Recently the Home Valuation Code of Conduct (HVCC) has been blamed for being the main reason appraisal values are low. It definitely hasn’t helped the situation but doesn’t hold true for every home. There are other ways to negatively impact the appraisal:
Let There Be Light
Having a home show well isn’t only for buyers. Open windows to let in sunlight and make the house feel bigger. Get rid of any unwanted odors as it could lead the appraiser to believe there are underlying issues.
Appraisers can easily look past minimal clutter or boxes being packed. But having storage areas or entire bedrooms that aren’t accessible just won’t fly. A clean and de-cluttered home will leave a good impression, which can translate into a higher value.
Not Fixing Problems
Depending on the type of loan the home may need to be checked for additional items. Generally speaking for an FHA loan, anything that represents a health or safety issue will need to be remedied. In today’s market a lot of foreclosed homes are missing pipes or have broken windows. Some even have the utilities turned off but these need to be operable. The loan won’t be approved without these issues being handled prior to closing.
Minor cosmetic issues won’t usually be a problem. But peeling paint might be lead-based if the home was built prior to 1978. To see all the FHA appraisal guidelines visit HUD’s website.
Annoying the Appraiser
Yeah I said it – just leave them alone. Many homeowners feel the need to follow the appraiser around like a lost puppy. Asking a few questions is fine, just don’t go overboard by trying to learn the entire appraisal process in 30 minutes.