What items do home appraisers seek to find that would give higher home values?
The quick and easy answer would be comps (comparable homes for sale in your area) and location. We all know the first rule of real estate is location, location, location. A home across the street that might be exactly the same as yours could be valued at more because it might fall in a better school district or may not have railroad tracks behind it.
An appraisal is subjective but all appraisers should follow similar guidelines. That is to say 2 different appraisers could come to your house the same day and give you two different values. They try to find homes similar in size, location, and appeal to yours. But as we know all homes are not the same. Even in a development built but the same builder homes vary in size, location, features, views, lots etc. The appraiser will adjust the homes based on the items. Usually they have fixed costs for things, like a home with an extra half bath would add $5000 or a firplace would add $2500 to the value. There are also more subjective itees like condition, build quality, view etc. This can vary greatly and is based on the appraiser and again comps in the area.