U.S. Home Prices Fall Amid Brutal Winter Cold

  By CHRISTOPHER S. RUGABER WASHINGTON — U.S. home prices fell for the second straight month in December as brutally cold weather, tight supply and higher costs slowed sales. The Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller 20-city home price index declined 0.1 percent from November to December, matching the previous month’s decline. The index isn’t adjusted for seasonal…

Real Estate Q&A: Are There Standard Ways to Determine How Much a Home Is Worth?

A: Yes. A comparative market analysis and an appraisal are the two most common and reliable ways to determine a home’s value. Your real estate agent can provide a comparative market analysis, an informal estimate of value based on the recent selling price of similar neighborhood properties. Reviewing comparable homes that have sold within the…

How to Prepare for Appraisal

With the spring home-buying season approaching, the nation’s largest professional association of real estate appraisers encourages homeowners to be prepared with all relevant property information when an appraiser visits. Contrary to incorrect interpretations of appraiser independence requirements, appraisers welcome information that would assist development of a reliable, credible opinion of value. Consumers can accompany appraisers…