Critique Your Home.  Are your floors damaged?  Is there a hole in your wall?  Leaky roof?  Problems like these will significantly decrease the value of your home.  It is important to get them fixed properly to increase the value of your home.  It will also show that you have up kept your home properly.

Curb Appeal.  Keep your yard neat.Remove any dead trees.  Mow your yard, cut back your tree shrubs, tidy up your flowerbeds.  If you have any toys lying around the yard, clean them up.  How does your lawn furniture look?  Maybe spruce it up a little if it is outdated.  Houses with curb appeal always appraise better.

Make Sure All Safety Equipment Works.  Make sure all smoke alarms, carbon monoxide alarms, home security alarms, etc., work.  Not only is this good for the appraisal, but it is important for your family while you still own the home.

The $500 Rule.  Things that need to be fixed, like damaged floors, broken doors or windows will decrease the value of your home.  These things will take $500 hits in the home appraisal.  As a rule of thumb, you should fix things that cost $500 and less.

Update Your Home.  Updating an outdated bathroom vanity or taking down that old wallpaper and painting the walls will increase the value of your home.  It all goes back to curb appeal.  People want to get the most for their money.  They want to know that they are investing in a nice well-kept property.

Clean.  Clean your heart out.  Wash the walls.  Clean your gutters.  Power wash decks, driveways and the exterior of your home.  It is important that you clean every nook and cranny.  You want to make sure your home is ready to be appraised at the best value possible.

Research Your Neighborhood.  Do you know what the homes in your neighborhood are selling for?  How are the homes on your street maintained?  How is your school district rated?  These are all things that are taken into consideration in the appraisal.  A great school district increases the value of your home.

Let Your Appraiser Know About Any Home Improvements.  Did you just replace your roof or HVAC system?  Let the appraiser know.  This will reflect positively on your appraisal.  A potential buyer will also feel more comfortable about purchasing a home that has updated high-cost things like these.