Midtown Appraisal Group southern Ontario

Cleaning, clutter and style: Do they affect appraised value?

The answer is...it depends. As an appraiser, I'm often asked some version of this question: "My house is a mess and I just found out they want to send the appraiser tomorrow. Do you think it'll make a huge difference to the appraised value?" The standard, professional answer is, of course: "No, it won't affect value. Appraisers are trained to look at the structure and layout of the house, and overlook the sinkful of dirty dishes. Don't worry." The truth,…...
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Kevin Slemko of Midtown Appraisal Group on valuation factors

What goes into an appraised value?

It's not just a comparison to the house next door. It happens to every appraiser, often once a week: Someone involved in the property buying and selling process says something like "Yeah, this appraisal won't be that hard. The house across the street sold a month ago and it's pretty much the same layout, so we expect the value of our property to be about that price - well, a bit more probably, since prices are going up so fast!"…...
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Kevin Slemko, AACI on mortgage terms

Mortgage term lengths: Do you know your choices?

Appraisers aren't real estate salespeople or mortgage brokers, and definitely shouldn't be offering advice or counsel to the people whose properties they're appraising. However, as we've discussed before, because of our particular role in the process, and because they often end up meeting home buyers and sellers during their inspections, it's not surprising that we're often asked questions about home mortgages. A recent study showed that as much as 50% of Canadians don't really understand mortgage terminology, and aren't able…...
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Kevin Slemko of Midtown Appraisal Group FAQs

Appraisals: The 5 questions we’re asked most often

Until the pandemic, like many appraisers, I often didn't interact with property owners during the appraisal process: A financial institution would call with an appraisal request, I'd make arrangements with the real estate agent to pick up the keys or access the lockbox, and do the inspection when the owners or residents were at work. It was left to the real estate agent or mortgage provider to explain the appraisal process to their clients. The past 15+ months have changed…...
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How do you value a home when there are no comparable sales

What happens when there are no comparable sales?

Say what you will about sprawling new subdivisions, they're a residential appraiser's dream. There's nothing easier than putting a value on a house when there have been 4 sales of the exact same model on the street in the past 6 months. But what happens when you're faced with, say, a beautiful 90-year-old home that's been renovated multiple times over the years, has a larger backyard than the newer properties which have sprung up around it - but also a…...
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Overview of the home appraisal process

Appraisals 101: A handy graphic

You don't have to be an expert, but you should know the basics. I know what it's like: Whether you're buying or selling your home, especially in the current overheated market, the last thing you have time (or interest) for is a deep dive into real estate appraisals. At the same time, as a vendor or purchaser of property, especially if it's your first one or it involves the fairly large sums of money typical of real estate in southern…...
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Second mortgage FAQs by Kevin Slemko

Second mortgages: Popular FAQs

Second mortgages can be useful - but it's important to know what you're getting into As appraisers, it's not unusual for us to be asked to provide a valuation for a property when a second mortgage is being considered. Because second mortgages are, as their name suggests, 'second in line' to be repaid after the first mortgage, the amount of equity in the property is even more crucial than for a first mortgage. Lenders want to be assured that in…...
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Kevin Slemko offers tips on remote appraisals

Remote appraisals: How to prepare

Virtual home inspections are safer (and sometimes easier). While coronavirus and the accompanying lockdowns have meant that most of us haven't been inside another person's home for weeks now, the truth is that homes are still being bought and sold and refinanced - and that means that there's still a (surprisingly healthy) demand for home appraisals. So what do you do? Video calls are a good first step While some appraisers and financial services companies allow homeowners to provide their…...
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Midtown Appraisal Group on the current real estate market

House prices in Ontario: Do your research

It's not unusual to be thinking about moving. Whether you've been working from home, are an essential worker, or have been furloughed, you - like most Canadians - have probably been spending a lot more time at home than usual in the past few weeks. And it's funny how spending so much time looking at the same four walls gets you thinking about what it'd be like to move. Depending on who you talk to, now is either a 'great'…...
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Hamilton appraiser Kevin Slemko on Canadian real estate

House prices in Canada: An overview

Well, it's that time of year again: The time when experts and pundits everywhere look back at the year that was and try to make sense of it - and figure out what we can expect in the year to come. With that in mind, we wanted to share a couple of infographics we came across this week. Canadian house prices by major cities Zoocasa produced an interesting graphic based on CREA house price information on a month-by-month basis over…...
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