Common myths about appraising

By law, an appraiser is enforced to be state-licensed to perform appraisals for federally-related sales. Also by law, you have the ability to demand a copy of the completed appraisal report from your lending agency. Contact our professional staff if you have any questions about the appraisal process.

Myth: Assessed value should be similar to to market value.

Fact: It could be that California, like most states, supports the suggestion that the assessed value is the same as the market value; however, this is sometimes the exception rather than the rule. Interior remodeling that the assessor has not investigated and a lack of reassessment on nearby houses are perfect examples of why the price can vary.

Myth: The buyer or the seller may have leverage in the value of the property depending upon for whom the appraiser is working.

Fact: The opinion of value of the house does not affect the payment of the appraiser; due to this, the appraiser has no pressured interest in the value of the property. Obviously, he will conduct services with impartiality and independence regardless for whom the appraisal is created.

Myth: Any time market value is established, it should be similar to the replacement cost of the property.

Fact: Without any influence from any outside parties to buy or sell, market value is what a willing buyer would pay a willing seller for a particular property. If the home were reconstructed, the dollar amount required to do so would set the replacement cost.

Myth: Appraisers use a calculation, like a certain price per square foot, to arrive at the cost of a home.

Fact: An appraisal is an assertion of information based on the home's size, location, proximity to certain facilities, the condition of the home and the price of recent comparable sales. You can count on Piscitelli Appraisal Service's appraisers to be honest in assessing this information.

Myth: As homes increase their worth by a certain percentage - in a strong economic state - the houses nearby are expected to increase by the same amount.

Fact: All appreciation of worth is on an individual basis, determined by information on relevant conditions and the data of comparable houses. It doesn't matter if the economy is doing well or declining.

Have other questions about appraisers, appraising or real estate in Ventura County or Oak Park, CA?

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Myth: The house's exterior is determinate of the actual worth of the house; there is no need to do an interior inspection.

Fact: There are a number of different factors that determine property value; these factors include location, condition, improvements, amenities, and market trends. An external inspection definitely can't provide all of the information necessary.

Myth: Because consumers fund appraisals when applying for loans to buy or refinance their house, they own their appraisal.

Fact: The appraisal is, in fact, legally owned by the lender - unless the lender "relinquishes its interest" in the document. However, home buyers must be given a copy of the document upon written request, due to the Equal Credit Opportunity Act.

Myth: Consumers need not care about what is in their appraisal document so long as it exceeds the necessities of their lending agency.

Fact: It is almost imperative for home buyers to peruse a copy of their appraisal so that they can double-check the accuracy of the report, in case they need to question its veracity. Remember, this is probably the most expensive and important investment a consumer will ever make. There is a wealth of information stored in an appraisal report that can be useful to the home buyer 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 region.

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

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

Myth: An appraisal report is the same as a home inspection.

Fact: A home inspection has a completely different purpose than an appraisal. The purpose of the appraiser is to arrive at an opinion of value in the appraisal process and through producing the report. House inspectors will write a report that will express the condition of the home and its major components and possible damage.