can a home buyer change her mind after the appraisal is done?

Asked by Smithre2, Gautier, MS Tue Jul 21, 2009

Appraisal came in consderably lower than expected. Want to re-negotiate offer.

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Damion Flynn, Agent, Saucier, MS
Tue Jul 21, 2009
Your agent should be able to answer this question for you as long as you have your own agent and are not working directly with the agent of the seller (you need to be represented in agency capacity, not in a custoemr or dual agency scenario).

If you are financing the property and the appraisal came in below the contract price, our standard Realtor sales contracts have contingencies for appraisal. If the box was checked that it is subject to appraisal, and the appraisal came in below the contract price, then you are not obligated to complete the purchase but the seller is not obligated to reduce price either.

If you were expecting a higher appraisal for equity purposes but the appraisal still came in high enough to support the purchase agreement, then you are still obligated to complete the purchase or forfeit your earnest money.

All that being said, if you are happy with the property and the price, and the appraisal was high enough to support financing - why wouldn't you consummate the transaction? It is, after all, the same property and price. As long as there were no material changes or defects. If something else is bothering you, talk it over with your agent.
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Dallas Texas, Agent, Dallas, TN
Tue Jul 21, 2009
No professional can make a comment unless all the documents have been reviewed. If you have a buyers agent they need review performance clause of both buyer and seller with you.

However if appraisal is low vs. executed sales offer then seller can never sale the home not many home buyers have extra funds make up the difference OR lender may not loan money on home over valued.

Your buyers agent should have comp the property prior to any money spent worked with listing agent in order submit a fair sales offer IF appraisal did come in low.

It depends on difference seller might not be able sale property unless it now a short sale, or reduces price work with appraised value IF so he could be out money at closng by time realtors fees, closing costs are back out and etc.

GOOD luck !

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Bill Eckler, Agent, Venice, FL
Tue Jul 21, 2009
Bummer......... this is a trend that buyers, sellers and agents should be focusing on and trying to avoid. Since the bank will likely not finance a home that does not appraise for the selling price it leaves you with re-negotiating.

Your document should contain a clause that clarifies appraisals. Refer to this document and get your agent after the sellers agent to see if they will modify the price from their end.

Good luck
The Eckler Team
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Heather Peck, Home Owner, Las Vegas, NV
Tue Jul 21, 2009
It should be spelled out in the contract. Here in Las Vegas, our standard contract contains a clause that addresses appraisals and it basically states that if the property doesn't appraise the buyer can: a) pay the difference in price between what it appraised for and the offer price; b) renegotiate the price or; c) cancel the deal. If the property appraises for more than the accepted offer price, why would you want to change your mind.
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Fred Griffin, , Tallahassee, FL
Tue Jul 21, 2009
Read your contract.

It probably has a contingency clause regarding the Appraisal.

Best wishes to you,
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Irina LaMar, , Fairfax, VA
Tue Jul 21, 2009
If the contract contains appraisal contingency, then lower appraisal can be a reason for the sales price re-negotiation. I will strongly recommend buyers to include appraisal contingecy in their offers on the property.

All the best!
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