Common myths about appraising

By law, an appraiser needs to be state-licensed to perform appraisals for federally-related sales. Also by law, you are entitled to demand a copy of the completed appraisal report from your lender. Contact our professional staff if you have any concerns about the appraisal procedure.

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

Fact: It is possible that Florida, like most states, supports the suggestion that the assessed value is no different from the market value; however, this is not always true. Examples include when interior remodeling has occurred and the assessor has not seen the improvements, or when homes in the area have not been reassessed for an prolonged period.

Myth: The opinion of value of a property will vary depending upon if the appraisal is provided for the buyer or the seller.

Fact: The appraiser has no vested interest in the result of the appraisal report and should render his task with independence, objectivity and impartiality - no matter for whom the appraisal is written.

Myth: The replacement value of the property is always is on par with the market value.

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 particular property. If the house were reconstructed, the dollar amount necessary to do so would make up the replacement cost.

Myth: Certain methods, such as the price per square foot, are the ways appraisers use to come to the cost of a house.

Fact: There are many differing formulae that an appraiser will use to make a comprehensive analysis of every factor pertaining to the home, such as the size, location, condition, how close it is to certain facilities and the opinion of value of recently sold comparable homes.

Myth: When the economy is strong and the sales prices of homes are found to be rising by a certain percentage, the other homes in the proximity can be expected to increase based on that same percentage.

Fact: Any cost at which an appraiser arrives in regards to a particular home is always individualized, based on certain factors pulled from the information of comparable properties and other considerations within the house itself. This is true in fair economic times as well as bad.

Have other questions about appraisers, appraising or real estate in Hillsborough County or Valrico, FL?

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

Fact: Property worth is concluded by a multitude of factors, including area, condition, improvements, amenities, and market trends. There's no possible way to get all of this information from simply viewing the house from the exterior.

Myth: Considering that the consumer is the one who puts up the funding to pay for the appraisal when applying for a loan for any real estate transaction, by law the appraisal belongs to them.

Fact: Legally, the document is owned by the lending agency unless the lender releases their interest in the document. Consumers must be provided with a version of the report through request as per the Equal Credit Opportunity Act.

Myth: Consumers need not worry about what is in their report so long as it satisfies the requirements of their lending agency.

Fact: It is very important for home buyers to look at a copy of their report so that they can double-check the accuracy of the document, in case they need to question its accuracy. Remember, this is probably the most expensive and important investment a consumer will ever make. An report can serve as a record for the future, containing a great deal of data - including, but certainly 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 proximity.

Myth: The only reason someone would order an appraisal is if a property needs its value estimated in a lender-based sales transaction.

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

Myth: You shouldn't need to get an appraisal if you order a home inspection.

Fact: Appraisal reports are nothing like a home inspection. The appraiser concludes on an opinion of value in the appraisal process and resulting appraisal report. The point of a home inspector is to approximate the condition of the home and its main components, then compose a report on these conclusions.