high-quality, active real estate agent knows what you’re competing against in the current market and which sales haven’t been reported yet. All of these things can be calculated into your final home value analysis only by a real person with real estate experience.
If you’d like to know where your home fits into the present ever-changing market, reach out to me via phone or visit my website. I’ll sit down with you and discuss your home and help you make the right decisions, with no obligation. Also, if you have any real estate questions, feel free to contact me about them. I’d love to be your real estate resource.