What if Valuation is Higher Than Purchase Price?

What if Valuation is Higher Than Purchase Price?
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Published By Jennifer Jewell

Question: What if the valuation is higher than the purchase price?

Answer: If the property’s valuation comes in higher than the purchase price, it can benefit the buyer as it may result in a lower loan-to-value (LTV) ratio. This can lead to more favorable mortgage terms, potentially lower down payment requirements, and reduced private mortgage insurance (PMI) costs.

What if Valuation is Higher Than Purchase Price? A Favorable Outcome

In real estate transactions, the valuation of a property plays a pivotal role in determining its worth and influencing the terms of financing. When a property’s appraised value exceeds the agreed-upon purchase price, a situation known as an appraisal surplus arises. While this scenario may initially seem confusing, it often presents a favorable outcome for the buyer.

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Understanding the Implications of a Higher Valuation

An appraisal surplus, though unexpected, can have several positive implications for the buyer:

  1. Reduced Loan Amount: The buyer may qualify for a lower loan amount, as the appraised value serves as the maximum loan amount for most conventional mortgages. This can lower the borrower’s monthly mortgage payments and overall financial obligations.

  2. Improved Loan-to-Value (LTV) Ratio: The LTV ratio, calculated by dividing the loan amount by the appraised value, represents the percentage of the property’s value that the lender is financing. A higher appraised value results in a lower LTV ratio, which can potentially lead to more favorable loan terms, such as a lower interest rate.

  3. Increased Equity: Equity represents the difference between the property’s value and the outstanding mortgage balance. A higher valuation translates to greater equity for the buyer from the outset, providing a financial cushion and potential for future appreciation.

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Related Article: What Happens After the Mortgage Valuation?

Exploring the Buyer’s Options

When faced with an appraisal surplus, buyers have several options to consider:

  1. Proceeding with the Purchase at the Appraised Value: The buyer can choose to proceed with the purchase at the appraised value, paying the agreed-upon price and enjoying the benefits of a lower LTV ratio and increased equity.

  2. Renegotiating the Purchase Price: The buyer may attempt to renegotiate the purchase price with the seller, using the appraisal report as leverage to lower the agreed-upon price. However, it’s important to approach this negotiation with caution and respect for the seller’s position.

  3. Cancelling the Purchase Agreement: If the buyer is not comfortable with the appraised value or unable to reach a satisfactory agreement with the seller, they can choose to cancel the purchase agreement and seek alternative properties.

Considerations for Lenders and Sellers

While an appraisal surplus typically favors the buyer, lenders and sellers also play a role in navigating this situation:

  1. Lender’s Perspective: Lenders may require additional documentation or clarification from the appraiser to ensure the accuracy of the valuation. They may also request a second appraisal if there are concerns about the initial valuation.

  2. Seller’s Perspective: Sellers may be reluctant to lower the purchase price if they believe the appraised value accurately reflects the property’s market worth. However, they may be willing to negotiate if they are motivated to sell quickly or if they find a comparable property selling for a higher price.

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An appraisal surplus, while unexpected, can present a favorable outcome for buyers, potentially leading to a lower loan amount, improved loan terms, and increased equity. By understanding the implications of a higher valuation, exploring their options, and considering the perspectives of lenders and sellers, buyers can navigate this situation with confidence and make informed decisions that align with their financial goals and property aspirations.

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