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What Are the Parts of an Appraisal?

Acquiring a home is the most serious transaction some may ever make. Whether it's a primary residence, a second vacation property or an investment, the purchase of real property is an involved transaction that requires multiple parties to make it all happen.

Practically all the participants are very familiar. The most familiar person in the transaction is the real estate agent. Then, the lender provides the financial capital required to bankroll the deal. And ensuring all details of the exchange are completed and that a clear title passes to the buyer from the seller 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 consistent with the amount being paid? This is where the appraiser comes in. We provide an unbiased estimate of what a buyer might expect to pay — or a seller receive — for a property, where both buyer and seller are informed parties. A licensed, certified, professional appraiser from Appraisal Express HI, LLC will ensure, you as an interested party, are informed.

The inspection is where an appraisal starts

To determine an accurate status of the property, it's our responsibility to first perform a thorough inspection. We must actually view aspects of the property, such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the location, amenities, etc., to ensure they really exist and are in the shape a typical buyer would expect them to be. The inspection often includes a sketch of the floorplan, ensuring the square footage is correct and conveying the layout of the property. Most importantly, we identify any obvious amenities - or defects - that would have an impact on the value of the property.

Back at the office, an appraiser uses 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.

Replacement Cost

Here, we analyze information on local construction costs, the cost of labor and other elements to determine how much it would cost to replace the property being appraised. This estimate usually sets the maximum 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 neighborhoods in which they appraise. They innately understand the value of particular features to the people of that area. Then, the appraiser looks up recent sales in close proximity to the subject and finds properties which are 'comparable' to the home at hand. Using knowledge of the value of certain items such as remodeled rooms, types of flooring, energy efficient items, patios and porches, or additional storage space, we adjust the comparable properties so that they more accurately match the features of subject.

  • Say, for example, the comparable has a fireplace and the subject doesn't, the appraiser may subtract the value of a fireplace from the sales price of the comparable.
  • But, 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.

Once all necessary adjustments have been made, the appraiser reconciles the adjusted sales prices of all the comps and then derives an opinion of what the subject could sell for. When it comes to associating a value with features of homes in Kihei and Maui, Appraisal Express HI, LLC is second to none. This approach to value is most often awarded the most weight when an appraisal is for a real estate exchange.

Valuation Using the Income Approach

In the case of income producing properties - rental houses for example - we may use a third way of valuing a house. In this case, the amount of income the real estate yields is factored in with income produced by neighboring properties to derive the current value.

Putting It All Together

Combining information from all applicable approaches, the appraiser is then ready to state an estimated market value for the subject property. Note: While the appraised value is probably the best 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 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 put the property on the market again. Here's what it all boils down to, an appraiser from Appraisal Express HI, LLC will guarantee you get the most accurate property value, so you can make the most informed real estate decisions.