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Appraisal vs Inspection - What's the Difference?

Are you feeling overwhelmed by all of the terminology in the real estate world? Well, you are not alone. Today I'm going to clear up any confusion between an inspection and an appraisal. Whether you are selling a home or buying a home, it's important to know the difference between these two.

There are two types of an inspection in a transaction. There's the seller’s pre-inspection and there's the buyers home inspection. The difference is that the seller’s pre-inspection is something that the seller will do prior to putting their house on the market to ensure that there's no major repairs needed. It's a good idea to have an inspection done prior to listing because not only does it tell a seller if there's any major repairs that need to be fixed, but it also gives you a heads up of what a buyer might see.

The buyer’s inspection is typically done after a home goes into contract and this is paid for by the buyer. It is their own verification. What the home inspection does for the buyer is it tells them what problems could arise in the house. A home inspector's job is to educate you on repairs that may be needed in the future. They're going to look at things like the electrical panel, the plumbing, the dishwasher, they may even go in the crawl space under the house, or over the house.

The home inspection for a seller or for a buyer serves as an educational tool for you to understand the repairs and the potential repairs, and the costs associated with those repairs. The appraisal is done for the lender. The appraisal does not happen until after a home goes into contract and the buyer has applied for their mortgage. The lender will hire an appraiser to determine the value of the home so the lender can assess their risk properly. As a seller, you don't get to see the appraisal. As a buyer, you get the full report.

You can get an appraisal outside of a real estate transaction if you just want to determine the value of your home. I hope this helps clear up the difference between a home inspection and appraisal.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me at 206-962-0247 or Remember, whether you're buying a home or selling a home, it all starts with a dream. Let's dream together!


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