Calculating a Competitive List Price
Determining a listing price or the fair market value of your home is one of the most
difficult decisions home sellers face. If you price too high, you’ll scare off potential
homebuyers; if you price too low, you risk losing some of your hard-earned equity.
Two tools are typically used to calculate a competitive and accurate market price: the
comparative market analysis (CMA) and a certified appraisal report.
The CMA compares the list price and final sale price of like properties in the
neighborhood and based on that information offers an informal estimate of your home’s
value. A Realtor can provide you with a CMA, help you analyze the data and factor in
any other features or improvements specific to your home that will affect the list price,
including its amenities, proximity to parks, transportation, shopping, and school quality.
Your Realtor will also be able to inform you of the typical amount of time that listings
stay on the market.
A certified appraiser’s evaluation of your home is a formal estimate of the property’s
value. Lenders require that homebuyers obtain a satisfactory certified appraisal as part of
the lending process. A certified appraiser will base the estimate on a number of factors
similar to those factored into the CMA, including comparable sales data, location,
condition, and any amenities, such as a pool or view, that may enhance the value of your
If you haven’t already, now is a good time to hire a professional Realtor. Only an expert
can help you wade through and analyze the litany of variables that will factor into the
best and most competitive list price for your home.