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Real Estate and Floor Plan Frustrations: Why Consistency Matters

October 12 2022

floor planReal estate is one of the most inconsistent industries on the planet. Each state has a different set of rules and standards set forth by several different real estate boards and associations. Supply and demand drive the market up and down. Several factors affect whether or not you make the sale, but none are as important as accurate measurements.

Here's the thing—understanding property value and how measurement standards play a key role is vital to any real estate agent. When you are assisting the consumer with making the largest purchase of their life, you had better be consistent. One of the most important topics to focus on is how to get accurate floor plans.

Floor plan frustrations can and do occur when determining the size of a property. Should it be measured from the interior or exterior, or should you just grab a few numbers from a blueprint? Are you skilled enough to get consistent measurements every single time? Accuracy is key when it comes to consistency. Floor plans created to comply with the ANSI-Z765-2021 measurement standard help enhance consumers' understanding of space and how it relates to value. Consistent methods of measuring floor plans not only compute into accurately measured space, but provide a method that the industry can rely on for comparing one property to another.

Frustration #1: How to get accurate floor plans

The creation of a floor plan is difficult for a real estate agent to do on their own. A series of measurements are required to compile the details of a building to draft a true portrayal of the gross living area. Not only should your measurements be correct, but the numbers need to reflect an accurate depiction of the space. Handheld laser devices and manual measuring tapes can result in a huge margin of error due to operator inconsistencies. Then there is the know-how of drafting a floor plan from the data. You want the consumer to be able to rely on the finished results. Leveraging the services of industry leaders like iGUIDE® offers you a way to get accurate floor plans and a way to provide consistent measurements you can be confident with every single time.

Frustration #2: What rooms to measure

Every property is different and, as such, it may be difficult to decide which rooms should be included in a floor plan. What the ANSI-Z765-2021 measurement standard aims to do is to eliminate the confusion of which measurements are to be included in every single-family home. Rooms above grade with a minimum ceiling height of 7 feet for at least 50% of the space will be part of the gross living area represented on a floor plan. Areas with a ceiling height of 5 feet or less shall not be included. For comparable measures, an iGUIDE floor plan with advanced measurements offers a method to examine the space in both 2D and 3D.

Frustration #3: Photos alone can be misleading

A picture may be worth a thousand words but pictures alone fail to provide the entire story when it comes to the reality of space. The best way to get an accurate depiction of a home is to present it in a logical format through a precisely measured floor plan. How often have you browsed through a series of real estate photos only to discover that the floor plan was different than what you had imagined? Consistency is one of the reasons that Fannie Mae has decided to adopt the ANSI-Z765-2021 measurement standard and requires appraisers to measure, calculate and report square footage accordingly.

"Since appraisers are not inspecting the property personally for the desktop appraisal, we anticipate they will commonly receive the floor plan from a third party, so it makes sense that all parties (including the appraiser) would be using the same standards of measurement," says Fannie Mae.

Every real estate agent knows that a property appraisal can make or break a sale. So when you know how to get accurate floor plans from the start, you offer a way to present your listing with information everyone can understand from the seller, the buyer and through to the lender. According to a recent article from NAR:

"Many home buyers rely on floor plans in real estate listings to decide whether to purchase a residence, and their ability to secure financing for that transaction is often contingent on an appraisal that requires the creation of a floor plan," the brief reads. "After acquiring a dwelling, homeowners will often make floor plans to help them tackle installations, arrange furniture and complete do-it-yourself projects… [And] many jurisdictions require homeowners to submit floor plans before they renovate their property."

How to provide consistent measurements every time

Fortunately for every real estate agent, there are simple solutions to your ongoing measurement frustrations. How to get accurate floor plans every single time is to implement the same standards of measurement as Fannie Mae. In an ever-changing market, you can rely on valuable technology to provide you and your clients with a consistent defensible method of measurement. iGUIDE can help.

To view the original article, visit the iGuide blog.