Common myths about appraising

By law, an appraiser needs to be state-licensed to produce appraisals for federally-backed transactions. The law allows you to get a copy of your finished report from your lender after it has been provided. Contact our professional staff if you have any questions about the appraisal procedure.

Myth: The value that is ascertained by the appraiser will be the same as the market value.

Fact: It is probable that California, like most states, supports the common myth that the assessed value equals the market value; however, this certainly varies based on state-to-state. Often when interior remodeling has occurred and the assessor is not aware of the improvement or other houses in the Oak Park have not been reassessed for years or more, it may vary wildly.

Myth: The buyer or the seller often will have some pull in the cost of the house depending upon for whom the appraiser is working.

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

Myth: Market value should equal replacement cost.

Fact: Market value is based on what a willing buyer would be interested in paying a willing seller for a specific home, with neither being under undue influence to buy or sell. The replacement cost is the dollar amount needed to rebuild a house in-kind.

Myth: Certain formulae, such as the price per square foot, are the methods appraisers use to arrive at the value of a house.

Fact: Appraisers make an exhaustive analysis of all factors in consideration to the cost of a home, including its location, condition, size, proximity to facilities and recent worth of comparable properties.

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

Fact: All increase of worth is on an individual basis, determined by data on relevant considerations and the data of comparable properties. It makes no difference if the economy is excellent or on the decline.

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

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

Fact: There are a multitude of different variables that conclude property value; these factors include area, condition, improvements, amenities, and market trends. An exterior inspection certainly can't provide all of the data needed.

Myth: Considering that the consumer is the one who puts up the money to pay for the appraisal when applying for a loan for any real estate transaction, legally the appraisal report is theirs.

Fact: Legally, the appraisal is owned by the lending company unless the lender relinquishes their interest in the report. However, consumers must be supplied with a copy of the appraisal report upon written request, because of the Equal Credit Opportunity Act.

Myth: It doesn't mean anything to consumers what's in the report so long as it satisfies the needs of their lender.

Fact: It is almost imperative for consumers to go through a copy of their appraisal so that they can double-check the accuracy of the document, in case it's required to question its accuracy. Remember, this is probably the most expensive and important investment a consumer will ever make. Also, the appraisal report makes a valuable record for future reference, filled with useful and often-revealing information - 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 area.

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

Fact: Based upon their qualifications and designations, appraisers can and often do provide a lot 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: An appraisal does not fulfill the same purpose as an inspection. The appraiser concludes on an opinion of value in the appraisal process and resulting document. The purpose of a home inspector is to find the condition of the property and its major components, then create a report on these findings.