How to Avoid a Low Home Appraisal: Tips and Strategies

Did you find a buyer and suddenly realize your home may not be as prepared as it should be for an appraisal? If your home will not pass the lender’s assessment, there is a possibility that your buyer will withdraw their interest in buying your house.  If you find yourself in this mind space, calm yourself, and don’t panic. Until the appraiser steps foot in your door, you still have time to put things in place.

What affects an appraisal isn’t only major damages. Even the little things may prompt the appraiser to think twice about your property.  In this article, we give you nine (9) things that you may want to work on while waiting for your house to sell:

A Messy House

Although clutter can always be cleared up, it can inevitably give an impression that the home is not well taken care of. While appraisers are trained to ignore clutter like dirty dishes, scattered toys, etc., clutter may still imply that there might also be hidden issues in the property that you chose to overlook, like mold or a damaged wall.  As cliché as it sounds, first impressions matter, so you’d want to welcome the appraiser with a clean and tidy home to reduce suspicions.

In case your property has been abandoned for years and trashed and damaged by lawbreakers, you might want to ask for help. You can buy white cloth or curtains to cover up exposed pipes, insulation, and other damages, then sweep the floor clean. This can take time and effort, but it will do a lot during the appraisal.

Peeling Paint

When wall paint starts to flake, it can be due to different underlying reasons, such as moisture build-up.  You can repair a peeling wall paint by cleaning the affected area first, applying a patching material that you can buy in hardware stores, sanding it to make it even with rest, and removing the dust to finish the job.

Over Personalized Renovations

Did you have your family name engraved on the door, the walls, or in other permanent structures of the house?  This is one way of personalizing a space. While there’s no definite rule stating that personalized parts of a home are grounds for a low appraisal, the appraiser can still consider that in the report. This is because they know that the buyer would have to modify that section of the house which will come at a price.

So, if you have something like these around your property, it might be best to cover them up yourself.

Hazardous Structures

Hazardous structures can include hazardous establishments near your property. For example, if your home is situated near a factory, a power plant, a mining area, or any other private/public spaces that pose a huge risk to residents, that can affect your appraisal. This is because an appraisal doesn’t only involve the conditions within your property but also takes into account the situation of your neighborhood or town.

If you’re located near a mining site, for example, and for some unfortunate reason, the mining activities disturb the stability of the surrounding ground/soil. This could affect the foundation of your house. With this, your home is considered within a high-risk area.


Mold is hazardous to health. Humans and animals are never to go near any mold because the particles can be inhaled and cause respiratory illnesses. It would be best to consult or hire a professional if you have pests or mold problems in your house because they have the right tools and gear to get rid of the problem safely.

Garage Condition

A garage in the right condition is able to protect or safeguard the resident’s motor vehicles completely. This means that the garage door can be closed and locked, the roof is sturdy enough, the walls don’t have any holes, the cabinetry is stable, and there are no loose nails.

If an appraiser sees anything in your garage that could place a motor vehicle and the passengers at risk, then that may hurt your appraisal.

Scan your garage and try to see which ones need to be fixed.

Structural Materials

The materials your home is built with affect an appraisal. The stronger, more durable, and more weather-proof the materials are, the higher you’re appraised value can be. Since a full renovation can take months, you can, at the least, repair the parts that have started to degrade. That way, it can be considered brand new.

Style of the Home

The reason why some homeowners upgrade their homes before selling is because home renovations can increase a property’s value. Upgrading or renovating a home means that hazardous and inconvenient areas in the space have been addressed and corrected.  Unfortunately, homes constructed way, way back still have construction designs that are quite risky. For example, ceiling paints used before 1940 had high concentrations of lead. So, the year when your home was built and the style it has will affect your appraisal.

Source: Environmental Protection Agenc

Closet Space

Don’t be surprised when the appraiser opens your closets. This isn’t to evaluate how organized or cluttered you are. Rather, it’s to check how far the wall is so the appraiser can get a more precise measurement of the room. If your closet space has hidden spaces or rooms, you have to check and inform the appraiser.

If you think there are too many things in your home that can lead to a poor appraisal value and you’re not keen on fixing them anymore before selling, you can consider selling your home to us at Spire Home Buyers. We buy homes in Georgia without having your home appraised because we don’t go through a lender. We buy houses in full cash, and we buy them as is!

Call us today at (678) 318 – 1801 and get an offer for your home in as fast as 24 hours!


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