What Are the Parts of an Appraisal?

A home purchase can be the most serious transaction most will ever encounter. It doesn't matter if where you raise your family, a seasonal vacation property or an investment, the purchase of real property is a complex financial transaction that requires multiple parties to pull it all off.

You're probably familiar with the parties having a role in the transaction. The real estate agent is the most known person in the exchange. Then, the bank provides the financial capital needed to bankroll the transaction. The title company ensures that all requirements of the transaction are completed and that the title is clear to pass to the buyer from the seller.

To learn more about appraising, click here to see a short video or call us today to talk about your specific property.

So, what party is responsible for making sure the value of the property is in line with the amount being paid? This is where the appraiser comes in. We provide an unbiased estimate 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 licensed, certified, professional appraiser from Charles Keim''s Appraisal Services will ensure, you as an interested party, are informed.

Appraisals begin with the home inspection

Our first responsibility at Charles Keim''s Appraisal Services 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 really exist and are in the condition a typical person would expect them to be. The inspection often includes a sketch of the floorplan, ensuring the square footage is accurate and illustrating the layout of the property. Most importantly, we look for any obvious features - or defects - that would affect the value of the property.

Back at the office, an appraiser uses two or three approaches to determining the value of the property: paired sales analysis and, in the case of a rental property, an income approach.

Cost Approach

This is where we analyze information on local construction costs, the cost of labor and other factors to derive how much it would cost to replace the property being appraised. This figure often sets the maximum on what a property would sell for. It's also the least used predictor of value.

Analyzing Comparable Sales

Appraisers can tell you a lot about the neighborhoods in which they appraise. They innately understand the value of certain features to the people of that area. Then, the appraiser looks up recent sales in close proximity to the subject and finds properties which are 'comparable' to the real estate at hand. Using knowledge of the value of certain items such as fireplaces, room layout, appliance upgrades, additional bathrooms or bedrooms, or quality of construction, we add or subtract from each comparable's sales price so that they are more accurately in line with the features of subject.

  • Say, for example, the comparable property has a fireplace and the subject does not, the appraiser may subtract the value of a fireplace from the sales price of the comparable home.
  • In the case where the subject has something such as an extra half bath that a comparable doesn't have, the appraiser might add the value of that bath to the comparable property.

A true estimate of what the subject could sell for can only be determined once all differences between the comps and the subject have been evaluated. When it comes to associating a value with features of homes in Menifee and Riverside, Charles Keim''s Appraisal Services is second to none. The sales comparison approach to value is usually awarded the most weight when an appraisal is for a home purchase.

Valuation Using the Income Approach

A third way of valuing approach to value is sometimes employed when an area has a measurable number of rental properties. In this scenario, the amount of revenue the real estate produces is factored in with other rents in the area for comparable properties to derive the current value.

Reconciliation

Examining the data from all approaches, the appraiser is then ready to state an estimated market value for the property in question. Note: While this amount is probably the most accurate indication of what a house is worth, 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 the final price up or down. Regardless, the appraised value is often used as a guideline for lenders who don't want to loan a buyer more money than they could recover in the event they had to put the property on the market again. The bottom line is, an appraiser from Charles Keim''s Appraisal Services will help you discover the most fair and balanced property value, so you can make wise real estate decisions.