What Are the Components of an Appraisal?

Buying a home is the most significant investment some could ever consider. It doesn't matter if where you raise your family, a seasonal vacation home or an investment, purchasing real property is a detailed financial transaction that requires multiple parties to pull it all off.

The majority of the participants are very familiar. The most recognizable entity in the transaction is the real estate agent. Next, the lender provides the money required to bankroll the transaction. The title company ensures that all aspects of the sale are completed and that a clear title passes 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 makes sure the real estate is worth the purchase price? In comes the appraiser. We provide an unbiased opinion 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 licensed, certified, professional appraiser from Perpetual Valuations Group will ensure, you as an interested party, are informed.

Appraisals begin with the property inspection

To ascertain the true status of the property, it's our responsibility to first complete a thorough inspection. 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 are there and are in the shape a typical person would expect them to be. To make sure the stated size of the property 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 features - or defects - that would have an impact on the value of the property.

Once the site has been inspected, we use two or three approaches to determining the value of real property: a sales comparison, a replacement cost calculation, and an income approach when rental properties are prevalent.

Replacement Cost

Here, we analyze information on local building costs, labor rates and other factors to determine how much it would cost to replace the property being appraised. This figure usually sets the upper limit on what a property would sell for. The cost approach is also the least used predictor of value.

Analyzing Comparable Sales

Appraisers get to know the subdivisions in which they work. They thoroughly 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 subject being appraised. By assigning a dollar value to certain items such as remodeled rooms, types of flooring, energy efficient items, patios and porches, or extra storage space, we add or subtract from each comparable's sales price so that they more accurately match the features of subject property.

  • Say, for example, the comparable has an extra half bath that the subject does not, the appraiser may subtract the value of that half bath 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.

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 Perpetual Valuations Group, we are experts when it comes to knowing the value of particular items in Snellville and Gwinnett County neighborhoods. The sales comparison approach to value is typically given the most importance when an appraisal is for a real estate purchase.

Valuation Using the Income Approach

In the case of income producing properties - rental houses for example - the appraiser may use an additional way of valuing real estate. In this situation, the amount of revenue the property generates is taken into consideration along with income produced by nearby properties to derive the current value.

Reconciliation

Combining information from all approaches, the appraiser is then ready to put down an estimated market value for the subject property. Note: While the appraised value is probably the most accurate indication of what a house is worth, it may not be the final sales price. Prices can always be driven up or down by extenuating circumstances like the motivation or urgency of a seller or 'bidding wars'. Regardless, the appraised value is typically employed 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 Perpetual Valuations Group will help you attain the most fair and balanced property value, so you can make profitable real estate decisions.