Can I list my house with approximate square footage? We don't know the exact size and can't afford an appraisal right now.

Asked by OCasap, Dallas, TX Sun Sep 1, 2013

I'm selling my 1926 house. The original floor-plan was 1400 sq ft, as most of the houses in the area. An approximate 1400 sq ft have been added on though the years. We know most of it has to be from no later than the 50's, since the walls are double cedar planks! We need to sell ASAP (relo, money issues and bank issues all together), and can't afford an appraisal or a survey right now. Our agent said we can't list without that, but I've seen listings that say "measurements per seller" or "buyer must get their own measurements". What's the rule here? Can anyone tell me what's the best to do in a case like this? We're already listing it at $75 per sq ft in a 100 market...

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Dustin Baggs, Agent, McKinney, TX
Sun Sep 1, 2013
The county tax records should have that for you free of charge, you should be able to search your address and find what you need, I feel somewhat disheartened your agent hasn't helped you solve this problem, the rule here as you ask is people trying to cover there butt.
2 votes
Much of the addition was done without a permit. What issues can that have? I actually had an engineer come and produce an engineering report back a few years ago when I borrowed some money against the house with a hard money lender.
Flag Sun Sep 1, 2013
CAD only states 2,000 sq ft. Much of the addition was done without a permit.
Flag Sun Sep 1, 2013
David Whites…, Agent, Dallas, TX
Sun Sep 1, 2013
Tax Rolls are one answer and have stated that is per tax roll or you can measure the outside and do include every offset then do the math. State on listing per homeowner and buyer to verify.
1 vote
Kim Nwachukwu, Agent, Irving, TX
Sun Sep 1, 2013
I know an appraiser that will measure it for you for abut $250 and produce a footprint drawing. Send an email to and I'll pop over the information. Your agent doesn't seem to be very helpful, what a shame. You really do need a good measurement - it's money well spent.
1 vote
Dallas Texas, Agent, Dallas, TN
Sun Sep 1, 2013
Well you can get sued if you don't project close to accurate info.

FYI homes are SOLD based on $ per sq. ft. you can also loss money if you don't know accurate sq. ft.

If these additions were not approved by the city and permits WELL... that opens up entire set of other issues .

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1 vote
WOW! I never expected you to hang up on me! I know this is a complex situation, but HANGING UP?!! Is that what you call professional?!
Flag Sun Sep 1, 2013
Dixon Wong, Agent, Dallas, TX
Tue Sep 3, 2013
Dear Seller,

When you bought it, didn't you have an appraisal done to get a loan? Just use that page where it has the measurement. Otherwise you have to use the tax record number.

0 votes
Susie Kay, Agent, Dallas, TX
Mon Sep 2, 2013
Even if the square footage is written as measurement per seller you still have to have some documents to support it. The buyers will ask for that and you can't just gestimate. Your agent is right, we can't list a home and leave the measurement blank. Talk to your agent and ask for his/her best advice.

Susie Kay
United Real Estate
0 votes
Brent Rice, Agent, Plano, TX
Mon Sep 2, 2013
What does your Realtor suggest? If you don't have one, yours is a great example of how a Realtor can get you the highest price under your circumstances, probably well above what you would pay them to list it. Be smart here.
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0 votes
Kenneth "Ken…, Agent, Dallas, TX
Sun Sep 1, 2013
As my peers have stated, it's best to go by the tax rolls or an official appraisal.
0 votes
Christopher…, Agent, Camp Hill, PA
Sun Sep 1, 2013
Unless you had permits for the additions the county tax office may not have the correct SF either. You could sell yourself short if you are not close on the size. Break out the measuring tape and measure the home yourself, this way you will atleast have a close number. Best of luck to you.
0 votes
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