There are many factors that play a role in determining the value of a Crown Point, Dyer, or Cedar Lake home.  Things like location, size, and additional improvements come to mind right off the top of my head.  There are also certain factors that (to the dismay of some sellers) play absolutely no role at all in value.  Here are the top five:

  1. What you paid for the home.  When it comes right down to it a home is worth what a buyer is willing to pay for it.  What you paid for it – whether it was last month, last year, or fifty years ago – has no impact on today’s value.  Markets go up and down, the economy changes, family financial circumstances change, but what you paid for a property when you purchased it does not affect what a new buyer will be willing to pay today.
  2. How long you have owned the home.  See above.
  3. What you owe.  This is a tricky one for some folks, especially nowadays.  Let’s say you purchased your home five years ago.  Maybe you even put a Home Equity Line on it as well.  Then your local market took a hit like many markets did around the country and you now owe more on your home than your Realtor’s Comparative Market Analysis suggests the home is currently worth.  The fact is a buyer is not going to pay $200,000 for a house that market sales history shows comparable homes are currently selling for at $140,000 in the same area.  The fact that you owe more than the home can most likely sell for does not influence what a buyer is willing to pay.
  4. Fond memories.  We all have fond memories of happy times living in our homes.  There’s the first Christmas, or the birth and/or graduation of our children.  Weddings, cookouts, birthday parties.  The great thing is you get to take all your fabulous memories with you when you move into your next home.  The bad news is those memories do not increase the value of a home where buyers moving in are looking forward to making their own brand new memories.
  5. The asking price of a home.  You can ask all you want.  But if you’re asking too high at best you can expect a low-ball offer to purchase.  At worst potential buyers aren’t even taking the time to look at your home because they aren’t inclined to try to work with what they may consider unreasonable sellers.

The bottom line: price it right at the start.  A home is only worth what a buyer is willing to pay for it.  Do your research, or work with a Realtor to do the research for you so you can see what comparable homes are selling for in your market right now.