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Quicken Finds Widening Appraiser-Homeowners Gap

The disconnect between appraisers and homeowners continues. According to the Home Price Perception Index released Tuesday morning, appraised values were 1.77 percent less than homeowner estimates in March.

Released by Quicken Loans, the HPPI showed the disparity between homeowner estimates and appraised values has widened for the fourth consecutive month. In February, the disparity was 1.69 percent.

While the disconnect is present across the country, there are some markets breaking the habit—many on the West Coast.

“The national average shows appraisals lower than homeowner expectations, but some cities are bucking that trend,” said Bill Banfield, Vice President of Capital Markets at Quicken. “With prices sprinting forward in many of the booming housing markets in the West, it can be difficult for homeowners to keep up with appraisers, who are on the ground, examining real estate price changes every day.”

Staying tuned into the market is crucial for buyers in these markets, Banfield said.

“This study is one more reminder for consumers to keep an eye on their local market before selling or refinancing,” Banfield said. “The state of their local market could affect their home’s value—on either end of the spectrum.” 

At a market level, appraiser opinions outpaced homeowner expectations the most in Denver, Dallas, Portland, San Francisco, and Seattle.

Quicken also released its Home Value Index on Tuesday, which showed home values rising 0.63 percent in March. Over the year, they jumped 3.3 percent.

Monthly growth was highest in the Northeast U.S., where home values rose 1.78 percent over February. The least monthly growth was in the South, which saw just a .84 percent rise in home values.

Year-over-year, however, the South performed better. The region saw the fastest annual increase, with values jumping 4.67 percent over March 2016. The Midwest saw the slowest annual growth. Values in this region rose only 2.11 percent.

According to Banfield, it’s the ultra-competitive market that’s spurring the growth.

“Real estate signs are beginning to pop up, even before leaves appear on the neighborhood trees. As home-selling season gets started across the country, enthusiastic buyers are battling for available homes,” Banfield said. “The increased attention to home sales has led to more competition for a relatively small inventory of homes, continuing to fuel the rising prices.”

About Author: Aly J. Yale

Aly J. Yale is a freelance writer and editor based in Fort Worth, Texas. She has worked for various newspapers, magazines, and publications across the nation, including The Dallas Morning News and Addison Magazine. She has also worked with both the Five Star Institute and REO Red Book, as well as various other mortgage industry clients on content strategy, blogging, marketing, and more.
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