Common myths about appraising

It is required by law that a real estate appraiser must be state-licensed to offer appraisals for federally-related property purchases in Alaska. The law gives you the right to acquire a copy of your finished appraisal report from your lender after it has been provided. Contact us if you have any concerns about the appraisal process.

Myth: Market value has to be equivocal to the assessed value of the property.

Fact: It could be that Alaska, like most states, validates the idea that the assessed value equates to the market value; however, this is not often the case. At times when interior remodeling has occurred and the assessor is has not investigated the improvement or other homes in the Wasilla have not been reassessed for quite a while, it may vary wildly.

Myth: Depending on whether the appraisal is written for the buyer or the seller, the value of the house will vary.

Fact: There is no real interest on the part of the appraiser in the result of the appraisal, therefore he will complete his work with impartiality and independence, despite for whom the appraisal is conducted.

Myth: The replacement cost of the home will be is on par with the market value.

Fact: Market value is arrived at through what a willing buyer would likely pay a willing seller for a specific property, with neither being under undue influence to buy or sell. If the home were reconstructed, the dollar amount needed to do so would set the replacement cost.

Myth: There are specific methods that appraisers use to find the value of a home, such as the price per square foot.

Fact: An appraisal report is a collection of information based on the property's size, location, proximity to some facilities, the condition of the home and the cost of recent comparable sales. You can rely on Alaska Real Estate Appraisal's appraisers to be professional in assessing this information.

Myth: As homes increase their worth by a certain percentage - in a robust economy - the houses in proximity are expected to appreciate by the same amount.

Fact: All increase of value is on a case-by-case basis, found by information on relevant conditions and the data of comparable houses. It doesn't matter if the economy is doing well or declining.

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Myth: Just examining what the property looks like on its exterior gives a good idea of its cost.

Fact: To conclude an accurate worth beyond all doubt, an appraiser must examine the property on a variety of factors based on location, condition, improvements, amenities, and market trends. An exterior inspection definitely can't provide all of the data necessary.

Myth: Because consumers pay for the appraisal when applying for loans to buy or refinance real estate, they own their appraisal.

Fact: Legally, the appraisal is owned by the lender unless the lender relinquishes their interest in the report. Home buyers have to be supplied with a copy of the report through request as per the Equal Credit Opportunity Act.

Myth: It doesn't concern consumers what's in the appraisal report so long as it meets the requirements of their lender.

Fact: Only if consumers check out a copy of their report can they verify its accuracy and possibly need to question the result. Remember, this is probably the most expensive and important investment a consumer will ever make. An report can double as a record for the future, containing a great deal of information - including, but 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: Appraisers are hired only to estimate home values in property sales involving mortgage-lending deals.

Fact: Appraisers can have many varied qualifications and designations which allow them to perform a series of different services including - but definitely not limited to - advice on estate planning, tax assessment, zoning, dispute resolution in many different legal situations and cost analysis.

Myth: A home inspection serves the same purpose as an appraisal.

Fact: Appraisal reports have almost nothing in common with a home inspection. The purpose of the appraiser is to come to an opinion of value in the appraisal process and through creating the report. A home inspector analyzes the condition of the house and its major components and reports their findings.