Common myths about appraising

Legally, an appraiser must be state certified to perform legitimate appraisal reports for federally-related purchase. You have the ability to acquire a copy of the finished report from your lending agency. Contact our professional staff if you have any concerns about the appraisal procedure.

Myth: Assessed value should always equate to market value.

Fact: This usually isn't true; most states do support the suggestion that the assessed value is the same as market value, but not always. Interior reconstruction that the assessor is unaware of and a dearth of reassessment on nearby houses are perfect examples of why there might be a differential in price.

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

Fact: There is no personal interest on the part of the appraiser in the result of the report, therefore he will complete his work with impartiality and independence, no matter for whom the appraisal is conducted.

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

Fact: The way market value is derived is based on what a home buyer would likely pay a willing seller for a property without being under duress from any external party to buy or sell. If the home were rebuilt, the dollar amount needed to do so would form the replacement cost.

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

Fact: Appraisers make a comprehensive analysis of all factors in consideration to the value of a home, including its location, condition, size, proximity to facilities and recent values of comparable homes.

Myth: When the economy is robust and the worth of properties are found to be appreciating by a certain percentage, the other properties in the area can be expected to increase based on that same percentage.

Fact: Any price at which an appraiser arrives in regards to a certain home is always individualized, based on certain factors pulled from the information of comparable houses and other considerations within the house itself. It doesn't matter if the economy is doing well or declining.

Have other questions about appraisers, appraising or real estate in Bucks County or Langhorne, PA?

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

Fact: There are a multitude of different factors that conclude the value of a home; these factors include location, condition, improvements, amenities, and market trends. An external inspection definitely can't provide all of the data required.

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

Fact: Unless a lender releases its vestment in the document, it is legally owned by the lending company that ordered the appraisal. However, home buyers must be given a copy of the appraisal report upon written request, due to the Equal Credit Opportunity Act.

Myth: Consumers need not be concerned with what is in their report so long as it meets the necessities of their lending agency.

Fact: Only if home buyers read a copy of their appraisal can they double-check its accuracy and possibly need to question the result. Remember, this is probably the most expensive and important investment a consumer will ever make. Also, the appraisal makes an excellent record for future reference, comprised of helpful 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: Appraisers are hired only to assess building values in house sales involving mortgage-lending transactions.

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

Myth: An appraisal is no different than a home inspection.

Fact: An appraisal does not fulfill the same purpose as an inspection report. The job of the appraiser is to arrive at an opinion of value in the appraisal process and through creating the report. House inspectors will write a report that will determine the condition of the house and its major components and possible damage.