How to find the ORIGINAL sales price

This video shows how to calculate the original price a property cost when all you know is the current price and the percent profit that was made.

WARNING, this is NOT a very mathematical approach to finding the original sales price of a property. This is a plug and play equation I compiled after watching a LOT of videos on this subject. Mathematicians would cry at the multiple steps I leave out. IF you would know the many steps it would be a much more flexible approach to math, you would understand how to manipulate the equation to know all kinds of things… but it would also be much more complicated and to  save myself losing everyone in that complicated explanation let’s just make it plug in play and let all the people who KNOW math cry at how much I’m leaving out…. But then again, all the people who KNOW math don’t need this… Anyway, SO this works for this ONE scenario, Which is, we get the sales price, we get the profit made in a percentage amount, and we’re asked to state the original price…  let’s make this as easy as possible.

My simplified real estate math equation

So here is my equation. It goes, the OG, otherwise known as the original gangster (original price) is unknown. .. Equals the current price (which they’re giving us) divided by 1.(whatever percentage they give us)

OG = CURRENT PRICE/ 1. (percentage they state was profited)

Original Price = Current Price/ 1.Percent they state

So lets say they ask

The sales price is 500,000 and they profited 29%… what’s the original price?  it would like this

OG= 500,000/1.29

Plug it into your calculator and you get $387,596.899 cents and that’s the OG Ok, its that easy.

Lets plug in other numbers to see it redone so you can see how switching numbers and percentages works just fine….Lets say they ask

The sales price is 500,000 and they profited 28%… what’s the original price?  it would like this

OG= 500,000/1.28

Plug it into your calculator and you get $390,625 and that’s the OG

So let’s do one more calculation to find the original sales price of a property

OK, so one more calculation to find the original sales price. Lets plug in one more set of numbers to see it redone and how you can switch numbers and percentages….

Sales price is $11.00 and you profited 10%

Now I think some of you could do this in your head because of the basic numbers but GOOD, lets plug it into the formula and see that it works and it works and it works

So we put the OG (what we don’t know) = 11 divided by 1.10

And we get the original price was $10

So I’ve seen a lot of tutorials on how to do these with a ton more steps that are honestly more informative for the mathematician… but again, if you don’t want to learn all the math and can learn that equation, you can do this one scenario for the test.

If you’re looking to get your WV Real Estate License and need a down to earth approach to learning these concepts, Spruce School of Real Estate offers the best online real estate course in West Virginia. Spruce has been teaching in our home state for over 28 years now and has the success rate to prove our ability to teach these otherwise confusing topics. You can enroll anytime by calling 304-744-1286 or clicking the “Sign Up” button on the home page .

If you’re shopping for a real estate math calculator you can check this out

Promissory Note Math for the Real Estate License Exam

In today’s episode of “Spruce Answers”your real estate license prep test questions we have a quick one. It reads “Using the services of a mortgage broker, a buyer borrowed $25,000 from a private lender. After the loan costs were deducted, the buyer received $24,255. What is the face value of the note? (Promissory Note)”

Ok here’s another one based on a concept more than actual math. The concept being tested on is do you know what a note is?

Flashback to the promissory note mentioned in the financing unit.

Flashback to the promissory note mentioned in the financing unit.

promissory note definition

OK, so the definition reads “a signed document containing a written promise to pay a stated sum to a specified person or the bearer at a specified date or on demand.”

So let’s examine the mystery here. Now that we know what a note is can we break this down? The question states…. “, a buyer borrowed $25,000 from a private lender. After the loan costs were deducted, the buyer received $24,255. What is the face value of the note?”

Well think about this in real life

If you borrowed $25,000 would you owe $25,000  or something less than that? Of course you don’t owe less than that, you’d owe the full $25,000. It doesn’t matter the crazy fees that were taken out of the amount prior to you getting the money. So the question states that the buyer received $24,255 (which is the figure thrown in there to make you feel like you’re crazy and has nothing to do with anything) Because the definition of a note is “a written promise to pay a stated sum” NOT WHAT THE PERSON WAS HANDED AFTER FEES. So it’s honestly that simple. The question asks “What is the face value of the note?” and that’s it. Done deal. The FACE value of the note is ….. drum roll $25,000.

Ok, now that you’ve seen the breakdown of this, did you like it’s simple explanation? If so, I think you’ve probably stumbled upon the best resource for your WV real estate license prep, Spruce School of Real Estate. Did you know that Spruce has been teaching online classes for real estate license prep in WV for close to 10 years now and has been teaching IN class for over 25 years! Spruce was the FIRST school native to WV to be approved to teach online in our home state by the West Virginia Real Estate Commission and ARELLO. That says a LOT when you think that they’ve been around to learn the best delivery methods in the fast paces world of online classes!

If you’d like to find out more info on Spruce you can find answers on their home page or feel free to reach out on their Facebook site here.

Appraised Value Math for Your Real Estate License Prep

OK in this episode of “Spruce Answers” we have a pretty hard math question that comes from the darkest depths of your real estate license prep. Let’s jump in and make it easy to understand!

So the question reads…

“If the mortgage loan is 80% of the appraised value of a house and the interest rate of 6% amounts to $460 for the first month, what is the appraised value of the house?”

Now there’s no “easy” way to accomplish this one. Because they want to know TWO unknowns. Real estate license prep all of a sudden seems VERY hard…

 You need to find (1) a mortgage loan amount and once we have that amount we can find (2) an appraised value… and the ONLY clues it gives is an amount of interest charged per month….

So let’s break down the question into three parts

  1. The mortgage loan is 80% of the appraised value
  2. The 6% interest rate amounts to $460 for the first month
  3. What is the appraised value of the house

Now that we see the 3 main parts of this I’d like to introduce a way of mentally converting the English wording of this question into a math equation. Breaking it down in this way allows me to make more sense of what we know and what we don’t know and honestly, I need to break this down as much as possible. Mathematical real estate license prep can become a lot easier is steps.

This English to math breakdown is actually quite easy.

English to Real Estate License Math Calculator
When you see the word “of” it means “to multiply”. When you see the word “is” it means “equals”.

There are two rules:

  1. when we see the word “of” in a question it will mean (multiply) and
  2. when we see the word “is” it will mean (equals)…

(so using this English to math translation part (1) of our breakdown would become…

 Mortgage loan = 80%  X Appraised Value 

Easy right?

Haha, no, not really because there are TWO unknown values in that equation. If we knew either the mortgage loan amount OR the appraised value then we could solve this using basic algebra, but the problem is they don’t give us that much info. We must solve for one first, so that we can then solve for another in a later step… so let’s look at part (2) of our breakdown and look for clues that can provide us with solving for one of the missing pieces in part (1).

The 2nd part reads “The 6% interest rate amounts to $460 for the first month”

Well that tells us the interest the loan charges in ONE MONTH but that’s not enough. We need to know how much interest it charges in a full year. Now, good for us converting 1 month into 12 months is easy. We simply take $460 x 12 and that’s the amount for the full year.

460 x 12 = 5,520

We now know that the loan amount produces $5,520

Ok, so that’s an important step so now that we know that the loan amount produces $5,520 of interest in a year and that’s at a rate of 6% we can work backwards and figure out the loan amount which is essential for plugging in the “mortgage loan” amount into the first part of this problem..

So how do we figure out the mortgage loan amount from knowing that the loan amount produces $5,520 in annual interest and they’re charging 6% to get that..

Well, is it fair to say   “ 6% of mortgage amount is $5520” ?

And if that’s fair to say, then let’s put that statement through the English to math translator where we substitute the words “of” and “is” and here is what we can conclude

6% x Mortgage Amount = $5,520

AND THAT MY FRIENDS IS SOLVE-ABLE real estate license prep

Because we are only missing ONE thing and when we’re missing just ONE thing we can do basic algebra. So let’s go through the basic algebra and solve for the Mortgage amount

Ok, we can write this .06 x Mortgage Amount = $5,520

Now do you remember how to isolate the one side of an equation from High School? It’s ok, it’s been a while for a lot of us, so let me refresh your memory if needed.

“It’s only fair to do to one side, what you do to the other side.”

Whatever you do to one side you HAVE to do to the other side. It’s really that simple. Doesn’t have to be complicated. I’ve been told by great mathematicians that “it’s only fair to do to one side, what you do to the other side.”

So as you can see we need to get that .06 OUT of the left side which we can do by dividing the entire left side by .06. When we do that the .06 on the left goes away (because it cancels out)…. but to do that we have to ALWAYS be fair, and do the SAME THING TO THE OTHER SIDE. So in this case we have to divide the entire right side by .06… which means we divide $5,520 by .06

Now what’s beautiful here is this now leaves JUST the Mortgage Amount on the left side and a NICE PLAIN NUMBER ON THE RIGHT SIDE which turns out to be $92,000… and that means we’ve figured out the mortgage amount! The mortgage amount is $92,000!!!

Now we can use that figure WAAAAY back in step 1 (from when we broke this down into 3 steps) so glance back at what we stated from step 1. We said

The mortgage loan is 80% of the appraised value.

So plug that statement into our brand new English to Math Translator

So plug that statement into our brand new English to Math Translator (and substitute “OF” with (multiply), and “is” with “=” and what do we have?

We have “the mortgage loan” = 80% x the Appraised Value

So let’s plug in our newfound mortgage loan amount and write this like such

92,000 = 0.8 x Appraised Value

We’re only missing ONE real estate license prep math variable!

Now just like earlier WE CAN SOLVE THIS WITH BASIC ALGEBRA because we are only missing ONE THING. And we find this the same way we found the earlier missing one. We isolate one side by dividing it by the amount that is there to cancel it out and then do that to the other side as well… to be fair. 😉

So in this situation we divide the entire RIGHT side by 0.8 so we can ONLY have the Appraised Value over there… and again, anything we do on one side we HAVE to do on the other side… so we then divide the entire left side by 0.8

So this looks like this

0.8 x Appraised Value/ 0.8 (on the right side) and 92,000/ 0.8 (on the left)

When we divide the right side it cancels out the 0.8 and we are left with JUST the Appraised Value and that means that the appraised value is just one step away… by dividing 92,000 by 0.8

When we divide 92,000 by 0.8 we GET $115,000 and THAT IS THE APPRAISED VALUE and is the answer the question was seeking

To anyone mathematically skilled in real estate license prep

Now, to anyone skilled in Algebra I’m sure this explanation was tedious and you might’ve even thought that it was too many steps. But honestly this breakdown is geared for those of us who haven’t seen algebra in a while… and wanted to see the many inner workings of this fairly complicated real estate problem… Thanks for bearing with me and I hope this helps someone.

Personally, I love the English to Math translator and it will be in my arsenal of math tools in the future. “Of” means multiply and “is” means equal. This MIGHT just help with many insane math problems to come.

If you found this breakdown easy to understand and have always wanted to gain your real estate license in WV look no further! Spruce School of Real Estate has been teaching online real estate classes in West Virginia since online real estate classes “was a thing”. Seriously! Are we showing our age now? Spruce was the first school native to West Virginia to be approved to teach in the distance education method of real estate license prep. For that fact Spruce KNOWS the best ways to deliver in an online world. For more info you can check out their Facebook page here. Their business page is also found here or searched using best real estate school online. Real estate license prep is made as easy as possible with Spruce’s visual showcase of otherwise hard to convey subject matter!

Discount Point Math for your WV Real Estate Licensing Exam

Today in “Spruce Answers” I’m going over the real estate math licensing concept of the discount point. This is easier than you might think . The question is… “If a house was sold for $360,000 and the buyer obtained a mortgage loan for $288,000, how much money would the buyer pay in discount points if the lender charged two points?”

What are the steps to solving this discount point math question?

I like this one because this is a pretty easy question. That is as long as you know the concept of a discount point. And since I’m trying to show how the concepts of these questions can be related to many variations why don’t I illustrate this concept here.

That said, the discount point is one percent…. Now there’s two twists on this within this question. One, it’s giving you two numbers to try and throw you off…. One of which you ignore because, well, it wants 1% of the loan amount and only one of those numbers is the loan amount.

Discount Point is 1% of the mortgage amount
A discount point is always 1% of the loan amount

It says the guy obtained a mortgage for $288,000 and that’s the number we now take 1% of. So…

Let’s calculate that… 1% of 288,000 is $2,880

Now the second twist… it says he is getting charged two points…. So… that’s 2%…. The way I do that is simply multiplying 2,880 by 2 which is $5760. Seems way more complicated than it is but if you know that a discount point is 1% you’re good to go.

Is this an easy breakdown?

Now that you’ve seen this breakdown, If you’re looking to get a real estate license in West Virginia you’ve come to the right place. Did you know that Spruce School of Real Estate has been teaching learners how to pass the WV Real Estate License Exam for over 25 years now? It has and we take pride in our presentations and easy breakdown for every kind of learning style. If you found this video tutorial helpful I think you’ll find Spruce School of Real Estate to be a smart choice for helping you learn the sometimes difficult concepts within. Feel free to find out more at

Feel free to also check us out on Facebook here and get more info on the best real estate school in the state of WV and access to a live instructor 7 days a week.

Real Estate License Math NW1/4 of the SE 1/4 of section

Difficult Real Estate License Math for your WV Real Estate License

When you’re dealing with difficult real estate license math that we need to get your WV real estate license look no further than the best school for your West Virginia Real Estate License to explain. Honestly, I post these after students request an explanation. Hopefully you can see that enrolling at Spruce School of Real Estate is as valuable as you have heard. We care that much, and we work hard to keep proving that. So, the question handed out was yet again on sections, so let’s go over some background of what we possibly know so we can weed down the difficult portions and leave the easy.

Sections are 640 square acres. How did I know that? Well I could’ve memorized it or I could use some things we should know already. Let me show you how we can know it with just the few memorized numbers we already know. We know that a section is 1 linear mile across AND DOWN correct? We also know that a linear mile is 5,280 feet because of our memory tips in our lovely WV Real Estate Online Class that you registered for.

Ok, so the next step. We know how to calculate square footage which is length times width.  That means 5,280 x 5,280 is 27,878,400 and that means that that all sections are 27,878,400 square feet. Yes ALL of them 😉

Now we also know that a square acre is 43,560 feet because of our study tips in class. So if we divide 27,878,400 by 43,560 we get 640. So that means that ALL sections are 640 acres in total. Yes, ALL of them.

Now You See Why a Section is 640 Acres?

So that’s how I knew a section represented 640 acres.  OK so lets see what we can do with that number. Sections can be divided into halves (320 acres) and quarters (160 acres). So that’s the easy part. Then it has to get more confusing because EACH of those portions can then be divided again into halves and quarters. But its not terribly hard…. Its basic math. 40 acres here, 40 acres here, 40 acres here, 40 acres here. Do you see the logic? Good!Sections explained by WV Real Estate School

Now, there a reason I went into all this BEFORE I broke down the super confusing question. And that’s because the super confusing question doesn’t have to be that confusing question IF WE KNOW WHAT I JUST STATED.  In the end the question wants us to know how many acres. They give us a bunch of gibberish in there but the reality is they want you to calculate an acreage amount by the price per acre and tell them what that total price was.

So lets look at the question and tear it apart. Let’s make this real estate license math make sense!

If a farm described as “the NW 1/4 of the SE 1/4 of section 10, Township 2 North, Range 3 West of the 6th P.M.”

It reads, If a farm described as “the NW 1/4 of the SE 1/4 of section 10, Township 2 North, Range 3 West of the 6th P.M.” sold for $4,500 an acre, what was the total sales price?

Ok, so lets think about this? They want to know the NW 1/4 of the SE 1/4 . Lets place that on our sections grid to illustrate it. North, south, east, west to help us think it through. We start with the south east quarter so that here. And then they want the north west quarter of THAT, so that’s here.

Now you wanna know something that is crazy? We didn’t even need to map that out. I did because it makes more sense to explain the real estate license math IF we map it out but ALL we needed to know here was that they wanted to know a quarter of a quarter size… Does this look familiar from earlier in the video? Good 😊

So You See the Size is 40 Acres

And guess what? A quarter of a quarter of a section. will ALWAYS BE 40 acres. It doesn’t matter if it said it wanted the SE ¼ of the NW ¼ or the NE ¼ of the SW ¼, or any of that gibberish because all sections are divided up like this and they’re ALL a liner mile up and down, and they’re always gonna be a fixed size.

It also doesn’t matter if the question read:

A farm on Planet Neptune described as “the NW ¼ of the SE ¼ of section 40, Township 20, of the eastern coast of the Bahamas, past the 400th Meridian to the southern lake” BECAUSE IN THE END THEY JUST WANTED TO KNOW THE NUMBER OF ACRES IN A QUARTER OF A QUARTER OF A SECTION. Real Estate License Math Sections

Basically everything AFTER the description of “NW ¼ of the SE ¼” is totally irrelevant to the size of the acreage we need. We KNOW the size is 40 acres and then just do basic math here. 40 acres times $4,500 is $180,000

Now why did I go over all these steps to show you this? I did it so you can plug in a wide variety of numbers, prices, and scenarios , like they might throw at you at the national testing center and you can still get an answer, regardless of them changing details. Knowing these steps can allow you to answer a wide variety of real estate license math that is dealing with sections and land descriptions now.

By the way, you CAN enroll now to take Spruce’s online real estate classes by visiting and clicking “enroll now” It’s THAT easy. You’ll then have access to the instructor for your real estate education needs all the time during your enrollment!