If you’re planning on putting your home up for sale, one of your first steps should be scheduling a professional appraisal. Realtors and real estate agents can leverage their deep knowledge of local markets to determine accurate listing prices, and licensed appraisers offer an alternative option if you’re looking for a second opinion.

Being informed about the appraisal process and understanding the various factors that influence a home’s value will help you secure the best possible sale price. To that end, here are five critical factors that play a major role in determining how much your house is worth.

Location, location, location

With location, there’s more to consider than just the neighbourhood your home is in. While an address in a particularly prestigious or highly sought-after district will certainly boost its sale price, buyers also consider the type of street it’s on. Generally, houses that are located on busy roads are valued slightly lower than comparable properties on quiet side streets in the same area.

Your home’s condition

Structural problems, outdated wiring, old roofs that need replacing, crumbling masonry, and unkempt landscape elements will all have a negative impact on buyer offers. The flip side of the coin is that well-kept properties that have clearly been carefully maintained will command a premium, especially if you’ve recently done some renovations.

If you want to renovate as a way to generate better offers, keep in mind that basic maintenance-oriented fixes and cosmetic improvements generally have the best ROI rates.

Size matters

Larger homes are worth more money, especially if they are significantly bigger than neighbouring properties. However, it isn’t just the total square footage of the house itself that matters. Buyers will also consider the size of the lot and the number of bathrooms and bedrooms in the home when evaluating its lifestyle and investment appeal.

How old is your home?

Age is a funny thing. It can work for you or against you, regardless of whether your home is newer or older.

If you have a newer home in a neighbourhood filled with heritage properties, it may be valued lower than you might think simply because it is more likely to be considered less desirable from an ownership perspective. In most other cases, though, newer is usually better. Recently built homes tend to be more energy-efficient, and their infrastructure is typically in healthier shape.

On the flip side of the coin, older homes with historic appeal may actually be worth more than newer properties in the same neighbourhood. The caveat, of course, is that they will need to be well-maintained with modern, upgraded infrastructure for their aesthetic appeal to translate into a higher sale price.

Market forces

Like age, market forces can work in your favor or to your detriment, depending on which direction current trends are headed. High demand and low property inventories contribute to rising prices, while high property inventories and low demand will make meeting your asking price more challenging.

When market forces favour buyers, it can sometimes work to your benefit to wait things out until a seller’s market evolves. However, waiting too long can also come back to haunt you if the buyer’s market strengthens. This is one of the main reasons it’s so important to work with an experienced and knowledgeable realtor whose advice and expertise you can trust.

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About Jethro Seymour

Jethro Seymour, one of the Top Davisville Village Real Estate Brokers at Royal LePage RES Ltd., Johnston & Daniel Division.     Jethro Seymour is a midtown Toronto residential specialist with over 20      years of sales experience in real estate, marketing, construction and publishing. He has helped many families find homes in Toronto ’s great neighbourhoods, and has extensive knowledge of local markets, new home construction, resale home sales, and the condo market. Living in midtown Toronto, Jethro previews many of the homes that come to market for his clients and inventory knowledge. Jethro specializes in Midtown, Davisville Village and Leaside neighbourhoods. For more information, call Jethro Seymour, Broker.

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