Monday, August 30, 2021 / by Karri Bedor
What If a Home Doesn’t Appraise?
In this market, many sellers are concerned the house they are selling will not appraise at the value the buyer offered. That certainly is a legitimate concern and is a definite possibility.
Here’s a quick explanation of what happens during the appraisal part of the offer. Most likely if you have an appraisal contingency, the deadline is between 30 to 60 days. This means that within the number of days indicated on the offer is when the appraisal report needs to be sent to the Seller and lender for proof that the home’s value is at least what the buyer has written in the accepted offer.
Your best-case scenario is that the home appraises out and the contingency is met. Then you move forward to the loan commitment and financing contingency.
What happens if the home doesn’t appraise at or above the offered purchase price? In the Offer to Purchase, there is an appraisal contingency that states,
“This contingency shall be deemed satisfied unless Buyer, within ___ days of
acceptance delivers to Seller a copy of the appraisal report which indicates that the
the appraised value is not equal to or greater than the agreed-upon purchase price, accompanied by a written notice of termination.”
As noted above, the number of days can vary from, on average 30 - 60 depending on the length of the close.
What if it doesn’t appraise out and the buyer still wants the home? In this case, unless the buyer has a substantial downpayment, the buyer would need to bring the difference in cash to the closing. The Seller can reduce the purchase price to the appraised value or the Buyer and Seller can negotiate; each contributing in some way to an agreed-upon price. (Seller lowers price and Buyer brings less to the closing.)
Read my next blog for a few appraisal tips.