Appraisal myths debunked

Legally, an appraiser has to be state certified to write substantiated appraisal reports for federally-backed purchase. Also by law, you have the right to request a copy of the finished appraisal report from your lending agency. Contact Kent & Associates Appraisal if you have any concerns about the appraisal process.

Myth: The value that is assessed by the appraiser should be exactly the same as the market value.

Fact: While most states back the concept that assessed value is equal to estimated market value, this commonly is not the case. Examples include when interior remodeling has happened and the assessor has not seen the improvements, or when houses in the area have not been reassessed for an extended time.

Myth: The appraised value of a property will differ depending upon whether the appraisal is provided for the buyer or the seller.

Fact: There is no personal interest on the part of the appraiser in the outcome of the appraisal report, therefore he will conduct his work with impartiality and independence, regardless for whom the appraisal is ordered.

Myth: Any time market value is found, it should equal the replacement cost of the property.

Fact: Without any suggestion from any different parties to purchase or sell, market value is what a willing buyer would pay an interested seller for a specific house. If the home were reconstructed, the dollar amount necessary to do so would be the replacement cost.

Myth: Certain methods, like the price per square foot of the property, are what appraisers use to determine the cost of a house.

Fact: An appraisal is a collection of data concluded from the home's size, location, proximity to specific facilities, the condition of the house and the value of recent comparable sales. You can depend on Kent & Associates Appraisal's staff to be forthright in assessing this data.

Myth: When the economy is robust and the value of homes are found to be rising by a certain percentage, the other houses in the vicinity can be expected to appreciate based on that same percentage.

Fact: All appreciation of price is on a case-by-case basis, determined by data on relevant elements and the data of comparable homes. This is true in good economic times as well as bad.

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

Contact Kent & Associates Appraisal

Myth: You can often see what a property is worth simply by looking at the outside.

Fact: House worth is concluded by a multitude of variables, including area, condition, improvements, amenities, and market trends. As you can see, none of these factors can be derived simply by looking at the home from the exterior.

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

Fact: Legally, the document is owned by the lending agency unless the lender releases their interest in the document. However, home buyers must be provided with a copy of the appraisal report upon written request, under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act.

Myth: There's no reason for consumers to even concern themselves with what the appraisal contains so long as their lending agency is fine with the contents therein.

Fact: Only if consumers check out a copy of their appraisal report can they verify its accuracy and possibly need to question the result. Remember, this is probably the most expensive and important investment a consumer will ever make. There is a wealth of data contained in an appraisal that will probably be useful to the consumer in the future, such as 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 proximity.

Myth: Appraisals are ordered only to estimate home values in property sales involving mortgage-lending transactions.

Fact: Appraisers can have many varied qualifications and designations which allow them to perform a lot of different services including - but definitely not limited to - advice on estate planning, tax assessment, zoning, dispute resolution in many different legal situations and cost analysis.

Myth: An appraisal is no different than a home inspection.

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