Common myths about appraising

It is mandated by law that an appraiser is required to be state-licensed to produce appraisals for federally-supported property sales in Washington. The law allows you to get a copy of your finished appraisal from your lender after it has been provided. Contact Kent & Associates Appraisal if you have any concerns about the appraisal procedure.

Myth: Market value has to be similar to the assessed value of the property.

Fact: It might be that Washington, like most states, validates the idea that the assessed value is no different from the market value; however, this certainly varies based on state-to-state. Interior remodeling that the assessor is not aware of and a lack of reassessment on nearby homes are exact examples of why there might be a differential in price.

Myth: Depending on whether the appraisal is done for the buyer or the seller, the opinion of value of the home will vary.

Fact: The appraiser has no vested interest in the outcome of the appraisal report and should conduct services with independence, objectivity and impartiality - no matter for whom the appraisal is written.

Myth: The replacement cost of the home will be is on par with the market value.

Fact: Market value is arrived at through what a willing buyer would likely pay a willing seller for a certain property, with neither being under duress to buy or sell. The dollar amount demanded to reconstruct a home is what shows the replacement cost.

Myth: There are certain ways that appraisers use to determine the cost of a home, like the price per square foot.

Fact: An appraisal is an assertion of data based on the property's size, location, proximity to undesirable facilities, the condition of the home and the price of recent comparable sales. You can count on Kent & Associates Appraisal's staff to be professional in assessing this information.

Myth: As homes appreciate by a certain percentage - in a strong economy - the houses nearby are expected to appreciate by the same amount.

Fact: All increase of price is on an individual basis, found by data on relevant conditions and the data of comparable properties. It makes no difference whether the economy is robust or poor.

Have other questions about appraisers, appraising or real estate in Snohomish County or Mill Creek, WA?

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Myth: Just looking at what the house looks like on the outside gives an idea of its worth.

Fact: There are a number of different variables that show the value of a house; these factors include area, condition, improvements, amenities, and market trends. There's no real way to get all of this information from just inspecting the property from the outside.

Myth: Since you're the one paying for the appraisal report when applying for the loan to buy or refinance your home, you own the produced appraisal.

Fact: The document is, in fact, legally owned by the lending agency - unless the lender "releases its interest" in the appraisal report. Due the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, any home buyer asking for a copy of the document must be provided with one by their lending company.

Myth: It doesn't concern consumers what's in the appraisal report so long as it meets the necessities of their lending company.

Fact: Only if consumers examine a copy of their report can they double-check its accuracy and possibly need to question the result. Remember, this is probably the most expensive and important investment a consumer will ever make. An appraisal can double as a record for the future, containing an incredible amount of data - including, but not limited to the legal and physical description of the property, square footage measurements, list of comparable properties in the neighborhood, neighborhood description and a narrative of current real-estate activity and/or market trends in the vicinity.

Myth: Appraisers are hired only to assess building values in home sales involving mortgage-lending deals.

Fact: Based upon their qualifications and designations, appraisers can and often do perform a variety of services, including advice for estate planning, dispute resolution, zoning and tax assessment review and cost/benefit analysis.

Myth: There's no reason to get an appraisal if you get a home inspection.

Fact: A home inspection report serves a completely different purpose than an appraisal. The job of the appraiser is to form an opinion of value in the appraisal process and through creating the report. House inspectors will compose a report that will show the condition of the property and its major components and possible damage.