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Homeowners across the country have a good idea what their home is worth, with the average home appraisal in August being only 0.64 percent lower than what the owner expected, according to Quicken Loans’ National Home Price Perception Index (HPPI). While the gap between the owner’s estimate and the appraisal widened a bit from the previous month, and is more than double what it was in August 2018, it is still within the range that shouldn’t cause problems in the mortgage process for most buyers or refinancing homeowners.

The HPPI at a local level is even more promising. The majority of metro areas measured had average appraisal values higher than what the owner estimated. Of the areas where the appraised valued was lower than expected, only three of them had an average appraisal value more than 1 percent lower than the owner’s estimate. The HPPI was strongest in Boston, which had an average appraisal value 2.05 percent higher than expected. Chicago, yet again, lagged all metro areas with the average appraisal 1.77 percent lower than the homeowner’s estimate.

“Homeowner perceptions have remained in a relatively tight band, with less than a percent gap between expectations and actual appraisal values, for the last two years. This is a good sign that homeowners have kept their finger on the pulse of their local housing market as home values continued to rise,” says Bill Banfield, Quicken Loans executive vice president of Capital Markets. “This is a great news for those who haven’t already tapped their growing home equity. Based on the report, they are likely to have a good estimate of their home’s value and, as a result, have a smooth process when it comes time for the appraisal in the mortgage process.”

The Quicken Loans Home Value Index (HVI), which measures home value fluctuation based on appraisals, showed both monthly and annual increases in appraised values at a national level. There was a healthy 0.95 percent growth in home values from July to August, and a strong 4.64 percent year-over-year increase.

When viewed at a regional level, three out of the four regions measured showed rising home values from July to August. The Northeast was the outlier, with a 0.36 percent dip in average appraisal value. The largest monthly gain was in the South, which had a 1.09 percent bump in home values. All four regions had gainful increases in home values when measures at an annual level. The Midwest led the nation in home value increases at 5.44 percent. The West trailed the country, but still had a worthwhile 1.93 percent increase in appraised values.

“Home values continue to reach levels never before seen. As the growth trend persists, the question everyone considers is whether we will have affordability issues,” says Banfield “The good news is that the dip in interest rates, around three-year lows, has prevented buyers from needing to adjust their budget and kept home sales strong.”

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