Mike Lightbourn's Bahama Advice Column
What's Your Estimate?
2017-07-21 10:17:38 by Mike Lightbourn
No one expects you to be able to appraise a Bahamas home.
It's the responsibility of a Bahamas Real Estate Association appraiser to provide an independent estimate of either your home's value, or the value of a home you are interested in purchasing.
Lending institutions, such as banks, use the appraisal as an estimate of a home's market value to determine the loan to value ratio.
In other words, the ratio determines what the bank will lend based on the appraised value.
The appraisal also ensures that a lender is sufficiently covered on a loan.
If you are borrowing from a bank, youíll be required to get an appraisal on the Bahamas property you want to buy, using a bank approved appraiser.
The appraisal is not to be confused with a Competitive Market Analysis (CMA). The listing agent will compile a CMA based on the most recent closings in the area. Sellers use CMAs to price their property for sale.
Everyone uses professionals, such as lawyers, when they need, as in this case, legal services.
Buying and selling a home is a serious matter. After all, itís the most important investment most people will make in a lifetime.
While the lender uses the report to confirm a property's value before approving a loan, sellers will often order an appraisal to get an independent opinion of the value.
The condition of a home obviously has an impact on the valuation.
Make sure you keep the receipts for any significant upgrades or repairs that have been done in recent years, such as septic, roof or air conditioning work.
Besides having an impact on the value of a home, this shows responsibility and pride-of-ownership and will have a positive impact on the buyer if you can point to these improvements.
The condition of the roof is of particular interest since we live in a hurricane belt. If your hurricane proof windows were installed by a factory certified technician, keep any documentation you may have as proof.
Termites can be an issue so make sure you keep any records of termite treatments, tenting or inspections.
If a powerful diesel generator is being sold along with your home, use the maintenance records to impress a buyer. A good solid generator is a valuable asset.
Make sure you use a licensed Bahamas Real Estate Association appraiser.
Questions? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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(Mike Lightbourn is president of Coldwell Banker Lightbourn Realty)
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