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Online Value Estimates Are Problematic

By Ward Adams, Jan 20 2016 08:46PM

While technology has become an important part of our life, some aspects of the new information access age is problematic.

We were just asked to list a property that was involved a trust type situation. To eliminate downline issues with family members we suggested that we would get an appraisal before formally putting the home on the market.

A state licensed appraiser was hired. In a professional and timely fashion, he came back with an appraisal of $215,000. The seller was horrified because she just saw an estimated value on Zillow of $244,000. She was immediately skeptical of the qualifications of the appraiser.

And she still wanted to list the property at a higher figure. What she didn't consider is that the algorythms used to calculate the estimate are based on the most generalized averages of data including area sale prices and home sizes. They don’t consider the subtle value influencers between neighborhoods, streets and even comp homes.

Don't take online estimates at face value without consulting with a realtor and or appraiser, the people who know the influencer details.

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