The Appraisal ProcessPurchasing a home is the biggest financial decision many of us ever consider. It doesn't matter if it's a primary residence, an additional vacation home or a rental fixer upper, the purchase of real property is an involved financial transaction that requires multiple people working in concert to pull it all off.
It's likely you are familiar with the parties taking part in the transaction. The most recognizable entity in the exchange is the real estate agent. Next, the bank provides the financial capital necessary to finance the deal. The title company makes sure that all details of the exchange are completed and that the title is clear to transfer to the buyer from the seller.
So who makes sure the value of the property is consistent with the amount being paid? This is where you meet the appraiser. We provide an unbiased estimate of what a buyer might expect to pay - or a seller receive - for a parcel of real estate, where both buyer and seller are informed parties. A professional Minnesota/Wisconsin Certified Residential appraiser from BM Appraisals will ensure you as an interested party are informed.
The inspection is where an appraisal startsOur first responsibility at BM Appraisals is to inspect the property to determine its true status. We must see aspects of the property first hand, such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the location, amenities, etc., to ensure they truly are there and are in the shape a typical person would expect them to be. The inspection often includes a sketch of the floor plan, ensuring the square footage is correct and conveying the layout of the property. Most importantly, we look for any obvious amenities - or defects - that would have an impact on the value of the property.
Next, after the inspection, we use two or three approaches to determining the value of real property: paired sales analysis and, in the case of a rental property, an income approach.
Cost ApproachHere, the appraiser gathers information on local building costs, the cost of labor and other elements to calculate how much it would cost to replace the property being appraised. This value often sets the maximum on what a property would sell for. It's also the least used predictor of value.
Analyzing Comparable SalesAppraisers can tell you a lot about the communities in which they work. They innately understand the value of specific features to the residents of that area. Then, the appraiser researches recent transactions in the neighborhood and finds properties which are 'comparable' to the subject in question. Using knowledge of the value of certain items such as fireplaces, room layout, appliance upgrades, additional bathrooms or bedrooms, or quality of construction, we adjust the comparable properties so that they more accurately portray the features of subject 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 the Twin Cities metro area, BM Appraisals can't be beat. The sales comparison approach to value is typically awarded the most weight when an appraisal is for a home sale.
Valuation Using the Income ApproachA third method of valuing a house is sometimes employed when an area has a reasonable number of renter occupied properties. In this case, the amount of income the property generates is factored in with income produced by nearby properties to determine the current value.
The Bottom LineCombining information from all applicable approaches, the appraiser is then ready to put down an estimated market value for the property at hand. Note: While this amount is probably the strongest indication of what a house is worth, it probably will not be the price at which the property closes. There are always mitigating factors such as seller motivation, urgency or 'bidding wars' that may adjust the final 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 get back in case they had to put the property on the market again. The bottom line is: An appraiser from BM Appraisals will guarantee you discover the most fair and balanced property value, so you can make profitable real estate decisions.