Unfortunately, the value of your home isn't determined by your mortgage balance or how much you want or need to net when you sell. Although that would be nice, in reality how much your home will sell for is impacted by some factors you can control and others that you can't.
- the market – no one likely needs to tell you that this has been a huge factor the last few years! your value will largely be determined by what comparable homes in your neighborhood (1-mile radius) have been selling for in the last six months
- location – not much you can do about that, but both your neighborhood and your specific lot and setting play an important role in determining your value… the more unique (good or bad), the more significant a role it will play
- style, size, amenities – you aren't likely to be doing a major remodel/addition to sell your home, so it is what it is… again, the more unique your property is compared to other homes in your neighborhood the bigger role this will play
- condition – with the popularity of HGTV buyers expect homes selling for top dollar to be move-in ready and staged to look like model homes… at the other end of the spectrum, buyers expect a price significantly below market value for homes requiring work
Price is so important because it takes all of the above factors into consideration. Once you determine estimated market value based on comparable sales, you have some control over how quickly your home will sell based on where you set your asking price in relation to market value.