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How To Evaluate Your Home's Value.

Have you ever wondered how real estate agents determine how much your property is worth?  The most important tool to have when determining a properties value is having access to MLS data with recent sold data.  Professional real estate agents use MLS sold listings to help them evaluate your properties value.  When trying to evaluate your home or investment property’s value, it is important to weigh in certain attributes. Important factors are your home's location, condition, total size, lot size, views, etc.  Also, the most recent comparable properties are best for determining a home’s value.  If a home sold over a year ago in your neighborhood, it is probably not a good comparable to look at.  Properties sold within a few months of today’s date are best.  

The location of your property is important. Comparing properties in the same neighborhood, but different locations in the neighborhood, it can make a big difference on the property’s value.  For example, if one property is located near the freeway and there is a lot of highway noise, and the other property is on a quiet cul-de-sac, the property in a quiet location will most likely sell for more money, if all other factors are similar. A corner properties may sell higher than a property with homes on each side.  A home with no neighbors in the rear yard can be more valuable than one with a rear yard neighbor.  

A home's condition is extremely important when evaluating the value.  A home with a brand new $50,000 kitchen and bathroom remodel will most likely sell higher than a similar home with a 30-year old kitchen and bathroom.  Most buyers get financing to purchase their home.  If a home needs a lot of work, some buyers typically do not have the capital or the time to remodel their new home and therefore, a remodeled home can have a premium price.  If your over-improve your home for its neighborhood and price point, you may not get the money you spent on improvements. Deciding to remodel can be tricky.  Sometimes it is best to make minor cosmetic updates than spending a lot of money remodeling your property.  It is a matter of opinion on what upgrades or cosmetic updates are helpful in selling a home.  It is important to have an experienced agent to help you with these decisions before you overspend or spend money in the wrong upgrades.  When searching sold Oahu single-family homes, condos or townhouses with Hawaii Homes International website, our MLS feed will provide sold properties with pictures.  Pictures can give you an overview of the comparable homes that sold condition to help you determine your home’s value.

Another factor in determining your home's value is the view.  A similar single-family home, condo or townhouse with fabulous ocean views will typically get a higher price on Oahu.  An example of extreme differences in view is a condo in high-rise buildings located in Honolulu.  Two similar condo units, one on the third facing another building would not get the same price as a unit on the fortieth floor facing diamond head and the ocean.  Hawaii views can be spectacular and they can make a big difference in value.  Sometimes it can be difficult to determine view premiums.  The best comparable when trying to evaluate a condo in a high-rise is by comparing sold units in the same building.  Unfortunately, there are times when it is difficult to find a recent sale with the same view.  Comparing the same high-rise condo building is also important since each high-rise building has different amenities, different monthly maintenance fees and built in different years. 

The size of your home, condo, or townhouse is also important.  Since it is difficult to find the same exact size home and lot that recently sold in your neighborhood or building, many people will estimate the value by using a price per square foot.  If all the comparable MLS sales are selling for $100 per square foot in your neighborhood or building, you may be able to estimate the value using this formula.  Although this may seem logical, it is not always accurate.  Two similar homes or condos with different sizes may sell for different prices per square foot.  For example, smaller homes, townhouses, and condos tend to sell for a higher price per square foot than larger properties in the same neighborhood.  For single-family homes and townhouses, the lot size can also be a big factor in the price per square foot. For obvious reasons, a single-family or townhouse with a larger lot will sell for more than one with a smaller lot.  This could impact the price per square foot dramatically.  Also, the condition could make a big difference in the sale price per square foot.  Even two condos that are exactly in the same condition and have the same view, can sometimes sell for a different price per square foot.  Typically, a large condo can sell for less per square foot than the smaller ones.  Therefore, using an average sales price per square foot for all comparable sales in your neighborhood or condo building is not always accurate. 

We provide you, free of charge, access to MLS sold listings here.  Just search for the sold properties that are similar to yours and view the details and pictures.  An experienced real estate agent can help you with all the difficult task of estimating your home’s value.  At Hawaii Homes International, this service is free.  Listed below are the 20 most expensive properties sold through MLS in the last 30 days on the island of Oahu, Hawaii.  

Highest Sold Properties in Past 30 Days on Oahu, Hawaii