Common myths about appraising

By law, an appraiser must be state-licensed to offer appraisals for federally-related purchases. Also by law, you have the ability to demand a copy of the completed appraisal report from your lending agency. Contact us if you have any concerns about the appraisal process.

Myth: Assessed value should be equal to market value.

Fact: This is not often the case; most states do support the idea that the assessed value is the same as market value, but not always. At times when interior remodeling has been done and the assessor is unaware of the improvement or other houses in the Jamaica Estates have not been reassessed for quite some time, it may vary wildly.

Myth: The buyer or the seller can have impact in the value of the home depending upon for whom the appraiser is working.

Fact: The appraiser has no personal interest in the outcome of the report and should conduct services with independence, objectivity and impartiality - no matter for whom the appraisal is written.

Myth: Any time market value is found, it should be the same as the replacement cost of the home.

Fact: The way market value is found is based on what a home buyer would be willing to pay a willing seller for a home without being under pressure from any external party to purchase or sell. Replacement cost is the dollar amount needed to rebuild a house in-kind.

Myth: Appraisers use a formula, such as a specific price per square foot, to arrive at the worth of a property.

Fact: An appraisal is an assertion of information concluded from the home's size, location, proximity to specific facilities, the condition of the property and the value of recent comparable sales. You can count on Sirius Appraisal Services's appraisers to be honest in assessing this information.

Myth: In a robust economy - when the worth of houses in a given area are reported to be increasing by a particular percentage - the values of individual houses in the vicinity can be expected to appreciate by that same percentage.

Fact: Price appreciation of a certain home must be determined on an individualized basis, factoring in information on comparable homes and other relevant elements. This is true in good economic times as well as poor.

Have other questions about appraisers, appraising or real estate in Queens County or Jamaica Estates, NY?

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Myth: The house's outside is determinate of the actual worth of the home; there is no need to do an interior inspection.

Fact: Property worth is determined by a multitude of factors, including area, condition, improvements, amenities, and market trends. An exterior inspection certainly can't provide all of the data needed.

Myth: Since you're the one funding for the appraisal report when applying for the loan to buy or refinance your house, you own the ordered appraisal.

Fact: Unless a lender releases its interest in the report, it is legally owned by the lending agency that purchased the appraisal. Due the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, any home buyer asking for a copy of the appraisal report must be given one by their lender.

Myth: It doesn't matter to consumers what's in the report so long as it satisfies the needs of their lending company.

Fact: Only if consumers read a copy of their appraisal report can they verify its accuracy and possibly need to question the result. Remember, this is probably the most expensive and important investment a consumer will ever make. Also, the appraisal makes a valuable record for future reference, comprised of useful and often-revealing information - including the legal and physical description of the property, square footage measurements, list of comparable properties in the neighborhood, neighborhood description and a narrative of current real-estate activity and/or market trends in the vicinity.

Myth: Appraisers are hired only to estimate real estate property values in home sales involving mortgage-lending deals.

Fact: Appraisers can have many different qualifications and designations which allow them to perform a variety of different services including - but not limited to - advice on estate planning, tax assessment, zoning, dispute resolution in many different legal situations and cost analysis.

Myth: A house inspection serves the same purpose as an appraisal.

Fact: A home inspection report has a completely different purpose than an appraisal report. The job of the appraiser is to arrive at an opinion of value in the appraisal process and through producing the report. The point of a home inspector is to find the condition of the home and its major components, then create a report on these findings.