Real Estate by Debbie Reynolds: Things That Do Not Determine A Home's Value

Things That Do Not Determine A Home's Value

Seller's Have Biased Opinions of their Home Values

ZillowMany have their own opinions based on how they feel about their homes and their own evaluation. Some check online evaluation services and this is very misleading. The truth is the value is determined by what a buyer is willing to pay. If the buyer is using a mortgage then the value may be determined by an appraiser working for the lender. Appraisers use data based on past sales. They do not use emotions and use an arms length evaluation to arrive at the value. 


These items do not determine a home's value.

  • What you paid for the home.
  • How much you have invested into the home.
  • How much you owe on the home.
  • What the tax assessor says.
  • What Zillow says.
  • How many bills you want to pay off with the proceeds.
  • How much you will have to pay to buy a new home.
  • How much you value it and love the home.
  • What a great floor plan you think you have.
  • How much better than you think your home is than others in the neighborhood.
  • Improvements you made that overbuilt your neighborhood.
  • How much you have loved living there.
  • How many compliments you have received from friends and family.
  • How pretty or expensive your furnishings are.
  • The good times and memories you have made while living in the home.

A good local real estate agent can give you an evaluation of the real value of your home. Agents use the same basic steps of comparing homes to closed homes that appraisers do. Local agents know trends and what is happening in the neighborhoods. Local agetns have local experience. Listen to the recommendation of your local agent.


In Clarksville TN, contact the agent that knows the market, The Real Debbie Reynolds at 931-320-6730

 Centruy 21 Platinum Properties2130 Wilma Rudolph Blvd.

Clarksville, TN 37040

When you need Real Estate services in Clarksville TN

                  it would be my pleasure to assist you!                             

Debbie Reynolds
"The Real Debbie Reynolds"

Check out all Clarksville TN Real Estate on My Website

931-771-9070 Office | 931-320-6730 Cell

Clarksville TN Homes 


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Comment balloon 59 commentsDebbie Reynolds • May 29 2016 07:20PM


Good morning Debbie. Oh how true! Why don't people listen? Enjoy your day!

Posted by Wayne Martin, Real Estate Broker - Retired (Wayne M Martin) over 2 years ago

LOVE THIS Debbie Reynolds as i have heard many of these over the years at listing appointments

Posted by Scott Godzyk, One of Manchester NH's Leading Agents (Godzyk Real Estate Services) over 2 years ago

Good Morning Debbie - as an experienced real estate agent you have heard all of them many times.  It can be summed up in one word - Market!

Posted by Grant Schneider, Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes (Performance Development Strategies) over 2 years ago

Great post, Debbie.  And so true.  I run into these regularly.  And, I would respectfully like to add that a home is not worth what the neighbors say it's worth either.

Posted by Gabe Sanders, Stuart Florida Real Estate (Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales) over 2 years ago

Great Post Debbie Reynolds ! I run into these "Values" all the time.

Posted by Peter den Boer, MBA,GRI, Associate Broker, Realtor (Atlanta Communities) over 2 years ago

This is excellent advice to share with prospective home sellers.

Posted by Roy Kelley (Realty Group Referrals) over 2 years ago

Debbie, Amen to your post - so true! You know what truly determines a homes value and anyone considering selling in Clarksville would be wise to enlist your expertise. 

Posted by Amanda S. Davidson, Alexandria Virginia Homes For Sale (Amanda Davidson Real Estate Group ) over 2 years ago

HI Debbie Reynolds - This list is one of the toughest areas we have to deal with when listing homes.  It's like chopping your way through a field of weeds!

Posted by Sheri Sperry - MCNE®, (928) 274-7355 ~ YOUR Solutions REALTOR® (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage) over 2 years ago

Debbie great list of myths home sellers trick themselves into believing.  From time to time I run into folks that buy into this fairytale and that's a story I can't finish!

Posted by Anna Banana Kruchten CRB, CRS 602-380-4886, Arizona's Top Banana! (Phoenix Property Shoppe) over 2 years ago

Hi Debbie, I would also add "what family/friends think the value should be". Sellers hire professionals to get their homes sold, it's best to trust them.

Posted by Beth Atalay, Cam Realty of Clermont FL (Cam Realty and Property Management) over 2 years ago

This is a great post.  I love your statement about "What Zillow says".  So many sellers hang their hat on that darn Zestimate!

Posted by Belinda Spillman, Colorado Living! (Aspen Lane Real Estate Colorful Colorado) over 2 years ago

All great points, Debbie Reynolds !  So often sellers have inflated ideas about the value of their home, and those Zestimates don't help.  A true real estate professional can provide great insights on what the real market value is!

Posted by Lynnea Miller, Premier Real Estate Service in Central Oregon (Bend Premier Real Estate) over 2 years ago


This is so right on target. It's pretty common for homeowners to have beliefs that certain things bring more value to a home, and that buyers will pay for this. Talk to most buyers these days and they'll tell you how wrong that assumption is.


Posted by Jeff Dowler, CRS, The Southern California Relocation Dude (Solutions Real Estate ) over 2 years ago

You nailed it with that list.  When it is all said and done it is the prospective buyer who determines value.

Posted by Gary L. Waters Broker Associate, Bucci Realty, Fifteen Years Experience in Brevard County (Bucci Realty, Inc.) over 2 years ago

Great list and zillow being the biggest problem.  We need to take back our Profession.

Posted by William Feela, Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No. (WHISPERING PINES REALTY) over 2 years ago

Hi Debbie - You make a great point about what goes into a common mistake that many sellers make. A good pricing recommendation from a competent professional may not be what they want to hear, but it's what they will be dealing with.

Posted by Dick Greenberg, Northern Colorado Residential Real Estate (New Paradigm Partners LLC) over 2 years ago

I was just speaking to my fellow agents at the office today about how Zillow has too many people believing they are a REALTOR after doing a few weak searches and comparables. Thanks for sharing!

Posted by Lorenzo Francis, Multi-State & International Sales (Select Brokers, LLC) over 2 years ago

Debbie that is a good list.  When it comes to selling it is all about the Buyer, and Buyers do not care what the Sellers financial challenges are.

Posted by George Souto, Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert (George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages) over 2 years ago

This is a great post Debbie Reynolds - I chuckled as I read but I have truly heard some of these shared directly from potential sellers  -  

Posted by Maria Sapio, Real Estate Agent- Carlisle, PA. (Keller Williams of Central PA) over 2 years ago


Your points on the items that do not determine a homes value are right target.

Good luck and success.

Lou Ludwig

Posted by Lou Ludwig, Designations Earned CRB, CRS, CIPS, GRI, SRES, TRC (Ludwig & Associates) over 2 years ago

What a fantastic list, Debbie!   Would you mind if I use this in my power point presentation with sellers?  We talk about it after the presentation (pricing) so, this list could help ease the blow if they are expecting a higher value!!  Thanks for sharing!

Posted by Debe Maxwell, CRS, Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods ( | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310) over 2 years ago

Excellent list Debbie!  I often hear " the house down the street is listed for ...and my house is way nicer than that one"!  I have to explain the list price and market value aren't always the same. I could list my house for a million dollars but it certainly wouldn't sell for anywhere near that

Posted by Terry McCarley, REALTOR, SRES, CDPE - Cape Coral, FL (REMAX Realty Team - Cape Coral FL) over 2 years ago

I hear something from your list on just about every listing I go on!

Posted by Woody Edwards, A Realtor® Who Answers His Phone! (First Choice Realty, Inc) over 2 years ago

Good morning again Debbie. This is terrific and valid too. Good thoughts well done here.

Posted by Sheila Anderson, The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133 (Referral Group Incorporated) over 2 years ago

Excellent post, Debbie.  Everything on the list is something we hear all too often. I am currently working with a client that is willing to pay $20,000 over market value on a home that is listed $40,00 over current market and the Seller won't even consider anything less than their list price.  Thank you for posting!

Posted by Rebecca "Becky" Joens, Broker- Associate, SFR, RE Instructor (ASHTON REALTY GROUP) over 2 years ago

Terrific post!  I love the title too, great for SEO and I am sure many will stop by!

Posted by Kristin Johnston - REALTOR®, Giving Back With Each Home Sold! (RE/MAX Realty Center ) over 2 years ago

Excellent message delivered by your post, Debbie Reynolds ... and all too often difficult lessons for sellers to learn or digest ...


Posted by Gene Mundt, IL/WI Mortgage Originator - FHA/VA/Conv/Jumbo/Portfolio/Refi, 708.921.6331 - 40+ yrs experience (NMLS #216987, IL Lic. 031.0006220, WI Licensed. APMC NMLS #175656) over 2 years ago

Loved this so much I put it all over social media.  Shout it from the rooftops!

Posted by Dale Taylor, Realtor = Chicago Illinois Homes Townhomes Condos (Re/Max 10 New Lenox Illinois) over 2 years ago

I have told clients the same exact thing!

Posted by Anne Corbin, Serving Lake Anna & Central Virginia (Long and Foster - Lake Anna) over 2 years ago

I've found sellers to have either one of two objectives; one to sell their property or two to make an unreasonable amount of money to sell their property. Most agents, I've found will secure the listing regardless of the comparable market sales simply to tie up the property and eventually reduce the price till it's sold. 

Posted by Kimo Jarrett, Pro Lifestyle Solutions (WikiWiki Realty) over 2 years ago

I might add a couple: 

  • What your neighbor sold for X number of years ago.
  • What your brother's similar home sold for in another city or state. 

Listen to your own LOCAL agent who has up-to-date market information! 

Posted by Marte Cliff, Your real estate writer (Marte Cliff Copywriting) over 2 years ago

Fabulous post Debbie Reynolds .  You hit so many great points that we see everyday in this business.  I also agree with Marte Cliff  by sharing the addition of "What your neighbor sold for X number of years ago."  This is good stuff!

Posted by Diana Dahlberg, Real Estate in Kenosha, WI since 1994 262-308-3563 (1 Month Realty) over 2 years ago

Great post Debbie.

Posted by Lyn Sims, Schaumburg IL Real Estate (RE/MAX Suburban) over 2 years ago

I also really dislike when a buyer looks up what someone paid for something and thinks their offer should reflect that... Ugh!  Nothing to do with current market value.

Spot on post!

Posted by Tammy Lankford,, Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville (Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668) over 2 years ago

I would be on the ground laughing at your list because it's so funny.  Problem is, it's also true!

Posted by Margaret Goss, Chicago's North Shore & Winnetka Real Estate (Baird & Warner Real Estate) over 2 years ago

This is a great list of the things that do not matter to a buyer.  Especially when it comes to how much the seller NEEDS from the home in order to buy their next home.  Thank you for sharing!

Posted by Karen Feltman, Relocation Specialist in Cedar Rapids, Iowa (Cedar Rapids/Iowa City, IA KW Legacy Group) over 2 years ago

This is one of the best posts I've read about home valuation!  EXCELLENT!!  Really a great post.  It's not about emotions.  It's about fair market value, and one thing that does not equate is . . . ALL OF THE ABOVE!!  Great post Debbie Reynolds 

Posted by Carla Muss-Jacobs, RETIRED (RETIRED / State License is Inactive) over 2 years ago

Super post.  Yes, you have to look at the value objectively and how a buyer would value it.  And, yes, what you paid for it/invested in it does not usually reflect fair market value.

Posted by Debbie Gartner, The Flooring Girl & Blog Stylist -Dynamo Marketers (The Flooring Girl) over 2 years ago

I listened to a seller tonight rave on about how he changed out all the doorknobs and put in a new HVAC system. Hate to break it to ya, there, but those things don't count. That's what I should have said. Instead I said, oooo, I hope the doorknobs were brass.

Posted by Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you (RE/MAX Gold) over 2 years ago

Excellent list.  How many times have we heard these phrases.  Nod your head up and down, then tell them exactly what how to sell it!

Posted by Jan Green, HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN (Value Added Service, 602-620-2699) over 2 years ago

I wish that this list could be required reading for anyone wanting to put their home on the market!  Talk about a reality check they'd have .... way too many people don't realize how a home's value is determined.

Posted by Maureen Bray Portland OR Home Stager ~ Room Solutions Staging, "Staging that Sells Portland Homes" (Room Solutions Staging, Portland OR) over 2 years ago

My favorite is, "everybody loves this home." You definitely hear that.

Posted by Jill Sackler, LI South Shore Real Estate - Broker Associate (Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. 516-575-7500) over 2 years ago

Hi Debbie, all great points. I've had an PhD in Economics tell me what his girlfriend thought the home was worth.

Posted by Olga Simoncelli, CONSULTANT, Real Estate Services & Risk Management (Veritas Prime, LLC dba Veritas Prime Real Estate) over 2 years ago

It is very hard for an owner to disassociate themselves from the reality of the commodity they are trying to sell and the home they lived in for so many years.

Posted by Ed Silva, Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally (RE/MAX Professionals, CT 203-206-0754 ) over 2 years ago

Absolutely, Debbie!  The potential buyer won't have the same emotional attachment to the home as the seller, whom have spent time creating memories there, so it's important for them to have the 3rd Party to show them that "realistic" value vs. their emotionally attached "perceived" value.  Of course, that is if they are serious about selling.  It's a difficult job to handle the seller's emotion when discussing value.

Posted by Mike Bjork (CMG Financial) over 2 years ago

Great list, might have to steal that and put it in my listing presentation.

Posted by Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line (Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400) over 2 years ago

A home is worth what a buyer is willing to pay for it. How you prepare and present that home can have a lot to do with a buyer's perceived value of it.

Congrats on the well deserved feature!

Posted by Sharon Tara, New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations) over 2 years ago

I have to chuckle when I read that list. So many consumers believe those things are true!

Posted by Donna Foerster, Metro Denver Real Estate Agent (HomeSmart Realty Group) over 2 years ago

way to go  Debbie Reynolds  what a wonderful list you have put together ..  I hope sellers are reading this post

Posted by Hannah Williams, Expertise NE Philadelphia & Bucks 215-953-8818 (Re/Max Eastern inc.) over 2 years ago

Probably should be the first page of any listing presentation. It could save a lot of time.

Posted by Steven Beam, Parker Colorado Real Estate (RE/MAX Alliance - Parker Colorado Real Estate.) over 2 years ago

Very well said!!!

The truth is the value is determined by what a buyer is willing to pay. If the buyer is using a mortgage then the value may be determined by an appraiser working for the lender. Appraisers use data based on past sales. They do not use emotions and use an arms length evaluation to arrive at the value. 

Posted by Sham Reddy, CRS (H E R Realty, Dayton, OH) over 2 years ago

Thanks Debbie for this remider to us in the real estate industry, but also for that seller who wants you to list their home. I have taken this blob nd shared it with my sphere of influence, fellow agents, and many of the social media groups I am subscribed to.



Posted by Paul Durry, Broker Associate, CDPE, CIAS, CHMS (National Mortgage Field Services) over 2 years ago

Yes, this is a great list; many people who want to sell their house do believe the items in your list should define the price.

I would another one -- "what your neighbor's house is listed for". 


Posted by Kat Palmiotti, The House Kat (Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, over 2 years ago

Excellent post for illustrating the facts to future clients who are selling their properties. Many homeowners believe that their property will sell for the same market value as their neighbors have regardless of the upgrades and amenities and more importantly, the location.  

Posted by Kimo Jarrett, Pro Lifestyle Solutions (WikiWiki Realty) over 2 years ago

Yes, what you've shared here is info many sellers need to see before selling.

Posted by Michelle Carr-Crowe Just Call 408-252-8900 Top 1%!, Family Helping Families Buy & Sell Homes 40+ Years (Get Results Team...Just Call (408) 252-8900! . DRE #00901962 . Licensed to Sell since 1985 . Altas Realty) over 2 years ago

Hi Debbie

I'm revisiting as I saw Roy's reblog but wasn't sure I had read it. It's a good one. It's always interesting to hear what prospective sellers feel, or hope, impacts their home's value. The reality is sometimes hard to hear!


Posted by Jeff Dowler, CRS, The Southern California Relocation Dude (Solutions Real Estate ) over 2 years ago

This is fantastic, so true!

Posted by A H over 2 years ago

Potential sellers would do everyone, especially themselves, a favor if they would order an independent appraisal before considering contacting a real estate broker.  Knowing your home's market value can help determine whether selling is a real option. 

Posted by Mike Carlier, More opinions than you want to hear about. over 2 years ago

Debbie Reynolds "Appraisers use data based on past sales. They do not use emotions and use an arms length evaluation to arrive at the value."

Right on target - and - re-blog!

Posted by Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers, Serving Scottsdale, Phoenix and Maricopa County AZ (BVO Luxury Group @ Keller Williams Arizona Realty) over 2 years ago