What Are the Parts of an Appraisal?

Buying a house is the largest transaction many of us could ever consider. It doesn't matter if a main residence, an additional vacation property or a rental fixer upper, purchasing real property is a complex financial transaction that requires multiple parties to pull it all off.

Practically all the people involved are very familiar. The real estate agent is the most known face in the transaction. Then, the mortgage company provides the financial capital necessary to fund the transaction. And the title company sees to it that all requirements of the transaction are completed and that the title is clear to pass from the seller to the buyer.

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So, who makes sure the value of the property is consistent with the purchase price? This is where you meet the appraiser. We provide an unbiased opinion of what a buyer might expect to pay — or a seller receive — for a property, where both buyer and seller are informed parties. A licensed, certified, professional appraiser from Regan Leddy Appraisal, LLC. will ensure, you as an interested party, are informed.

Appraisals begin with the home inspection

Our first task at Regan Leddy Appraisal, LLC. is to inspect the property to determine its true status. We must actually see features, such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the location, amenities, etc., to ensure they really are present and are in the condition a typical person would expect them to be. To ensure the stated square footage is accurate and convey the layout of the property, the inspection often includes creating a sketch of the floorplan. Most importantly, the appraiser identifies any obvious amenities - or defects - that would affect the value of the property.

Next, after the inspection, we use 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.

Replacement Cost

This is where the appraiser analyzes information on local construction costs, the cost of labor and other factors to figure out how much it would cost to replace the property being appraised. This estimate often sets the upper limit on what a property would sell for. The cost approach is also the least used method.

Analyzing Comparable Sales

Appraisers can tell you a lot about the communities in which they work. They innately understand the value of certain features to the homeowners of that area. Then, the appraiser researches recent transactions in the vicinity and finds properties which are 'comparable' to the property 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 are more accurately in line with the features of subject property.

  • If, for example, the comparable property has an extra half bath that the subject doesn't, the appraiser may subtract the value of that half bath from the sales price of the comparable.
  • However, if the subject has an extra half-bathroom and the comparable does not, the appraiser might add a certain 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 Regan Leddy Appraisal, LLC., we are experts when it comes to knowing the value of real estate features in Canton and Cherokee County neighborhoods. This approach to value is usually given the most weight when an appraisal is for a real estate sale.

Valuation Using the Income Approach

A third way of valuing a house is sometimes employed when a neighborhood has a reasonable number of renter occupied properties. In this case, the amount of income the property generates is taken into consideration along with other rents in the area for comparable properties to derive the current value.

Coming Up With The Final Value

Examining the data from all applicable approaches, the appraiser is then ready to stipulate an estimated market value for the property in question. The estimate of value on the appraisal report is not necessarily the final sales price even though it is likely the best indication of what a property is worth. 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. But 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. Here's what it all boils down to, an appraiser from Regan Leddy Appraisal, LLC. will help you attain the most accurate property value, so you can make wise real estate decisions.