Adamson Appraisals has answers to "Frequently Asked Questions"
What is an appraisal?
What is an appraisal?(List of questions) The procedure of performing an appraisal consists of an investigation which leads to an opinion of value. The real estate appraiser will use a few "approaches," typically three, to conclude the estimation of market value. One of the three is the Cost Approach - which is what it would cost to replace the improvements, minus physical deterioration and other factors, plus the land value. The Sales Comparison Approach deals with finding similar houses nearby and finding value based on comparing those prior sales to the home being investigated. The Sales Comparison Approach is normally the most definitive and best indicator of value for a residential property. The third approach is the Income Approach, which is the best method in appraising income producing properties - it deals with estimating what an investor would pay based on the capital generated by the property.
Describe what an appraiser does(List of questions) An appraiser generates an unbiased and well supported determination of market value, in the support of real estate transactions. Appraisers exhibit their expert conclusions in appraisal reports.
What are the reasons someone would need a real estate appraisal?(List of questions) There are a lot of reasons to obtain an appraisal from Adamson Appraisals with the usual reason being real estate and mortgage transactions. Other reasons for purchasing an report include:
Is an appraisal the same as a home inspection? (List of questions)Home inspectors do not produce an opinion of value and are not appraisers. An inspection is a third-party investigation of the livable structure and mechanical systems of a property, from the roof to the bottom. The stereotypical house inspector's report will contain an evaluation of the integrity of the home's heating systems, central air conditioning system (temperature permitting), interior plumbing and electrical systems, the roof, attic, and visible insulation, walls, ceilings, floors, windows and doors, the foundation, basement, and visible structure.
Is an appraisal the same as a comparative market analysis(CMA)?(List of questions) To be honest, they have nothing in common. The CMA depends on indefinite local market trends. Appraisals use comparable sales which are verifiable resources. Area and construction values are also a priority in an appraisal. A CMA delivers a "ball park figure." Delivering a defensible and careful analysis, an appraisal will give a clear opinion of value.
But the biggest difference is who's creating the report. Real estate agents write CMA's, and they don't always know the whole market or bear specific competence when it comes to home valuation. A certified, state licensed professional who has formed their livelihood on valuing properties in and around Snohomish County creates the appraisal. Further, the appraiser is an independent party, with no conditional interest in the property's value, unlike the real estate agent, whose income is tied to the price of the home.
What can I expect to see in my appraisal report? (List of questions)Every appraisal should reflect a supported value opinion and should identify the following:
After completing the report, how can I have certainty that the value indicated is veritable?(List of questions) In the documentation of an appraisal, each appraiser must make sure of the following:
Who do appraisers work for?(List of questions) Mortgage lenders are an appraiser's typical customer, requesting their services to ensure real estate involved in a mortgage transaction is adequate collateral for a loan. Attorneys and CPAs also hire appraisers for asset division and estate settlements.
Where does Adamson Appraisals get the data used to estimate values in Snohomish County or other areas?(List of questions) Collecting information is one of the main things an appraiser performs. Data can be described as either Specific or General. Specific data is collected from the home itself; Location, condition, amenities, size and other specific data are noted by the appraiser while on site.
General data is collected from a number of sources. Local Multiple Listing Services (MLS) have data on recently sold homes that might be used as comparables. Tax records and other courthouse documents verify actual sales prices in a market. Flood zone data is gathered from FEMA data outlets, such as a la mode's InterFlood system.
And most importantly, the appraiser assembles general data from his or her past experience in creating appraisals for other properties in the same market.
What can a full appraisal do for me?(List of questions) An appraisal is a valuable tool anytime the value of your home is relevant to a financial decision. If you're selling your house, an appraisal helps you set the most appropriate price. If you're buying, it makes sure you don't overpay. For those settling an estate or divorce, an appraisal from Adamson Appraisals is the best documentation to ensure assets are divided properly. A home is often the single, largest financial asset anybody owns. Without knowing its real value, wise financial decisions are impossible.
My mortgage statement has an item on it for PMI? Can I get rid of that?(List of questions) PMI is an acronym for Private Mortgage Insurance. This added plan protects the lender in case a borrower is unable to pay on the loan and the market price of the home is lower than what the borrower still owes on the loan. You can have your PMI dropped once you've achieved 20% equity in your home through appreciation and principal payments.
Should I do anything in advance of the appraisal appointment(List of questions) We start with an inspection of the property. What this entails is the appraiser, after setting up an appointment, personally going through the home - recording the layout of the rooms, taking photos and documenting the general condition of its amenities. Is there anything you can do to help? Yes there is! First, be sure the appraiser has easy access to the exterior of the house . Trim any bushes and move any items that would get in our way while we measure the structure. Indoors, make sure we can easily access appliances like furnaces and water heaters.
You can make the inspection go faster and improve the quality of the appraisal report by having the following things on hand:
What does "Market Value" mean?(List of questions) In real estate appraising, Market Value (as opposed to Fair Market Value) is commonly defined as:
Does the appraisal belong to the bank or the consumer?(List of questions) For mortgage transactions, the lender orders the appraisal, either directly or through a third party. Even though it's the buyer that eventually pays for the report, the lender is the intended user. The buyer is entitled to a copy of the appraisal - it's usually bundled with all the other closing documents - but is not entitled to use the report for any other purpose without permission from the lender.
It's different when it's the homeowner engaging the appraiser for things outside securing a mortgage. In these scenarios, the appraiser may state how the appraisal can be used; for PMI removal, or estate planning or tax challenges, for example. If not stipulated otherwise, the home owner can use the appraisal for any purpose.
How can I get the most ROI out of home improvements?(List of questions) The answer to this is different depending upon the location of the home. For example, adding a central air conditioner in to a home in the South may add significant value, while putting one in a home near the Pacific Northwest might not have much impact.
As a rule, the most value returned from renovating a home comes in the kitchen. According to one national survey, kitchen remodels returned an average of 88% of the investment. In other words, a $10,000 kitchen remodeling project would add approximately $8,800 to the value of the home. Bathrooms were second, yielding 85%. Adding bedrooms and baths can also increase the value of your home as long as your home doesn't then become an oddball for your neighborhood in terms of size.