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Real Property Appraisals: A Primer

Getting a house is the most serious investment some will ever encounter. Whether it's a primary residence, a second vacation property or a rental fixer upper, purchasing real property is an involved 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 familiar face in the exchange is the real estate agent. Next, the mortgage company provides the money necessary to bankroll the deal. And ensuring all areas of the sale are completed and that the title is clear to pass from the seller to the purchaser is the title company.

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 is responsible for making sure the value of the property is in line with the purchase price? In comes 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 licensed, certified, professional appraiser from DANIEL I KANDEL will ensure, you as an interested party, are informed.

Appraisals begin with the property inspection

To determine the true status of the property, it's our responsibility to first perform a thorough inspection. We must see features hands on, such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the location, and so on, to ensure they really exist and are in the shape a reasonable person would expect them to be. The inspection often includes a sketch of the floorplan, ensuring the square footage is correct and illustrating the layout of the property. Most importantly, the appraiser looks for any obvious features - 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: a paired sales analysis, a replacement cost calculation, and an income approach when rental properties are prevalent.

Cost Approach

Here, the appraiser pulls information on local building costs, labor rates and other elements to determine how much it would cost to replace the property being appraised. This figure usually sets the upper limit on what a property would sell for. It's also the least used predictor of value.

Paired Sales Analysis

Appraisers are intimately familiar with the communities in which they work. They innately understand the value of certain features to the people of that area. Then, the appraiser looks up 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 square footage, additional bathrooms, hardwood floors, fireplaces or view lots (just to name a few), we add or subtract from each comparable's sales price so that they are more accurately in line with the features of subject property.

  • For example, if the comparable has an extra half bath that the subject does not, the appraiser may deduct the value of that half bath from the sales price of the comparable home.
  • 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.

A true estimate 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 Weston/Ft. Lauderdale and Broward, DANIEL I KANDEL is second to none. This approach to value is commonly given the most weight when an appraisal is for a home sale.

Valuation Using the Income Approach

A third method of valuing a property is sometimes used when a neighborhood has a measurable number of renter occupied properties. In this case, the amount of revenue the property generates is factored in with income produced by similar properties to derive the current value.

Coming Up With The Final Value

Analyzing the data from all approaches, the appraiser is then ready to stipulate an estimated market value for the property at hand. It is important to note that while this amount is probably the most accurate indication of what a property is worth, it may not be the price at which the property closes. Prices can always be driven up or down by extenuating circumstances like the motivation or urgency of a seller or 'bidding wars'. Regardless, the appraised value is often employed as a guideline for lenders who don't want to loan a buyer more money than the property is actually worth. At the end of the day, an appraiser from DANIEL I KANDEL will help you attain the most accurate property value, so you can make wise real estate decisions.