Common myths about appraising

By law, an appraiser must be state-licensed to offer appraisals for federally-supported sales. You also have the right to receive a copy of the finished report from your lender. Contact us if you have any concerns about the appraisal procedure.

Myth: The value that is assessed by the appraiser will be exactly the same as the market value.

Fact: It might be that Louisiana, like most states, validates the idea that the assessed value is the same as the market value; however, this certainly varies based on state-to-state. Examples include when interior reconstruction has occurred and the assessor is unaware of the improvements, or when homes in the vicinity have not been reassessed for an prolonged period.

Myth: The appraised value of a house will change depending upon if the appraisal is ordered for the buyer or the seller.

Fact: The appraiser has no vested interest in the result of the report and should complete services with independence, objectivity and impartiality - no matter for whom the appraisal is written.

Myth: Any time market value is established, it should be similar to the replacement cost of the home.

Fact: Without any influence from any different parties to purchase or sell, market value is what a willing buyer would pay a willing seller for a particular home. The dollar amount needed to rebuild a property is what constitutes the replacement cost.

Myth: There are certain ways that appraisers use to show the value of a house, such as the price per square foot.

Fact: An appraisal is a collection of information concluded from the home's size, location, proximity to specific facilities, the condition of the property and the cost of recent comparable sales. You can depend on Crescent Appraisal Group, Inc.'s appraisers to be honest in assessing this data.

Myth: When the economy is on the rise and the worth of houses are found to be rising by a certain percentage, the other homes in the proximity can be expected to appreciate based on that same percentage.

Fact: Any cost at which an appraiser concludes in regards to a specific property is always individualized, based on certain factors pulled from the information of comparable homes and other specifications within the property itself. This is true in strong economic times as well as bad.

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Myth: Just examining what the home looks like on its exterior gives an excellent idea of its worth.

Fact: There are a number of different factors that determine property value; these factors include area, condition, improvements, amenities, and market trends. There's no possible way to get all of this information from simply looking at the property from the exterior.

Myth: Because consumers pay for appraisal reports when applying for loans to buy or refinance their home, they own their appraisal.

Fact: The appraisal is, in fact, legally owned by the lender - unless the lender "releases its interest" in the report. However, consumers have to be supplied with a copy of the appraisal upon written request, through the Equal Credit Opportunity Act.

Myth: There's no need for home buyers to even worry about what the report contains so long as their lending institution is satisfied.

Fact: A home buyer should definitely read through their report; there may be some questions or some concerns about the accuracy of the appraisal that must be addressed. Remember, this is probably the most expensive and important investment a consumer will ever make. An report can serve as a record for the future, as it contains a great deal of data - including, but certainly not limited to the legal and physical description of the property, square footage measurements, list of comparable properties in the neighborhood, neighborhood description and a narrative of current real-estate activity and/or market trends in the proximity.

Myth: Appraisals are ordered only to estimate building values in property sales involving mortgage-lending deals.

Fact: Ordering an appraisal can fulfill a variety of needs depending on the designations and certifications of the appraiser involved; appraisers can provide a multitude of different services, including benefit/cost analysis, tax assessment, legal dispute resolution, and even estate planning.

Myth: You don't have to get an appraisal if you order a home inspection.

Fact: Appraisal reports are nothing like a home inspection. The purpose of an appraisal report is to find an opinion of fair market value during the appraisal process and the production of the appraisal report. A home inspector analyzes the condition of the house and its main components and reports these findings.