How To Increase Your Home’s Appraisal Value

A happy couple discussing with a real estate appraiser

Maximizing your home’s appraisal value involves several effective strategies. Start by enhancing your property’s curb appeal, which makes the first impression. Next, keep a detailed record of any home upgrades you’ve made, as this showcases the value you’ve added. Address any minor repairs to avoid detracting from your home’s worth. Additionally, a thorough deep cleaning can make your home appear well-maintained. Conducting your own comparison analysis of similar properties can also provide valuable insights. Remember, some factors are beyond your control, so focus on what you can improve.

Whether you’re selling your home, requesting your lender to remove private mortgage insurance, or applying for a refinance or other financing tied to your home’s value, an appraisal is usually necessary.

Appraisers look at many factors when assessing your home’s value. Although you can’t influence certain elements, like the values of nearby homes, there are aspects where you can make a difference.

Here are six steps you can take to enhance your home’s appeal and potentially boost its appraisal value.

Two people painting a wall white

1. Maximize Curb Appeal

Curb appeal refers to how attractive your property looks from the street. A strong curb appeal creates a positive first impression, which can draw more interest from potential buyers and increase your home’s value.

To enhance your home’s curb appeal, consider the following steps:

  • Painting the exterior of the home: Fresh paint can make your home look new and well-maintained.
  • Pruning trees: Trim overgrown branches to create a tidy and inviting appearance.
  • Mowing and raking the lawn: A neat lawn suggests that the property is well-cared for.
  • Planting flowers: Bright, colorful flowers can make your home more welcoming.
  • Weeding the flower garden: Remove weeds to keep your garden looking clean and organized.
  • Resealing minor cracks in the driveway: Fixing small cracks can improve the overall look of your driveway.
  • Upgrading your light fixtures: Modern, stylish light fixtures can enhance the exterior look of your home.
  • Adding window boxes: These can add charm and character to your home’s facade.
  • Adding a railing to the front porch: A well-designed railing can provide safety and aesthetic appeal.

If you have an existing non-attached structure, like a shed, it may add some value. However, building one solely for curb appeal typically won’t offer enough value to justify the expense. Also, maintaining the cleanliness and order of your front yard regularly can have a significant impact on curb appeal.

A woman writing in a notebook

2. Document Home Improvements

Keep thorough records of any upgrades you’ve made to your home while living there. Collect receipts or other documentation to show the appraiser. Even minor upgrades, like replacing a dishwasher or water heater, can add value by reducing immediate costs for potential buyers.

Major improvements like kitchen and bathroom remodels, a new garage door, or a finished basement typically offer the best return on investment. In contrast, highly customized or luxury upgrades often add less value relative to their expense.

Consider making some quick, low-cost enhancements before the appraisal, such as applying a fresh coat of paint to the walls or updating kitchen and bathroom hardware. These small changes can contribute positively to your home’s appraised value. Keeping detailed documentation not only helps the appraiser but also provides a clear picture of your home’s improvements for potential buyers.

An electrician repairing a wall socket

3. Address Minor Repairs

Addressing minor issues in your home before the appraisal can prevent negative marks and improve its value. Simple fixes like repairing a leaky faucet, cleaning and repairing gutters, and patching and painting over small holes from photos or wall decor can make a big difference.

If your home has experienced water damage or mold problems, prioritize these repairs, as they can significantly impact the appraised value.

Even if you plan to sell your home, making these minor repairs beforehand can enhance its overall appeal and potentially lead to a more favorable appraisal. Taking care of these issues shows that the home is well-maintained and can reassure both appraisers and potential buyers about the property’s condition.

A person cleaning the glass of a window

4. Deep Clean Your Home

While a professional appraiser assesses your home’s value objectively, a clean and well-maintained home can leave a positive impression. Although minor clutter or dirt typically won’t affect the appraisal outcome, presenting a tidy home can enhance its appeal to potential buyers.

Prioritize cleaning your home before the appraisal to showcase its best features. This is particularly important if your home hasn’t been cleaned or decluttered in a while.

You can undertake the cleaning yourself or hire a professional cleaning service for a relatively modest fee. Investing in a thorough cleaning can help your home make a strong first impression and potentially improve its appraised value. Remember, a clean home reflects pride of ownership and can positively influence the perception of your property’s value.

A woman studying appraisal comparisons

5. Conduct a Comparative Analysis

Appraisers rely on comparable homes, or “comps,” in your area that have recently sold to determine your home’s value. If the appraisal result is lower than anticipated, it’s essential to review the comps used by the appraiser.

Look for significant differences in square footage, age, condition, or features between your home and the comps. For instance, if you’ve finished your basement but one of the comps has an unfinished basement, this could affect the appraisal.

Consider conducting your comparative analysis to challenge the appraiser’s assessment if you believe it’s inaccurate. Gathering evidence and presenting your findings can potentially influence the final appraisal value and ensure a fair assessment of your home’s worth.

A couple consulting with a real estate appraiser

6. Acknowledge Limitations

While there are steps you can take to enhance your home’s appraisal value, it’s crucial to recognize and acknowledge factors beyond your control. Here are some key elements that could influence your appraisal value but are typically immutable:

  • The home’s location: The neighborhood, nearby amenities, and overall area can significantly impact the appraisal value.
  • The home’s construction quality and age: Factors like the quality of materials used and the age of the home play a significant role in its appraisal value.
  • Outdated systems: Upgrading outdated systems like plumbing or electrical can be costly and may not be feasible before the appraisal.
  • The dimensions and layout: The size and layout of the home are fixed attributes that can affect its value.
  • Local housing market conditions: Fluctuations in the housing market can influence appraisal values, regardless of individual efforts to improve the property.

While you can’t alter these factors, understanding their impact can help manage expectations and navigate the appraisal process effectively. Focus on optimizing aspects within your control to maximize your home’s overall appeal and value.


Increasing your home’s appraisal value involves a multifaceted approach that combines both proactive measures and realistic expectations. By focusing on enhancing curb appeal, documenting home upgrades, addressing minor repairs, deep cleaning, conducting a comparative analysis, and accepting factors beyond your control, you can maximize your property’s worth.

Taking action to improve curb appeal, such as painting the exterior, maintaining the lawn, and upgrading light fixtures, can create a positive first impression and draw interest from potential buyers. Keeping thorough documentation of home upgrades demonstrates the value you’ve added to your property over time, while addressing minor repairs and conducting a deep clean can enhance its overall condition and appeal.

Furthermore, conducting your own comparative analysis allows you to challenge the appraiser’s assessment if necessary, ensuring a fair appraisal value. However, it’s also important to accept factors beyond your control, such as the home’s location, construction quality, and local housing market conditions. By understanding and optimizing these aspects, you can navigate the appraisal process with clarity and confidence.

To gain accurate insight into your home’s value, consider seeking the expertise of a certified property appraisal expert. Block Appraisals, a leading property appraisal company with roots in NYC, provides comprehensive evaluations across all five boroughs. With transparent results and in-depth analysis, Block Appraisals offers property owners the clarity and peace of mind needed to navigate life’s most valued milestones.

A professional appraiser in his office

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