What Are the Components of an Appraisal?

Their home's purchase can be the most serious investment most of us might ever make. It doesn't matter if where you raise your family, an additional vacation property or one of many rentals, purchasing real property is an involved transaction that requires multiple people working in concert to pull it all off.

You're likely to be familiar with the parties taking part in the transaction. The real estate agent is the most familiar entity in the exchange. Then, the lender provides the money required to fund the transaction. And ensuring all details of the sale are completed and that the title is clear to pass to the buyer from the seller is the title company.

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So, who's responsible for making sure the value of the real estate is in line with the amount being paid? This is where you meet the appraiser. We provide an unbiased estimate 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 Pulse Appraisal will ensure, you as an interested party, are informed.

Inspecting the subject property

To ascertain an accurate status of the property, it's our duty to first complete a thorough inspection. We must see aspects of the property first hand, such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the location, living areas, etc, to ensure they really exist and are in the condition a typical person would expect them to be. The inspection often includes a sketch of the property, ensuring the square footage is proper and illustrating the layout of the property. Most importantly, the appraiser looks for any obvious amenities - or defects - that would have an impact on the value of the house.

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

Replacement Cost

Here, we pull information on local building costs, labor rates and other factors to calculate how much it would cost to build a property similar to the one being appraised. This value usually sets the maximum on what a property would sell for. It's also the least used predictor of value.

Paired Sales Analysis

Appraisers can tell you a lot about the communities in which they work. They innately understand the value of particular features to the people of that area. Then, the appraiser looks up recent sales in the area and finds properties which are 'comparable' to the property at hand. By assigning a dollar value to certain items such as square footage, additional bathrooms, hardwood floors, fireplaces or view lots (just to name a few), we adjust the comparable properties so that they more accurately match the features of subject property.

  • If, for example, the comparable property has an irrigation system and the subject doesn't, the appraiser may deduct the value of an irrigation system 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.

In the end, the appraiser reconciles the adjusted sales prices of all the comps and then derives an opinion of what the subject could sell for. At Pulse Appraisal , we are an authority when it comes to knowing the worth of particular items in White Salmon and Klickitat County neighborhoods. The sales comparison approach to value is commonly awarded the most weight 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 - we may use an additional way of valuing real estate. In this case, the amount of revenue the property generates is factored in with other rents in the area for comparable properties to give an indicator of the current value.

Coming Up With The Final Value

Examining the data from all applicable approaches, the appraiser is then ready to state an estimated market value for the subject property. The estimate of value on the appraisal report is not necessarily what's being paid for the property 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. Regardless, the appraised value is often 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 sell the property again. The bottom line is, an appraiser from Pulse Appraisal will guarantee you discover the most accurate property value, so you can make profitable real estate decisions.