What are the parts of an appraisal?Purchasing a house is the most important financial decision most people could ever make. Whether it's where you raise your family, a seasonal vacation home or an investment, the purchase of real property is an involved transaction that requires multiple parties to see it through.
The majority of the participants are very familiar. The most recognizable face in the exchange is the real estate agent. Then, the bank provides the financial capital required to finance the deal. Ensuring all details of the exchange are completed and that the title is clear to transfer to the buyer from the seller is the title company.
So who's responsible for making sure the value of the real estate is consistent with the purchase price? This is where you meet 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 professional Montana licensed appraiser from Mountain View Appraisal will ensure you as an interested party are informed.
Inspecting the subject propertyTo ascertain the true status of the property, it's our duty to first conduct a thorough inspection. We must physically see aspects of the property, such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the location, amenities, etc., to ensure they really are there and are in the shape a reasonable person would expect them to be. To make sure the stated size of the property is accurate and describe the layout of the property, the inspection often includes creating a sketch of the floor plan. Most importantly, the appraiser looks for any obvious amenities - or defects - that would have an impact on the value of the house.
Back at the office, an appraiser employs two or three approaches when determining the value of the property: a sales comparison, a replacement cost calculation, and an income approach when rental properties are prevalent.
Replacement CostThis is where we gather information on local construction costs, the cost of labor and other elements to figure out how much it would cost to replace the property being appraised. This estimate commonly sets the maximum on what a property would sell for. The cost approach is also the least used predictor of value.
Analyzing Comparable SalesAppraisers get to know the communities in which they work. We innately understand the value of certain features to the residents of that area. Then, the appraiser researches recent transactions in the vicinity and finds properties which are 'comparable' to the subject being appraised. 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 are more accurately in line with the features of subject.
Valuation Using the Income ApproachIn the case of income producing properties - rental houses for example - we may use a third method of valuing a house. In this scenario, the amount of revenue the real estate produces is taken into consideration along with other rents in the area for comparable properties to determine the current value.
Putting It All TogetherCombining information from all applicable approaches, the appraiser is then ready to put down an estimated market value for the property in question. Note: 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 price at which the property closes. 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 typically used as a guideline for lenders who don't want to loan a buyer more money than they could recover in case they had to put the property on the market again. At the end of the day: An appraiser from Mountain View Appraisal will guarantee you attain the most fair and balanced property value, so you can make the most informed real estate decisions.