I couldn't agree more with the other agents' input. Knowing what the market is currently doing will be invaluable to correctly pricing your home. Montana is a nondisclosure state, so sales information is not of public record. A local real estate agent will be able to access that information and share with you how to price your home. Good luck, and let me know if there is anything else I can do to help. Have a great day!
Now however, it is easier to find better search sites, such as ours at Keller Williams, that lets buyers search for specific prices, not those groups.
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Understand that the LISTING PRICE has one primary objective, to attract attention: It is not intended to be set in stone, and in many cases it is not even a good guideline toward the SELLING PRICE.
Some Sellers believe that by setting the LISTING PRICE high, they can always come down, and people will make an offer anyway: WRONG! Buyers will just bypass the property and look at houses that are within their price range. And six months from now, the Seller will slowly start lowering the PRICE, (this is called â€œchasing the curveâ€) and Buyers will be asking the question; â€œWhatâ€™s wrong with that house?â€ and â€œWhy has it been on the Market so long?â€
Other Sellers set the LISTING PRICE low, to attract multiple offers. (The correct strategy.) We are asked; â€œArenâ€™t you obligated to sell at this price if someone offers it?â€ The answer is probably not; for that to happen, you would first have to have only one offer, and secondly, the offer would have be exactly the same, down to the smallest detail, (please discuss this with your Realtor).
Another thought; Buyer will search for potential properties by groups; for example, $400,000 to $450,000, and $250,000 to $300,000. If your house is priced at $460,000 or $310,000, the Buyers will never see it. (something else to discuss with your Agent.)
Different Banks have different philosophies about pricing their properties: You cannot draw any conclusions without a good analysis.
Have your Realtor do a good CMA.
Good luck and may God bless
Nowadays, things have changed dramatically and appraisals & purchases from roughly 2005-2007 were extremely inflated.
As Don stated, your best options are to go with a CMA and/or an appraisal. Your CMA (Comparative Market Analysis) will be completed by a licensed real estate agent or broker in your area. Typically this is free, however out of respect for the work that goes into putting together a good CMA, I would recommend to you that you consider working with that agent in possibly listing your home once you're made a decision to list. At the very least, consider that agent.
At the end of the day...the free CMA and how it's presented and explained to you gives you a good idea to help you decide whether this is an agent you would like to work with or not.
If you go with an appraisal, it will cost around what Don explained ($300-$400) and will be a more accurate number because they take much more into consideration when establishing a report and value for your home. The appraisal is what the lender will require anyway if a buyer will be financing a purchase of your home.
If you ask what I recommend you do...it doesn't hurt at all to go with the CMA. A good CMA will have lots of great information for you and give you a pretty good idea of what you can expect. At that time, you can work with your agent to come up with a good selling price.
Best of Luck!
Recognize, too, that the value of appraisals varies. Appraisals when you actually buy a home can be fairly accurate. Appraisals (especially a few years ago) when people were refinancing were pure garbage.
Beyond that, of course, an appraisal 4 years old is worthless. But you're aware of that, and are asking how much to adjust that number up or down. That depends on general market conditions in your area. That also depends on whether the condition of your home has gone up or down, and whether anything has occurred in the immediate neighborhood that would affect home prices.
You've got two options. First, you can ask a Realtor to run a CMA (competitive market analysis) on your home. That will be free. Second, you can pay an appraiser to do a new appraisal. The cost for that might be--roughly--$300-$400. I'd suggest you pursue the first option, but it's entirely your choice.
Hope that helps.