Get My Portland Home Value Estimate
With a lot of things in life, there is the easy way and there is the hard way.
The Easy Way to a Home Value Estimate
With home value estimates the easy way is to visit a long list of websites providing you with computer generated values. Zillow and Redfin tend to be the top stops to get this quick and easy estimate.
The problem with quick and easy is often quality, as we all know. Computer generated estimates have no idea what the interior condition of any home is. In Portland we have a huge collection of old homes built as early as the late 1800s. Many have searched for the oldest Portland home and believe it may have been build in the mid-1800s. Regardless, there are thousands of Portland homes more than a century old! Now, what is a computer going to do with that? When was the home last updated, 90 years ago, 50, 40, 20, 10, 2? Did the remodel or revitalization keep the original charm intact? A computer doesn’t know (at least not yet). These computer home value estimators are blind.
Further, these computers are primarily crunching lot sizes and square footage. They are not that much fancier than a simple calculator. In Portland we have mid-century moderns, four square homes, bungalows, craftsman, Dutch Colonials, French Farmhouses, Tudors, English Cottages, Victorian homes and more! The style of the square footage means everything. The computers home value estimators can’t tell if the home is on a sloped yard (non-functional yard), can’t tell if the home is on stilts, can’t tell if the yard is a garden or a mud pit, can’t tell if the yard is grass or forest. Once again, I would argue that the Zillow Zestimate and others like it are simply blind. Now, if you live in a suburb of Portland in a subdivision where they are only a few different layouts and all the homes were built within a year or two of each other, the computers can get close. They still won’t know what home is remodeled, who added central air, and if the buyer had purchased all the extra builder upgrades, etc.
The Hard Way to a Portland Home Value Estimate
Do it yourself. Someone might argue that this isn’t that difficult anymore with access to online data. There is some truth to that, but the reality is, the online data the public can access is incomplete. Portland real estate agents have access to all the data in RMLS (our local MLS) and information the public cannot access. Real estate agents can see how long it too each home to sell, they can see its full history (at least back decades), they can see old listing photos and track the difference over time, they can see home many times a home failed to sell, and most of all, it is easy for them to run comprehensive reports on the area using thousands upon thousands of different combination results to get the information they need. Further, real estate agents are in and out of houses all day long. Even if you attend most of the open houses in your neighborhood, many real estate agents are no longer holding open houses and some homes are sold by agents off the market altogether. Also, home owners tend to be biased. It is understandable, but more often than not a home owner is not able to be completely objective about their own home.
The Better Way to a Home Value Estimate
Use an experienced real estate agent in Portland. I know that is what I have been leading up to in the article so far, but it is true. It is the middle way, it is not easy nor is it hard (for the professional). A good real estate agent will put in the time to create a comprehensive home value report for you. Of course, while they will typically do this for free they are hoping to earn your business when it comes time to sell your Portland home. If you are thinking about selling your home in the Portland metro area, even if you are thinking up to a year out, we’d love to do a home value estimate for you now. We can also give a projection, an estimate, of what the home value might be up to a year out.April 28, 2017