Behrens Appraisal Services has answers to "Frequently Asked Questions"
Describe an appraisal
Describe an appraisal(See list of FAQ's) An appraisal report is an estimation that concludes with an opinion of value. The appraiser will use a few "approaches," typically three, to conclude the estimation of market value. The Cost Approach is one of the processes that real estate appraisers use to find the value of a house; it involves finding what the improvements would cost less physical degradation, plus the land value. Easily the most common approach in finding the likely sales price of a home is the Sales Comparison Approach which concerns concluding a comparison to comparable homes nearby. Being the most popular approach, the Sales Comparison Approach tends to be the most accurate and best indicator of market value for a property. One of the least common approaches in appraising homes is the Income Approach, which is mainly used to figure the market value of a property based on what an investor would pay based on the income produced by the property.
Describe what an appraiser does(See list of FAQ's) An appraiser produces a professional, unbiased determination of market value, in the support of real property transactions. Appraisers demonstrate their analysis in appraisal reports.
What are the reasons someone would require services from Behrens Appraisal Services?(See list of FAQ's) There are a lot of reasons to get an appraisal with the usual reason being real estate and mortgage transactions. Some other reasons for getting an appraisal include:
How is an appraiser different than a home inspector? (See list of FAQ's)Appraisers do not do perform home inspections and are not home inspectors. The point of a home inspection is to evaluate the structure of the home from basement to rooftop. The archetypal home inspector's report will include an evaluation of the condition of the home's heating system, central air conditioning system (temperature permitting), interior plumbing and electrical systems, the roof, attic, and visible insulation, walls, ceilings, floors, windows and doors, the foundation, basement, and visible structure.
My agent performed a CMA for me. Is that the same as an appraisal?(See list of FAQ's) Frankly, it's apples and oranges. The CMA uses market trends to create most of their business. The appraisal depends on similar definite comparable sales. Also, the appraisal verifies other factors like condition, location and building prices. The CMA will provide a non-specific figure. Delivering a defensible and careful analysis, an appraisal will give a clear opinion of value.
But the biggest difference is who's doing the report. Real estate agents produce CMA's, and they don't always know the whole market or bear specific competence when it comes to home valuation. The appraisal is created by a licensed, certified professional who has made a career out of valuing properties. Likewise, the agent has something at stake since they get a commission based on the property's selling price whereas the appraiser is bound by a code of ethics to accept a flat fee for work they perform, regardless of their outcome.
What are the contents of an appraisal report? (See list of FAQ's)The main purpose of an appraisal report is to give a value opinion, and depending on the scope of the report, one will customarily see the following:
After completing the appraisal, what assurance is there that the value indicated is accurate?(See list of FAQ's) In the documentation of an appraisal, each appraiser must make sure of the following:
Who do appraisers work for?(See list of FAQ's) Commonly, appraisers are hired by lenders to render a value opinion on real estate involved in a loan transaction - to make sure the subject is truly adequate collateral for the loan. Attorneys and CPAs also retain the services of appraisers for asset division and estate settlements.
Where does an appraiser get the information used to estimate values in Pottawattamie County or other areas?(See list of FAQ's) One of the primary activities of an appraiser is to gather data. Data can be described as either Specific or General. Specific data is from the home itself; Location, condition, amenities, size and other specific data are gathered by the appraiser while on site.
General data is received from a many sources. Local Multiple Listing Services (MLS) provide data on recently sold homes that might be used as comparables. Tax records and other courthouse documents verify actual sales prices in a market. Appraisers often need to report when a property lies in a flood zone, and that information is retrieved from a FEMA data outlet such as a la mode's InterFlood product.
And most importantly, the appraiser assembles general data from his or her collective knowledge gained from creating appraisals for other houses in the same market.
Why do I need a professional appraisal?(See list of FAQ's) If you're involved in some sort of financial decision and the value of your home is relevant, you'll want an appraisal. If you're selling your house, an appraisal will help you determine a price that maximizes profit and reduces time on the market. If you're buying, it makes sure you don't overpay. If you're engaged in an estate settlement or divorce, it ensures that property is divided fairly. A house is often the single, largest financial asset anybody owns. Don't make decisions in the dark with a professional appraisal.
My mortgage statement has an item on it for PMI? Can I get rid of that?(See list of FAQ's) PMI is an acronym for Private Mortgage Insurance. PMI guards the lender in case a borrower doesn't pay on the loan and the value of the house is less than the balance of the loan. You can have your PMI dropped once you've achieved 20% equity in your home through appreciation and principal payments.
Does the appraiser need anything from the homeowner in advance?(See list of FAQ's) The first step in most appraisals is the property inspection. What this entails is the appraiser, after setting up an appointment, personally going through the home - recording the layout of the rooms, taking photos and documenting the general condition of its features. Inside, pick up any clutter and make sure we can access things like furnaces and water heaters. In the yard, trim any bushes so we can be free to get an accurate measurement of exterior walls.
To help expedite our work plus ensure a more accurate report, attempt if possible to have the following items:
How does an appraiser define "Market Value"?(See list of FAQ's) In real estate appraising, Market Value is commonly defined as:
Who actually owns the appraisal report?(See list of FAQ's) For mortgage transactions, the lender requests the appraisal, either directly or through a third party. Even though it's the buyer that eventually pays for the report, the lender is the intended user. The buyer is entitled to a copy of the appraisal - it's usually included with all the other closing documents - but is not entitled to use the report for any other purpose without permission from the lender.
This rule doesn't apply when a home owner hires an appraiser directly. In these scenarios, the appraiser may stipulate the purpose of the appraisal; for PMI removal, or estate planning or tax challenges, for example. If not stipulated otherwise, the home owner can use the appraisal for any purpose.
Are some home improvements more worthwhile than others?(See list of FAQ's) Like all things real estate, this is dependent on a home's location. For example, if you're in a neigborhood of small to medium priced homes, a media room may not be something people in that price range want
As a rule, the best ROI from renovating a home comes in the kitchen. One recent study revealed that putting $20,000 into a kitchen remodel would add about $17,500 to the value of the home - or about an 88% return on investment. Bathrooms are right up there with kitchens, yielding 85%. Adding bedrooms and baths can also boost the value of your home as long as your home doesn't then become overbuilt for your neighborhood in terms of size.