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Why you should hire an appraiser

To many, an appraisal just looks like one more thing in the long list of items for a mortgage or refinance. While there are a growing number of automated home valuation processes that might seem cheaper than an appraisal, almost all lenders still call for a local expert because the stakes are incredibly high. Is getting a mortgage the only reason to get an appraisal? Are there other situations when the services of a licensed, independent real estate professional might be helpful? Of course there are.

Let W. Eric Howard & Associates help you lower your mortgage payment

Contest your tax assessment

It's possible you're paying too much in property taxes if you live in an area where property values have declined. Ad Valorem taxes are determined by a past assessment of your house, so if prices are less than what they used to be in your neighborhood, you can appeal your assessment and save money. When building your case, an appraisal from us is your best evidence. At W. Eric Howard & Associates, we're capable of assisting you in disputing your tax assessment.

Remove PMI to lower your mortgage payment

When the amount being loaned to the home buyeris more than 80% of the actual value of the real estate, nearly all lenders ask home buyers to buy this additional insurance policy. That policy is Private Mortgage Insurance, or PMI. This added payment is often folded into the monthly mortgage payment and is promptly forgotten. This is unfavorable because PMI is no longer required when the remaining balance of the loan - whether through market appreciation or principal pay down - goes below the 80% level. In fact, the United States Congress implemented a law in 1998 (the Homeowners Protection Act of 1998) that requires lenders to eliminate the PMI installments when the loan-to-value ratio conditions have been met.

W. Eric Howard & Associates can provide you with a statement regarding the value of your home, and the price you paid for the appraisal can generally be offset in a short amount of time because you'll no longer be paying the PMI.

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Divorce settlement with fewer hang-ups

A divorce can be a very horrible event for both parties, and it is often more complicated by the strenuous decision of who maintains the property. So both parties are completely aware of the true market value of their house, it's a good idea to get an appraisal from W. Eric Howard & Associates, regardless of the circumstances.

The parties will have a good idea of what price to set, if they want to sell the home. And if a "buyout" is the chosen option, both parties will feel like they've gotten a fair evaluation.

Ascertain a fair and accurate valuation for estate liquidation

The death of a loved one is a difficult time in life, and settling an estate from a death, or probate, often entails an appraisal to establish Fair Market Value for the residential property involved. The ethics provision within the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) binds us with confidentiality, ensuring the highest degree of discretion.

Most Americans don't have dedicated estate planners or executors to manage these affairs, unlike wealthy individuals. A home or other property often makes up an uneven share of the total estate value, so knowing the true value of the real estate at hand is of significant importance to ensuring disputing parties walk away knowing they've gotten a fair deal.

Relocate to or from Anne Arundel County through an employee relocation program

Employee relocation can be a stressful event, and we understand. That being said, we take great care in organizing a convenient appointment time for the appraisal inspection. During our detailed inspection, we suggest relocating employees to provide feedback on the positive features of their property, as well as information regarding any recent sales or listings in their neighborhood that they want considered.

Sell your home quickly — for the right price

A professional appraisal can help you make a more informed decision regarding your asking price, whether you want to sell your home on your own or use the assistance of a real estate agent. An appraiser has no vested interest in what amount the house sells for, apart from real estate agents. Our fees aren't related to the sales price, but rather they are based on our efforts to complete the appraisal report.

On a daily basis, we analyze the difference in value items like an additional bathroom or a kitchen remodel can make. And we're experts in knowing how long propertiesare on the market. So, seeking a professional appraisal is a trusted way to determine what improvements will add value and what a suitable sales price is for your home so you don't come up short or have your house on the market an unnecessarily long time.

Let W. Eric Howard & Associates help you sell your home quickly at the right price