01 January 2009

Housing Values: Checking with Online Estimators

When I checked online housing price estimators two months ago, I found a wide range of values estimated for our home, topping at a million bucks. Last night's check on the numbers removed that unrealistic option but still produced a wide range of potential values.

To permit comparison, I set my own "fair price" on the dome. It's a figure that provides profit above the original cost and reflects what I would have called a reasonable price last summer. That's when we actually thought about moving and met with a realtor—but realized all markets were working against us and we'd better sit tight. So, my X value has never been tested but I'll use it for these comparisons and I'll repeat the process in another several months.

At RealEstate.com, our home value is estimated at 68% of X.

At Yahoo! Real Estate, home values are figured with the assist of two databases, reported side by side. The value for our house from Zillow.com is 110% of X. The second one, from appraisal.com, comes in at 170% of X. Yahoo! doesn't attempt to reconcile the estimates.

A Bank of America web site also offers a range, but at least a bit narrower, at 120% to 150% of X. The values are presented as a minimum and a maximum, presumably from a single source.

So, overall, I found a remarkable value range: from 68% of X to 170% of X. Even though the majority of estimates exceeded 100% of X, I'm not counting on them. Neither am I testing them. (Sitting tight.) But I will track them this year and perhaps learn more about online estimators than about the housing market?

© 2008 Mary Bold, PhD, CFLE. The content of this blog or related web sites created by Mary Bold (www.marybold.com, www.boldproductions.com, College Intern Blog) is not under any circumstances to be regarded as professional, legal, financial, or medical advice. Or education advice. Or marital advice. Or even a tip.

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