Understanding Appraisals

Buying real estate is the biggest investment most people may ever make. Whether it's a main residence, an additional vacation property or one of many rentals, purchasing real property is a complex financial transaction that requires multiple people working in concert to make it all happen.

The majority of the participants are very familiar. The most known entity in the exchange is the real estate agent. Then, the lender provides the financial capital necessary to fund the transaction. And the title company ensures that all details of the transaction 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 value of the property is consistent with the amount being paid? This is where the appraiser comes in. We provide an unbiased estimate of what a buyer could expect to pay — or a seller receive — for a property, where both buyer and seller are informed parties. A licensed, certified, professional appraiser from Appraisal Services of Brandon, Inc . will ensure, you as an interested party, are informed.

Appraisals begin with the property inspection

Our first duty at Appraisal Services of Brandon, Inc . 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 truly exist and are in the condition a reasonable buyer would expect them to be. The inspection often includes a sketch of the floorplan, ensuring the square footage is proper and conveying the layout of the property. Most importantly, the appraiser looks for any obvious amenities - or defects - that would affect the value of the property.

Once the site has been inspected, we use two or three approaches to determining the value of real property: sales comparison and, in the case of a rental property, an income approach.

Cost Approach

This is where the appraiser uses information on local construction costs, the cost of labor and other elements to calculate how much it would cost to build a property nearly identical to the one being appraised. This estimate commonly sets the maximum on what a property would sell for. It's also the least used predictor of value.

Paired Sales Analysis

Appraisers get to know the communities in which they work. They thoroughly understand the value of certain features to the homeowners of that area. Then, the appraiser researches recent transactions in the neighborhood and finds properties which are 'comparable' to the subject being appraised. By assigning a dollar value to certain items such as upgraded appliances, extra bathrooms, additional living area, quality of construction, lot size, we adjust the comparable properties so that they more accurately portray the features of subject.

  • If, for example, the comparable property has a storm shelter and the subject does not, the appraiser may deduct the value of a storm shelter from the sales price of the comparable.
  • However, 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.

An opinion of what the subject could sell for can only be determined once all differences between the comps and the subject have been evaluated. When it comes to associating a value with features of homes in Valrico and Hillsborough, Appraisal Services of Brandon, Inc . can't be beat. The sales comparison approach to value is most often given the most consideration when an appraisal is for a real estate sale.

Valuation Using the Income Approach

A third way of valuing a house is sometimes used when an area has a reasonable number of renter occupied properties. In this situation, the amount of revenue the property yields is factored in with other rents in the area for comparable properties to derive the current value.

Coming Up With The Final Value

Combining information from all approaches, the appraiser is then ready to document an estimated market value for the property in question. It is important to note that while this amount is probably the most reliable indication of what a property is worth, it probably will not be the final sales price. There are always mitigating factors such as seller motivation, 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 case they had to put the property on the market again. Here's what it all boils down to, an appraiser from Appraisal Services of Brandon, Inc . will help you discover the most accurate property value, so you can make profitable real estate decisions.