The Short List: Cindy Canterbury’s Best Ways to Ensure a Smooth Appraisal Process

by Atlanta Agent


Cindy Canterbury is an agent and senior marketing consultant with Harry Norman, Realtors.

Every week, we ask a real estate professional for their Short List, a collection of tips and recommendations on an essential topic in real estate. This week, we talked with Cindy Canterbury, who is an agent and senior marketing consultant with Harry Norman, Realtors.

4. First of all the listing agent needs to help the seller be realistic about pricing. We are in a time of low inventory and buyers are, in some cases, willing to make an offer at full price just to ensure they will get the contract. It does not benefit the buyer, seller or anyone associated with the transaction to have a contract at a value that will not be able to be supported by an appraisal.

3. If there is a loan involved and the appraised value is less than the sales price, the lender will make a loan based on the lower of the two. If that happens, there are several options which include:

  • The buyer can make up the difference in cash.
  • The seller can agree to lower the sales price.
  • The two parties might not be able to negotiate new terms and the sale is terminated, leaving the buyer and the seller unhappy.

2. On the other side of the transaction, the buyer’s agent should provide sound advice and appropriate comparable sales to the buyer to help them decide at what level they will want to make an offer. If there are limited comparable sales, it is not unusual for the buyer’s agent to ask the listing agent to provide the properties they used in determining the offering price with the seller. It is also useful to know if there have been upgrades and/or renovations done to the house that would add value to the appraised value.

1. At the time the listing agent is contacted by the appraiser to set an appointment to go to the home before preparing their report, the agent should offer to provide comparable sales to support the sales price and a list of upgrades and renovations, if applicable. If the home was priced properly from the start, this part should be the easy for the listing agent. Many appraisers appreciate the listing agent offering to do this, but of course, it is up the appraiser to make the final decision as to whether to use the comparable sales provided or not.

In summary, all agents involved in the transaction should do their homework to properly advise their clients on the home’s value, and be willing to justify it. And, the clients should be realistic about what to offer and accept when negotiating a sales price.

Cindy Canterbury is an agent and senior marketing consultant with Harry Norman, Realtors. A former executive, Cindy has been licensed to practice real estate in Georgia since 1987, and primarily serves the Cobb, Cherokee and Paulding counties. She has numerous certifications, which allow her to serve the senior’s market; work as a relocation specialist; and assist clients dealing with short sales and foreclosures.

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