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Here are 3 ways to get your property appraised

One thing that many people who go through divorce deal with is deciding if they should keep or sell a home. Homes may contain many good memories, and some people want to keep them as a result. However, the value of the home may make it necessary to sell it to split profits or to sell it to avoid payments that you can't make on your own.

What you have to do is determine how you want to value the home, and then get an appraisal early on. Once you have this information, you can make a better decision about what to do with your home.

Valuing your home

While many people want to place value on the memories and times they shared in their homes, the reality is that the value is actually determined by local markets. While you and your spouse could opt to value the home differently based on your preferences, there are legitimate ways to find out its worth to others.

How can you appropriately value a home?

You can value a home in a few different ways. Here are a few options and descriptions of how to value your property.

1. Online tools

Online, you may find a variety of tools to determine the value of your home. The value is determined by looking at public records, tax assessments and other factors. Then, the tool comes up with an estimate.

2. Competitive market analysis

Another option is to get a competitive market analysis. This includes a real-estate agent's estimate on the value of your home. This value is typically assessed based on local sales of similar properties.

3. Professional appraising

Normally the best option, hiring a professional appraiser helps you get the most accurate valuation for your property. The appraiser can estimate the value of the home based on at least three factors including the cost of similar properties, the property itself and the market (including where the home is located, the neighborhood, the region and city). This is usually the most accurate way to get a valuation, and around a fourth of homeowners turn to a professional when trying to get a valuation.

Why do you need a true valuation of the property?

In divorce, you need a true valuation of the property to know how much it's really worth. Knowing that your home could sell for $50,000 versus $500,000 could make a significant difference in how you distribute other property, such as retirement accounts or bank accounts. It may also help you decide if you should sell the home or keep it.

These are a few things to consider about getting a valuation of your property for divorce. Both spouses may want to get separate valuations and compare them for the most accurate appraisal.

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