Comprehending Appraisals

Getting a house is the most important investment many people might ever make. Whether it's where you raise your family, a second vacation property or an investment, purchasing real property is a complex financial transaction that requires multiple people working in concert to see it through.

Practically all the parties involved are very familiar. The most familiar person in the exchange is the real estate agent. Next, the mortgage company provides the money necessary to fund the deal. And ensuring all aspects of the transaction 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 makes sure the property is worth the purchase price? In comes the appraiser. We provide an unbiased opinion 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 MGK Properties will ensure, you as an interested party, are informed.

Inspecting the subject property

Our first task at MGK Properties is to inspect the property to ascertain its true status. We must physically see features, such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the location, and so on, to ensure they really are present and are in the condition a reasonable buyer would expect them to be. The inspection often includes a sketch of the floorplan, ensuring the square footage is proper and conveying the layout of the property. Most importantly, the appraiser identifies any obvious amenities - or defects - that would affect the value of the house.

Following the inspection, an appraiser uses two or three approaches to determining the value of real property: a sales comparison, a replacement cost calculation, and an income approach when rental properties are prevalent.

Cost Approach

This is where we pull information on local building costs, the cost of labor and other factors to derive how much it would cost to construct a property nearly identical to the one being appraised. This figure usually sets the upper limit on what a property would sell for. It's also the least used method.

Analyzing Comparable Sales

Appraisers become very familiar with the neighborhoods in which they work. They innately understand the value of particular features to the homeowners of that area. Then, the appraiser researches recent sales in close proximity to the subject and finds properties which are 'comparable' to the home at hand. By assigning a dollar value to certain items such as upgraded appliances, additional bathrooms, additional living area, quality of construction, lot size, we add or subtract from each comparable's sales price so that they more accurately portray the features of subject property.

  • For example, if the comparable has a storm shelter and the subject does not, the appraiser may subtract the value of a storm shelter 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.

In the end, 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 valuing features of homes in Hemet and Riverside, MGK Properties can't be beat. The sales comparison approach to value is most often awarded the most importance when an appraisal is for a real estate purchase.

Valuation Using the Income Approach

In the case of income producing properties - rental houses for example - the appraiser may use a third way of valuing a house. In this case, the amount of income the property yields is taken into consideration along with income produced by nearby properties to determine the current value.

Arriving at a Value Conclusion

Combining information from all applicable approaches, the appraiser is then ready to put down an estimated market value for the subject property. The estimate of value at the bottom of the appraisal report is not necessarily the final sales price even though it is likely the best indication of a property's valueThere are always mitigating factors such as seller motivation, urgency or 'bidding wars' that may adjust the final price up or down. Regardless, the appraised value is typically used 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 MGK Properties will guarantee you get the most fair and balanced property value, so you can make profitable real estate decisions.