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Tolin Peterson's Blog

By Tolin Peterson | Broker in Seattle, WA

Appraisal Timelines

What’s an appraisal?  An appraisal is a separate 3rd party valuation of the subject property.  It is required by all lenders and is generally paid for by the buyer.  It usually ranges from $500-700 depending on the situation.

What’s the timeline for an appraisal?  It can take a couple days to a couple weeks to complete.  It really depends on the appraiser that’s assigned to your file, so you’ll want to make sure you have plenty of time to complete the appraisal way before your closing date.  This is because the appraisal has to be included in your file before it is submitted to underwriting.

At what point in time is the appraisal ordered?  Some first time home buyers may want to wait until AFTER the inspection is complete to order the appraisal.  However, due to the aforementioned timeline, if you want to take this approach you will usually want to ask for a 45 day close from the seller.  But depending on your competition you may not be afforded that luxury.

What if I can’t get a 45 day close?  If this is the case, you will either have to order your appraisal immediately after getting under contract, or pay extra to have the appraisal rushed.  Or maybe even both, depending on how long you have to close.  Regardless of the situation, the most important thing is that your Realtor and lender are communicating and on the same page so that everyone has realistic expectations.  The last thing you want to do is miss your close date do to a miscommunication.

Don’t make the biggest decision of your life without getting educated!  If you would like more information on transaction timelines or the home buying process in general, please go to our Calendar/Reservations page and sign up for one of our FREE First Time Home Buyer/Down Payment Assistance workshops.

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