What goes into an appraisal?Getting a home can be the most important financial decision many of us may ever consider. It doesn't matter if it's a main residence, an additional vacation home or one of many rentals, the purchase of real property is an involved financial transaction that requires multiple people working in concert to pull it all off.
Practically all the participants are quite familiar. The real estate agent is the most recognizable person in the exchange. Then, the lender provides the money needed to finance the transaction. The title company sees to it that all details of the transaction are completed and that the title is clear to pass from the seller to the buyer.
So who makes sure the value of the real estate is in line with 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 parcel of real estate, where both buyer and seller are informed parties. A professional North Carolina licensed appraiser from Atlantic Coast Appraisers & Associates, Inc. will ensure you as an interested party are informed.
The inspection is where an appraisal startsTo determine the true status of the property, it's our responsibility to first complete a thorough inspection. We must see features hands on, such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the location, amenities, etc., to ensure they really exist and are in the condition a reasonable person would expect them to be. The inspection often includes a sketch of the house, ensuring the square footage is accurate and conveying the layout of the property. Most importantly, we identify any obvious amenities - or defects - that would affect the value of the house.
Back at the office, we use two or three approaches when determining the value of real property: paired sales analysis and, in the case of a rental property, an income approach.
Cost ApproachThis is where we gather information on local building costs, the cost of labor and other factors to determine how much it would cost to build a property similar to the one being appraised. This figure often sets the upper limit on what a property would sell for. It's also the least used predictor of value.
Paired Sales AnalysisAppraisers get to know the neighborhoods in which they appraise. We thoroughly understand the value of certain features to the people of that area. Then, the appraiser looks up recent sales in the neighborhood and finds properties which are 'comparable' to the subject at hand. Using knowledge of the value of certain items such as square footage, additional 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 are more accurately in line with the features of subject property.
Valuation Using the Income ApproachA third method of valuing real estate is sometimes applied when a neighborhood has a reasonable number of rental properties. In this scenario, the amount of revenue the real estate produces is taken into consideration along with income produced by similar properties to give an indicator of 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. 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 probably will not be the price at which the property closes. Depending on the specific situations of the buyer or seller, their level of urgency or a buyer's desire for that exact property, the closing price of a home can always be driven up or down. But the appraised value is typically used as a guideline for lenders who don't want to loan a buyer more money than the property would likely sell for in an open marketplace. The bottom line is: An appraiser from Atlantic Coast Appraisers & Associates, Inc. will help you attain the most fair and balanced property value, so you can make profitable real estate decisions.