How do you know how much a house is really worth? A professional appraisal is one way. One of the tools appraisers use is price per square foot. The term “price per square foot” is a term in every real estate transaction, and is a way to compare the relative values of similar properties that have recently sold. The price per square foot is calculated by dividing the selling price by the square footage of the home. Literally, what is being paid for every square foot of interior space. This calculation is designed to give a range, or the market trend of what homes are selling for in an area. It is also a way to gauge if values are going up or down. It is not necessarily a way to determine “value”.
The tricky part is that there are many factors that should affect the price per square foot of a home – things like the lot size, condition, and upgrades – things that might a home more valuable than another in the same neighborhood. A home that has fallen into disrepair vs a home that has been regularly maintained is a great example. When buyers are looking for a home, it’s usually all about the price, the location, and the condition. Folks want to be sure they are buying a home that will maintain its market value, and hopefully appreciate over the coming years.
The majority of buyers are seeking a move in ready, or turnkey home. One that doesn’t require having to take on a lot of repair work or remodeling projects.
What really brings value to a home?
Upgraded kitchens with newer appliances that work properly.
Upgraded bathrooms with modern tubs, showers and sinks. Master bedroom suites have become very popular and desirable.
(Something to keep in mind with all the upgraded appliances: has the plumbing been considered, and can the water heater keep up? How about the wiring and electrical panel?
Quality windows, a good roof to keep out the elements, and an HVAC system that is efficient and economical.
Curb appeal – like exterior paint, and tidy landscaping do wonders for a homes value.
Garage and storage space can add value as well. There are pros and cons to having a garage, with the new push towards green living, and using public transportation.
An old American icon is coming back into fashion in homes – the front porch. New home builders have caught on to this shift in what families are looking for in a home. The sight of front porches in a neighborhood can give an instant feel of community. It has become a type of social mechanism in some newer neighborhoods where the homes are denser and yards are smaller. It can promote more walking and interaction with others.
So value can be calculated in some ways, and it can be perceived in others. We have been helping home buyers and sellers get a handle on this elusive figure for years. Call or email us today. Let’s have a conversation about home values and what they mean for you whether you are buying OR selling!
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