What does 97% complete mean?
Not this photo, that’s for sure!
You may hear this term if you are purchasing a new construction home and require financing.
Lenders, Mortgage Agents, Purchasers, and Builders are rarely on the same page when it comes to what constitutes a “complete” home.
A home is considered incomplete if the interior is not complete in any way; faucets, plumbing fixtures, tile, flooring, trim, painted walls, lighting, countertops, stairs, staining, cleaning for occupancy, etc.
If the completion date or delays impact your financing, ask your lender or mortgage agent if a report that includes an "as is" with percentage stage of completion and an "as complete" value based on the plans, specs, and purchase agreement is acceptable. Many lenders will accept this option, however, many lenders will not.
It is important to understand what your lenders requirements are.
A home is deemed 97% complete when the home is completely finished except for sod and driveway (3%) which can be limited to seasonal conditions.
If the home’s exterior is incomplete in any way; garage doors, fascia, siding, eavestroughs, roof, railings, porch…. Then the home is NOT 97% and most lenders will not accept the appraisal report which includes detailed photos of the home’s interior & exterior.
Delays happen. When a new build is delayed, the purchaser and builder should be in communication so there are no surprises. This is not the responsibility of your lender or your appraiser to deem the home complete. An issued Occupancy Permit or final PDI is a good indication of completion.
An appraiser is limited to the requirements specified by each lender. It is important that your mortgage agent or lender be fully aware of what is considered "complete" for financing. It is NOT the appraiser's responsibility to revisit the site repeatedly to determine completion nor is it the appraiser's responsibility if the build is delayed or if the financing is in jeopardy due to the build's status. To avoid extra costs, delays or stress related to the completion, please ensure the build is fully complete before ordering an appraisal that requires a 97% complete or greater.