An Overview of AppraisalsAcquiring a home can be the most significant investment some of us will ever make. It doesn't matter if it's where you raise your family, a second vacation home or an investment, purchasing real property is a detailed financial transaction that requires multiple people working in concert to see it through.
Most of the participants are quite familiar. The real estate agent is the most known person in the exchange. Then, the bank provides the financial capital needed to bankroll the transaction. Ensuring all requirements of the sale are completed and that the title is clear to pass to the buyer from the seller is the title company.
So who's responsible for making sure the value of the real estate is in line with the purchase price? In comes the appraiser. We provide an unbiased opinion of what a buyer might expect to pay - or a seller receive - for a parcel of real estate, where both buyer and seller are informed parties. A professional California licensed appraiser from BFReal Estate will ensure you as an interested party are informed.
The inspection is where an appraisal startsOur first task at BFReal Estate is to inspect the property to ascertain its true status. We must see aspects of the property hands on, such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the location, living areas, etc., to ensure they indeed are there and are in the shape a typical buyer would expect them to be. To make sure the stated size of the property is accurate and convey the layout of the house, the inspection often includes creating a sketch of the floor plan. Most importantly, we look for any obvious features - or defects - that would affect the value of the property.
Next, after the inspection, we use two or three approaches when determining the value of the property: a paired sales analysis, a replacement cost calculation, and an income approach when rental properties are prevalent.
Replacement CostThis is where the appraiser analyzes information on local building costs, the cost of labor and other elements to determine how much it would cost to construct a property similar to the one being appraised. This value commonly sets the maximum on what a property would sell for. It's also the least used method.
Analyzing Comparable SalesAppraisers can tell you a lot about the communities in which they appraise. We innately understand the value of specific features to the people of that area. Then, the appraiser looks up recent transactions in close proximity to the subject and finds properties which are 'comparable' to the property in question. Using knowledge of the value of certain items such as upgraded appliances, extra bathrooms, an additional living area, quality of construction, lot size, we adjust the comparable properties so that they are more accurately in line with the features of subject property.
Valuation Using the Income ApproachIn the case of income producing properties - rental houses for example - the appraiser may use a third way of valuing a property. In this case, the amount of income the property yields is factored in with income produced by comparable properties to give an indicator of the current value.
ReconciliationCombining information from all approaches, the appraiser is then ready to put down an estimated market value for the property in question. The estimate of value at the bottom of the appraisal report is not always what's being paid for the property even though it is likely the best indication of what a property could sell for in an open market. It's not uncommon for prices to be driven up or down by extenuating circumstances like the motivation or urgency of a seller or 'bidding wars'. Regardless, the appraised value is often used as a guideline for lenders who don't want to loan a buyer more money than the property would likely sell for in an open marketplace. The bottom line is: An appraiser from BFReal Estate will help you get the most accurate property value, so you can make wise real estate decisions.