What Are the Parts of an Appraisal?

Their home's purchase can be the most important transaction many people may ever encounter. Whether it's where you raise your family, an additional vacation home or a rental fixer upper, purchasing real property is a detailed transaction that requires multiple parties to pull it all off.

Most people are familiar with the parties taking part in the transaction. The most known face in the exchange is the real estate agent. Then, the bank provides the money needed to bankroll the deal. And ensuring all details of the sale are completed and that a clear title passes to the buyer from the seller is the title company.

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So, what party is responsible for making sure the real estate is worth the amount being paid? In comes the appraiser. We provide an unbiased estimate of what a buyer could expect to pay — or a seller receive — for a property, where both buyer and seller are informed parties. A licensed, certified, professional appraiser from Casa Grande Appraisal Service will ensure, you as an interested party, are informed.

The inspection is where an appraisal starts

To determine the true status of the property, it's our responsibility to first conduct a thorough inspection. We must see aspects of the property first hand, such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the location, living areas, etc, to ensure they truly are present and are in the shape a typical buyer would expect them to be. To make sure the stated square footage has not been misrepresented and convey the layout of the home, the inspection often entails creating a sketch of the floorplan. Most importantly, we identify any obvious amenities - or defects - that would affect the value of the house.

Next, after the inspection, an appraiser uses two or three approaches to determining the value of real property: a paired sales analysis, a replacement cost calculation, and an income approach when rental properties are prevalent.

Cost Approach

This is where we pull information on local building costs, the cost of labor and other elements to figure out how much it would cost to construct a property nearly identical to the one being appraised. This estimate often sets the upper limit on what a property would sell for. The cost approach is also the least used predictor of value.

Analyzing Comparable Sales

Appraisers get to know the communities in which they work. They innately understand the value of certain 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 home in question. Using knowledge of the value of certain items such as fireplaces, room layout, appliance upgrades, additional bathrooms or bedrooms, or quality of construction, we adjust the comparable properties so that they more accurately portray the features of subject.

  • For example, if the comparable has a fireplace and the subject doesn't, the appraiser may deduct the value of a fireplace from the sales price of the comparable.
  • However, if the subject property has an extra half-bathroom and the comparable does not, the appraiser might add an amount to the comparable property.

Once all necessary adjustments have been made, the appraiser reconciles the adjusted sales prices of all the comps and then derives an opinion of what the subject could sell for. At Casa Grande Appraisal Service, we are an authority in knowing the worth of particular items in Casa Grande and Maricopa County neighborhoods. The sales comparison approach to value is most often awarded the most importance when an appraisal is for a home exchange.

Valuation Using the Income Approach

In the case of income producing properties - rental houses for example - the appraiser may use an additional approach to value. In this case, the amount of revenue the real estate generates is taken into consideration along with other rents in the area for comparable properties to derive the current value.

Putting It All Together

Examining the data from all approaches, the appraiser is then ready to stipulate an estimated market value for the property in question. Note: While this amount is probably the best indication of what a house is worth, it may not be the final sales price. Prices can always be driven up or down by extenuating circumstances like the motivation or urgency of a seller or 'bidding wars'. But the appraised value is often used as a guideline for lenders who don't want to loan a buyer more money than the property is actually worth. The bottom line is, an appraiser from Casa Grande Appraisal Service will guarantee you discover the most fair and balanced property value, so you can make wise real estate decisions.