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Appraiser opinions regarding home value kept falling short of homeowner expectations in March, coming in 1.77 percent lower, according to the latest Quicken Loans’ National Home Price Perception Index (HPPI). The gap has now widened four months in a row.

The latest Quicken Loans National Home Value Index (HVI) shows appraised values rose 3.30 percent year-over-year in March.

“The national average shows appraisals lower than homeowner expectations, but some cities are bucking that trend,” says Bill Banfield, vice president of Capital Markets at Quicken Loans. “With prices sprinting forward in many of the booming housing markets in the West, it can be difficult for homeowners to keep up with appraisers, who are on the ground, examining real estate price changes every day. This study is one more reminder for consumers to keep an eye on their local market before selling or refinancing. The state of their local market could affect their home’s value, on either end of the spectrum.”

A summary of the HPPI:
While home value perception varies across the country, the National HPPI shows a widening gap between what homeowners think their home is worth and the value appraisers assign. March is the fourth consecutive month of this growing trend, with appraisals 1.77 percent lower than homeowners’ estimates. On the other hand, appraisals are showing higher values than homeowners expected in some of the hottest housing markets, many of those on the West Coast.

A summary of the HVI:
Quicken Loans’ HVI, the only measure of home value change based solely on appraisal data, showed another month of growth in March. Nationally, home values rose 0.63 percent from the previous month. When viewed annually, appraised values increase an average of 3.30 percent. The study showed the strongest monthly growth in the Northeast, with a 1.78 percent increase; however, the South had the fastest annual increase, with a 4.67 percent rise in home values.

“Real estate signs are beginning to pop up, even before leaves appear on the neighborhood trees. As home selling season gets started across the country, enthusiastic buyers are battling for available homes,” Banfield says. “The increased attention to home sales has led to more competition for a relatively small inventory of homes, continuing to fuel the rising prices.”

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