Frequently Asked Questions

Quick answers to questions you may have.

An appraisal is an unbiased professional opinion of a property’s value. It is used whenever a definitive value is needed for real estate transactions, property financing, taxation, or legal matters.

Market value is the estimated amount for which a property should be exchanged on the valuation date between a willing buyer and a willing seller in an arms-length transaction after proper marketing wherein the parties had each acted knowledgeably, prudently, and without compulsion.
A real estate appraisal must be conducted by a licensed or certified appraiser who has completed required education and training. Appraisers should also adhere to a strict code of ethics and professional standards.
The time it takes to complete a real estate appraisal can vary depending on the complexity of the property and the availability of data, but typically it ranges from a few days to a week.
The appraisal report is typically seen by the client who ordered it, which is often a lender or financial institution for a mortgage. The homeowner and any other entities specified by the client may also receive a copy.
Yes, for a complete appraisal, an appraiser will need to inspect the interior and exterior of your home to assess its condition and gather necessary information for an accurate valuation.
Yes, appraisers can estimate value for proposed improvements or new construction based on plans, specifications, and available market data.
Yes, not all improvements will increase a property’s value. Some may be over-capitalized for the area or not in line with buyer preferences, thus not resulting in a higher appraised value.
Yes, this is known as a retrospective appraisal. Appraisers can evaluate a property’s value as of a specific date in the past based on the data and market conditions at that time.
Typical users include lenders, investors, property owners, attorneys, accountants, government agencies, and other parties needing an accurate property valuation.
A real estate appraiser typically requires state certification or licensing, which involves completing education, passing an exam, and gaining experience under a qualified appraiser.
While appraisers follow standardized procedures and guidelines, there may be slight variations in value due to individual judgment or interpretation of market data.
No, property value is an estimate based on available market evidence and professional judgment. It is not an exact figure but rather a most likely price.
No, an appraisal is an estimate of value, while a home inspection is a detailed examination of the property’s condition and does not provide a property value.
Yes, an appraisal provides a value estimate, while a home inspection informs you of the property’s condition, both critical in home-buying.
It’s often wise to get an appraisal for your knowledge, even if your lender doesn’t require one, to ensure you’re making a well-informed purchase decision.
If you believe the appraiser made an error, you can request a review or obtain a second appraisal for comparison.
Yes, an appraisal can provide a realistic estimate of your property’s value, which can help set a competitive listing price and negotiate offers.
While an appraiser can provide a value estimate, you and your real estate agent should determine the final list price, considering market conditions and your selling goals.
The appraisal report is typically confidential between the appraiser and the client. However, the client can share the report with others if they choose.
The lender typically owns the appraisal since they ordered it, but as the borrower, you have the right to receive a copy of the appraisal report.
Appraisers use flood maps and other resources to determine flood zones. If you believe this information needs to be corrected, consult FEMA maps or a surveyor for verification.