Good News - reappraisal questions

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Good News - reappraisal questions
5
Mon, 04-28-2003 - 10:59am
YIPPEE!! My husband and I decided to have our house re-appraised and, if the appraisal is high enough, we can refinance to include our truck payment (owe 4500) and the city water line (owe 4500).

That will leave us totally debt free except for the house!!

As of today, we owe 25 years on our house. Because we can refinance at a lower interest rate, even financing more $ due to the above, our payment will stay the same and we will still owe for only another 25 years.

If anyone has any tips on getting our house ready for a re-appraisal, please forward them along!! Oh, and, what do we do now that everything is paid off - I think I heard something about having 6 months worth of expenses in savings or something. Let me know! Thanks!

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-14-2002
Tue, 04-29-2003 - 12:19am
We had our home reapprasied last year, and again last month - both times in preparation for a refinancing, and both times for a much lower interest rate. Congratulations to you! it is definitely a good move!

What we've learned about reappraisals and refinancing our home:

1. Shop around for a home loan and get them competing with each other. We did our homework and made plenty of contacts. Have found much better results, better interest rates and better contracts with an independent mortgage broker than going through a financing firm. Dec. 2001: Company A offered us 6 3/4% interest and $7,000 closing costs, then poured on the pressure to sign! sign! sign! Up went the red flags! We contacted an independent mortgage broker, who found a contract at 6 1/4%, $4800 closing costs, and more flexible terms. With the still falling interest rates, we decided to do it again - April 2003. Company B offered us 5 1/4% and either 15 or 30 yrs, but the same independent broker came back with 4 7/8% at 11, 15, 20, or 30 yrs.

2. Check out the appraiser, and don't accept an appraisal that you believe is unrealistic. Get another one. Company A sent us an appraiser who works for them, who appraised our house far below what we thought it was worth - $95,000. When we rejected Company A's offer, and contacted the independent broker, he sent another appraiser - this one also an independent who works for several companies - this guy took a little longer (about 2 weeks) to complete his report, but came back at $150,000.

3. Get a walk-through appraisal first - about $75 cost in our area. This brief appraisal is not adequate for the mortgage company to formulate a contract, but the appraiser will tell you what you need to do - fix the front porch, replace the fuse box, whatever... so you will have a definite list of To-Dos before the actual appraisal, which runs about $350 in our neighborhood.

4. Concentrate on structural problems instead of decorating pretty. Appraisers will give you more points for a solidly-built floor with old dingy carpets than they will for a weak, uneven floor with brand-new carpet. Even if you have a structural problem that you can't fix before the appraisal, get started on it. He'd rather see a repair in progress, and may give you full credit for it, than if you did nothing at all. We had a half-bath upstairs, and intended to make it into a full bath - but plumbing for the tub had not been done yet. We set the bathtub temporarily in its place, and had the pipes, faucet and drain laid out ready to be installed, and we got credit for a full bath. Also, we wanted to build a deck on the back of the house, but ran out of time before the appraisal. Because we had already purchased the lumber, installed the backplate and set the posts, and had building plans, he gave us full credit for a finished deck.

5. Then, hide or mask what you can't fix right away. (Sounds dishonest, but you do what you gotta do). We have problems with a leaky foundation in the basement, and had done some excavation to enlarge parts of the basement, leaving bare earth walls in some places (egads!) No time or money to pour concrete foundation walls before the scheduled appraisal, so we put up studs and wall panels to hide the mess (fake walls, so-to-speak) - to buy us time until we could do the job right. It worked (!) and we got credit for a full, finished basement.

Good luck!!! It sounds like you have reached a milestone - I'm so happy for you!

Msfit

                  &nbs

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-14-2003
Tue, 04-29-2003 - 9:03am
Hey Shari. That's great! Mr Joe and I are awaiting on the appraisal for our refinance. Have you posted on Real Life Real Estate with your questions about yours?

Yes, 3-6 months salary in savings is ideal. :o)

Ms Joe

Ms Joe
CM Ms Joe Cool
Senior Community Moderator
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Avatar for mymartes
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Wed, 04-30-2003 - 12:44pm
happy dance!!!!

So happy for u, that's great news. Congrats.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-14-2003
Wed, 04-30-2003 - 5:16pm
YAY! That's great news!
Avatar for cl_phocid
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Wed, 04-30-2003 - 5:27pm
Hi Shari - that's great news! Congrats. Definitely check out the informational post by msfit - I'm totally impressed :)

I also highly recommend the Real Life Real Estate board - that board is so fantastic when it comes to all questions real estate - I don't know what I would have done w/out it when I bought my house last year!

All my best,

Danni

All my best,
Danni