Pre-listing or FSBO appraisal NJ


Listing your home with a broker or selling it yourself?

An appraisal may be the most important tool you could have when marketing your home.  Whether selling your home through a realtor or doing it yourself “For Sale BOwner” (FSBO), an accurate appraisal is often the least expensive, least time-consuming, and most influential data source that can help you sell your home. 

What is your home worth?

If you are selling your home yourself (FSBO), how do you know what your home is really worth?  Would you know how to set the asking price?  Or how much to settle for when you receive offers?  You might do the following:

  • Ask friends, neighbors, or relatives.
  • Call a friend who knows a realtor to ask them for you.
  • Check on-line websites purporting to give home values.
  • Look in newspapers or home sales periodicals.
  • Take what you think is an educated guess.

Will these methods give you an accurate price?  Most likely not, and putting a home on the market at the wrong price could delay a possible sale for months, or even years.  Once prospective buyers have seen a home that was not properly priced, especially over-valued, chances are they will move on to look at other homes for sale, unlikely to come back.  The importance of properly pricing a home from the get-go should not be under-estimated. 

Why is an appraisal a good idea even before you list with a realtor?

Hiring a realtor? How will you know if the price set by the realtor is the right price?  Realtor’s commissions are based on the sale price of your home.  They have skin in the game and their main objective is to profit on your sale.  Realtors may:

  • Price your home at more than its actual value.
    • Many home owners choose to hire the realtor who gives them the highest price. This can be a major problem in selling your home, as overpriced homes do not entice many buyers and have few if any offers.  Such properties can become stale and sit on the market for long periods of time.
  • Suggest a price lower than what it is worth.
    • The realtor might be more interested in selling the home quickly to get a fast commission than maximizing your sale price.
  • Properly list the home.
    • This hopefully would result in the highest sale price in the shortest amount of time.

Why you need to be an informed homeowner

Being an informed homeowner is the best way for you to make informed decisions and be able to control the sale of what is typically your most valuable asset, your home.  An appraisal report prepared by a licensed appraiser can help you market your home at the right price the first time, whether you use a realtor or not.  When looking at real estate sales data on your own, do you know if:

  • sales were “forced” sales (i.e. bankruptcy, foreclosure, or estate sales),
  • homes were sold at market value, or
  • what meaningful differences sold homes have when compared to your home?

Without knowing this information, you could come to the wrong conclusions, and that could cost you in the long run.

Why a New Jersey home appraisal is invaluable for anyone looking to sell their home 

  • It can help in your negotiation with realtors before you sign a listing contract.
  • You can give prospective buyers a written, accurate opinion of value by a person licensed to give one, a licensed New Jersey home appraiser. 
  • The appraisal will provide you with information about local real estate market conditions and comparable sales, making you a powerful negotiator with potential buyers and their agents.
  • You might also get advance warning in the appraisal about potential repair items/issues that might affect or delay the sale of your home, or turn off potential buyers.