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Wanting to reduce your current monthly payment and interest rate is many homeowner’s dreams. It’s nice to have an option to borrow cash from your home equity. If you’re looking into refinancing your home mortgage loan, note that lenders need you to have a home refinance appraisal.

A home appraisal is necessary before your lender approves your refinance loan. It’s when a home appraiser assesses the value of your property. An appraiser considers various factors in determining a home’s worth. So here are the home refinance appraisal tips you should consider:

1. Make an excellent first impression

Aside from assessing the interior condition of your home, the appraiser also examines the outside. When you ignore the exterior side of your property, your home might be appraised for less.

So make sure you’re working on the clutter in your yard. You should cover everything else on the outside that needs work. Don’t let the appraiser deduct hundreds of thousands from your home’s value. Prepare for his visit by cleaning up your yard. Replace those missing roof shingles, fix those loose shutters, and power wash your house to regain its fresh appearance.

Always remember that having an excellent first impression can be an advantage. So clean up those flower beds or redo the mulch. All these low effort ways can make your home appear easier on the eyes.

2. Spend money on improvements that pay off

Bathrooms and kitchens are two of the best selling points of a house. So make sure to update them so you can add thousands to your property’s value. If you don’t have time to do a full renovation of your bathrooms and kitchen, then doing minor upgrades will do.

Start by replacing dated sinks, put a decorative backsplash and countertops, and replace the wood floors. All of these can help raise your home appraisal. You can also take care of the light fixtures and faucets. Putting new appliances can also make the whole space sing.

3. Clean up the clutter inside

A cluttered interior also affects your home’s value. Clutters can cost you money if you don’t handle them ahead of them. So arrange those closets, the basement, and the garages. If you can’t handle the clutter anymore, you can donate items or put them in storage facilities temporarily. If you want to give the appearance of wider square footage, then try removing your oversized furniture.

4. Make sure everything in the house works

Having a spacious home with lots of modern features is a plus. But if any of them doesn’t work on the appraisal day, your property might be appraised for less. So comb through your home and see if every light switch, fan, or wall outlet works. See if there are visible cracks in the walls that you can repair before the appraisal comes.

If you have the money to replace worn carpet or flooring, then better. If you don’t, then focus on fixing the damaged portions or get the carpets professionally cleaned. A few touch-ups can worth gold if done correctly before the appraisal.

5. Ask for a local appraiser

Note that the bank picks the appraiser, not you. But you can still request for a local appraiser. Ideally, an appraiser should live within a 15-mile radius of your property. If the appraiser isn’t familiar enough with the area, he/she might come in for less than your home’s actual worth. So finding a local appraiser that knows your area can help you get that high appraisal value.

When trying to refinance a mortgage, having a low appraisal might crash your chances of getting one. Your mortgage lender might decide whether you have enough equity to qualify for a refinancing. If you don’t, you have to pay the difference from your own pocket to seal the deal. To avoid this mishap, preparing for your home appraisal is necessary. So follow these home refinance appraisal tips to present your home in the best light possible.