An appraisal is a professional appraiser’s opinion of value. The preparation of an appraisal involves research into appropriate market areas; the assembly and analysis of information
pertinent to a property; and the knowledge, experience and professional judgment of the
appraiser. The role of the appraiser is to provide objective, impartial and unbiased opinions
about the value of real property – providing assistance to those who own, manage, sell, invest
in and/or lend money on the security of real estate.
At minimum, all states require appraisers to be state licensed or certified in order to provide appraisals to federally regulated lenders. Appraisers have fulfilled rigorous educational and
experience requirements and must adhere to strict standards and a code of professional ethics. Qualified State Certified appraisers bring knowledge, experience, impartiality and trust to the transaction. In so doing, they help their clients make sound decisions with regard to real property.
Most appraisals are reported in writing, although in certain circumstances, an appraiser may provide an oral appraisal. A written appraisal report generally consists of: a description of the property and its locale; an analysis of the “highest and best use” of the property; an analysis
of sales of comparable properties “as near the subject property as possible”; and information
regarding current real estate activity and/or market area trends. The value indicated by recent
sales of comparable properties, the current cost of reproducing or replacing a building, and the
value that the property’s net earning power will support are the most important considerations
in the valuation of real property.
In addition to residential or commercial appraisal – and depending upon an appraiser’s designation and qualifications – he or she may be able to assist with the following:
The following questions would be appropriate to ask when selecting an appraiser: