Your home’s evaluated market value is an unavoidable part of the sale or refinancing process. A Real Estate appraisal considers several factors, but none of them should come as a surprise if you are prepared. Here’s a short list of appraisal facts you should be aware.

 You don’t technically have access to the appraisal

Just because you paid someone for it, doesn’t mean you are entitled to it. Since the appraisal request usually comes from the lender, they technically own the document. As they are the client, you’re not legally entitled to the report. This means, if the appraisal comes back lower than you expected, you won’t necessarily know why.

But you can order your own appraisal

While it’s typically the lender who requests the appraisal, this doesn’t mean you can’t request your own. In asking for your own evaluation, you are the client, and so, you are privy to the full report. There are various reasons in which you may want to order own appraisal. It can help you in the appeal of a previous evaluation. It can help you prepare for future assessments and upgrades needed to improve the evaluation. And, if you want to list independently, an appraisal will help you determine your asking price. No matter the reason, you can order your own report. The appraisal cost is relatively small in comparison to the return on investment that comes with knowing the details.

 You can challenge the appraisal

The value of your home as stated in your appraisal is not set in stone. This means you can go back to the lender or appraiser, and appeal. To challenge the evaluation make sure you’ve done your research, and have tracked your renovations. When conducting the evaluation of your property, the appraiser will look at the homes that have sold, or are on sale, in your neighbourhood. If you think the appraiser missed properties that could affect your evaluation, let them know. It’s also possible that the appraiser missed some relevant upgrades to your property. Make sure to list them all, including costs, and leverage this information in your appeal. This information can help change the assessed value of your home.

Your neighbourhood affects the evaluation

The proximity to low-income or affluent communities are obvious factors that affect your home’s appraisal. But beyond the obvious, there are other influencers that determine market value. Is your home close to a school or park? Are major highways easily accessible? Are you close to public transit? These are all aspects an appraiser will take into account when determining the value of your home.


Unfortunately, like your home’s neighborhood, there are other factors, beyond your control, than can affect your home’s appraisal. Interest rate fluctuations can impact evaluations – economic factors will affect your home’s appraisal.