One part of our recent refinance that we haven’t yet expanded upon was the home appraisal that was required as a part of the process. It was admittedly a bit exciting and nerve racking at the same time. Exciting because, for the first time since we purchased in 2006, we’d know exactly what all of our improvements were worth to our home’s value. Nerve racking because, well, we all know what the market is doing to home prices these days…
The appraisal process was also interesting because it was a chance for us to reminisce about all of the improvements we did over the last 3 years (the appraiser asked what we updated and couldn’t believe our lengthy list). In being asked to recite all that we did, we came up with this list of everything that’s changed (each bullet is conveniently linked to more info & pics on that subject):
- Several trees removed from front to create grassy yard
- Gravel driveway paved
- Uneven, cracking slate patio replaced with cobblestone pavers
- New energy efficient windows throughout
- New hardwood floors in half of house (replacing linoleum)
- Refinished hardwood floors in other half
- New appliances in renovated laundry area
- Three widened doorways for more flow
- One closed doorway to create 3rd bedroom
- Dining area added to formal living room (pendant light & shelves installed)
- Built-in closets flanking the bed in master bedroom
- Crown molding added to living room and all 3 bedroooms
- Radon mitigation system added
- New light fixtures throughout the interior and exterior
- Fully renovated kitchen with new cabinets, counters and appliances (now there’s a dishwasher!)
All in all, Sherry and I estimate that we’ve spent about $30,000 completing the above improvements and realized full well that not all of it would show up in our appraised home value in this sluggish economy. But we were still pleasantly surprised when our appraisal came back $30,000 higher than the purchase price. Not to mention that the appraiser said it deserved to be even higher, he just couldn’t find comps in the area to justify it on paper. We’re just overjoyed to see our home’s value moving in the upward direction at all, let alone recouping all of our improvement costs thus far in such a bum market.
Have you guys had any interesting home appraisal experiences lately? Or are most of you just shielding yourselves from even having to know at this point? Do tell.
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