Understanding the Appraisal ProcessPurchasing real estate is the most important transaction some people might ever make. It doesn't matter if it's where you raise your family, a second vacation property or an investment, purchasing real property is a complex financial transaction that requires multiple people working in concert to make it all happen.
It's likely you are familiar with the parties taking part in the transaction. The most known face in the transaction is the real estate agent. Next, the lender provides the money necessary to fund the deal. Ensuring all areas of the exchange are completed and that the title is clear to transfer to the buyer from the seller is the title company.
So what party is responsible for making sure the value of the real estate is consistent with the purchase price? In comes the appraiser. We provide an unbiased opinion of what a buyer could expect to pay - or a seller receive - for a parcel of real estate, where both buyer and seller are informed parties. A professional Florida licensed appraiser from Saunders Appraisals will ensure you as an interested party are informed.
Appraisals begin with the inspectionTo ascertain the true status of the property, it's our duty to first complete a thorough inspection. We must see features first hand, such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the location, amenities, etc., to ensure they really are present and are in the shape a typical buyer would expect them to be. To ensure the stated square footage is accurate and illustrate the layout of the house, the inspection often requires creating a sketch of the floor plan. Most importantly, we look for any obvious features - or defects - that would have an impact on the value of the house.
Once the site has been inspected, we use two or three approaches when determining the value of the property: paired sales analysis and, in the case of a rental property, an income approach.
Cost ApproachThis is where the appraiser pulls information on local building costs, the cost of labor and other elements to calculate how much it would cost to build a property nearly identical to the one being appraised. This estimate often sets the maximum on what a property would sell for. It's also the least used predictor of value.
Analyzing Comparable SalesAppraisers become very familiar with the subdivisions in which they work. We innately understand the value of specific features to the people of that area. Then, the appraiser looks up recent transactions in the area and finds properties which are 'comparable' to the property at hand. Using knowledge of the value of certain items such as square footage, extra bathrooms, hardwood floors, fireplaces or view lots (just to name a few), we add or subtract from each comparable's sales price so that they more accurately match the features of subject.
Valuation Using the Income ApproachA third way of valuing approach to value is sometimes employed when an area has a reasonable number of renter occupied properties. In this case, the amount of income the real estate yields is factored in with income produced by similar properties to give an indicator of the current value.
The Bottom LineAnalyzing the data from all applicable approaches, the appraiser is then ready to put down an estimated market value for the subject property. It is important to note that while the appraised value is probably the best indication of what a house would sell for in an open market, it may not be the final sales price. There are always mitigating factors such as the seller's desire to get out of the property, urgency or 'bidding wars' that may adjust an offer or listing price up or down. Regardless, the appraised value is typically employed as a guideline for lenders who don't want to loan a buyer more money than they could get back in case they had to put the property on the market again. Here's what it all boils down to: An appraiser from Saunders Appraisals will help you attain the most fair and balanced property value, so you can make wise real estate decisions.