Appraisal myths debunked

It is enforced by legal agencies that a real estate appraiser needs to be state-licensed to create appraisals for federally-supported real estate purchases in Louisiana. Also by law, you are allowed to request a copy of the finished appraisal from your lending agency. Contact us if you have any questions about the appraisal procedure.

Myth: Assessed value will always be the same as to market value.

Fact: It might be that Louisiana, like most states, validates the common myth that the assessed value is no different from the market value; however, this certainly varies based on state-to-state. Interior reconstruction that the assessor is not aware of and a lack of reassessment on nearby properties are perfect examples of why the price can vary.

Myth: The buyer or the seller can have impact in the value of the home depending upon for whom the appraiser is working.

Fact: There is no personal interest on the part of the appraiser in the outcome 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 should be is on par with the market value.

Fact: The way market value is arrived at is based on what a buyer would likely pay a willing seller for a property without being under pressure from any outside party to buy or sell. If the home were rebuilt, the dollar amount necessary to do so would make up the replacement cost.

Myth: Appraisers use a calculation, like a specific price per square foot, to arrive at the cost of a home.

Fact: An appraisal report is an assertion of information concluded from the home's size, location, proximity to some facilities, the condition of the home and the value of recent comparable sales. You can rely on Crescent Appraisal Group, Inc.'s appraisers to be honest in assessing this data.

Myth: In a strong economy - when the worth of homes in a given area are reported to be rising by a certain percentage - the costs of individual houses in the vicinity can be expected to increase by that same percentage.

Fact: Cost appreciation of a certain house must be concluded on a case-by-case basis, factoring in information on comparable homes and other relevant considerations. It doesn't matter if the economy is on the rise or declining.

Have other questions about appraisers, appraising or real estate in Jefferson County or Metairie, LA?

Contact Crescent Appraisal Group, Inc.

Myth: You can usually see what a property is worth simply by looking at the outside.

Fact: Home value is concluded by a multitude of variables, including - but not limited to - area, condition, improvements, amenities, and market trends. An outside-only inspection obviously can't provide all of the data required.

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

Fact: Legally, the appraisal report is owned by the lender unless the lender relinquishes their interest in the report. By the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, any home buyer demanding a copy of the document must be given it by their lending agency.

Myth: There's no point for home buyers to even concern themselves with what the appraisal report contains so long as their lender is fine with the contents therein.

Fact: Only if consumers look at a copy of their report can they double-check its accuracy and possibly need to question the result. Remember, this is probably the most expensive and important investment a consumer will ever make. Also, the appraisal report makes an excellent record for future reference, filled with useful and often-revealing data - including 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 vicinity.

Myth: Appraisals are ordered only to assess house values in home sales involving mortgage-lending transactions.

Fact: Depending upon their qualifications and designations, appraisers can and do provide a lot of services, including advice for estate planning, dispute resolution, zoning and tax assessment review and cost/benefit analysis.

Myth: There's no need to get an appraisal if you order a home inspection.

Fact: A home inspection serves a completely different purpose than an appraisal report. The appraiser concludes on an opinion of value in the appraisal process and resulting appraisal report. A home inspector determines the condition of the house and its main components and reports their findings.