How Long Does an Appraisal Take?

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Home appraisal is an independent estimation of your property’s worth and part of the home buying process, required by mortgage lenders before closing on a home.

But, how long does an appraisal take? In this article we’ll look into how appraisers determine value and what delays may arise during this process.


An appraiser will conduct an inspection to assess your home and assess its current state, looking at both exterior and interior surfaces, upgrades and improvements made over time, before comparing it against similar homes in your neighborhood to establish its value.

Depending on the property size and complexity, this step usually takes between 30 minutes to 2 hours to complete; however, delays could arise during busy seasons or due to bad weather conditions.

Appraisers conduct research and analyze local trends to understand the market. They use online valuation calculators to quickly get an estimated value for your home quickly. After conducting their evaluation, appraisers must write a report detailing their findings; this process typically takes between one to two weeks depending on how busy local appraisers are at that particular moment in time. When purchasing real estate, appraisers could take even longer if there is a shortage of qualified local appraisers.

Market Analysis

Once they find their dream home after months of browsing listings and bidding wars, homebuyers reach a major milestone: an offer has been accepted on it! But as they await approval of their mortgage loan by lenders and completion of closing on it, one final step that could cause delays is an appraisal of their prospective property.

An appraisal is a key part of the mortgage process because it protects lenders from loaning more than their home is actually worth. Lenders enlist an independent professional to assess its value based on in-person inspection, research into recent sales of similar properties and market trends – while the borrower pays the costs, which typically average between $300 to $450.

An appraiser typically starts off their home appraisal by inspecting its exterior, taking note of its overall condition as well as any upgrades or renovations completed, and also taking in to account what they know of its surroundings and the neighborhood.

Report Writing

Once they have all the data collected, an appraiser will produce their opinion of value – along with an explanation – of why your home is valued as it is. This process typically takes anywhere between one day to several weeks depending on their workload; when completed, their report includes adequate descriptions, market information, a signature seal and certification for your records.

Lenders require that homes undergo an appraisal prior to lending money against it, in order to prevent lending more than their worth if the homeowner defaults on their mortgage payment.

Buying a home contingent upon its passing inspection and appraisal can be a deal breaker; an appraisal that falls below expectations could mean walking away or negotiating a lower price. Furthermore, sellers could find themselves having to sell at less than anticipated prices.

Appraisal Signing

No matter if you are selling, refinancing, or getting a mortgage for the first time; an appraisal must be conducted. An impartial opinion on its value acts as collateral against potential loans; therefore it must be impartially assessed.

Location can have a dramatic effect on the value of your property. For instance, it could decrease if it’s situated next to an undesirable neighborhood or close to junkyards and powerlines.

Your home’s size, age and condition also play a factor in its appraisal. Upgrades to kitchen or bathrooms as well as energy-saving appliances will increase its valuation; an upgraded garden and fence also add value. Furthermore, homes located close to amenities such as schools or supermarkets may increase in appraisal value.