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Greater Pittsburgh Area Real Estate Blog

Appraisal or Home Inspection—Do You Really Need Both?

Key takeaways:

  • A potential buyer should get both an appraisal and inspection in order to ensure they are paying the correct price for their potential home.
  • An appraisal represents the value of the home, whereas an inspection evaluates the home’s overall condition. 
  • Want an expert’s help in determining what to offer for your dream home? Contact the Jim Dolanch Team today to find the best price for your home!

Learn Why Both Are Essential to the Home Buying Process

Have you ever heard the terms “home appraisal” and “home inspection” and wondered what the difference was? Learn more about what differentiates the two, and why they are both so important to the home buying process!

Appraisal made easy

An appraiser determines the value of a home.

Many buyers get home inspections and appraisals confused, so don’t fret if that was you! Let’s see if we can clear up the confusion. Purchasing a home can be considered one of the largest investments that someone will make. Having an appraiser evaluate the value of your home will aid in protecting your finances. When you put an offer in on a new home, it is important to ensure that you are getting the best bang for your buck!

What is an appraisal exactly?

A buyer learns about getting an appraisal done.

Arguably, one of the most important steps that a potential buyer can take when buying a home is having an appraisal. An appraisal is a professional evaluation of the market value of the home that you would like to purchase. The majority of times, an appraisal is actually a requirement by the lender you are using to confirm the actual value of the home. This is done prior to lending the potential buyer money for the purchase of the home. An appraisal differentiates from the home inspection, which determines the condition that the home is in prior to finalizing the sale.

Why is an appraisal so crucial to buying a home?

A group of people meet to go over the finances for the home.

In addition to ensuring that you are making a wise investment in the purchase of your home, generally, you can expect an appraisal to be required by lenders. Obtaining an unbiased appraisal is the best way to confirm the value of the home and see that it matches the sale price. If you have to use a mortgage to fund the purchase of your new home, the appraisal assures the lender they are not giving out more money than the actual value of the home. This benefits the buyer in that they do not have to take out more money than necessary and could potentially have a lower interest rate.

In today’s sellers’ market, the limited inventory available for buyers allows the sellers to increase the price of their home, even though it may not actually be worth as much as they are listing it for. This helps to keep home prices in check and prevents the seller from setting the price however they see fit. Should you run into any issues with a difference between the sale price and the home’s appraised value, your trusted real estate agent can be a huge asset in navigating any additional negotiations that may need to take place.

Inspecting your home and why it matters

A home inspector writes on a clipboard.

Make sure that you are getting your money’s worth! It is important to determine what condition your home is in, so getting a home inspection is imperative. Even if you have a home appraised, knowing the value doesn’t necessarily mean you will know the actual condition of the home until you have someone inspect the home. And yes, even a brand new home needs to be inspected to ensure that the builder did not take any shortcuts!

Understanding the current condition of your home will allow you to determine the current state and safety of the house. This will grant you the potential to negotiate the final price or have the current owner fix any issues themselves prior to the closing. If anything at all is questionable or seems off—such as the age of the roof, the state of the HVAC system, or leaky faucets—you have the right to discuss these issues and repairs with the seller prior to signing on the dotted line. For any questions about how to best handle a post-home inspection negotiation, work with a trusted Realtor with experience in these negotiations.

Allow Us to Be On Your Team

Still have questions about the difference between these two vital steps of the homebuying process? You don’t have to figure it all out on your own! Reach out to our experienced and trusted agents today to get all the answers you could ever need. Our team has experience navigating a post-inspection negotiation and will make sure that you secure the best price for the actual value of your home. Contact us today for help in finding and obtaining your dream home.

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