Getting real estate is the most important investment many people might ever encounter. It doesn't matter if where you raise your family, a second vacation property or one of many rentals, purchasing real property is a complex financial transaction that requires multiple people working in concert to make it all happen.
Practically all the participants are very familiar. The real estate agent is the most known entity in the transaction. Next, the lender provides the money needed to finance the exchange. And ensuring all aspects of the exchange are completed and that the title is clear to transfer from the seller to the purchaser is the title company.
So, what party is responsible for making sure the real estate is worth the amount being paid? This is where you meet the appraiser. We provide an unbiased estimate of what a buyer could expect to pay — or a seller receive — for a property, where both buyer and seller are informed parties. A licensed, certified, professional appraiser from Farrell Realty Advisors will ensure, you as an interested party, are informed.
The inspection is where an appraisal starts
To ascertain the true status of the property, it's our duty to first complete a thorough inspection. We must physically see features, such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the location, living areas, etc, to ensure they indeed exist and are in the condition a reasonable person would expect them to be. To make sure the stated size of the property has not been misrepresented and illustrate the layout of the home, the inspection often requires creating a sketch of the floorplan. Most importantly, the appraiser looks for any obvious amenities - or defects - that would affect the value of the house.
After the inspection, we use 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.
Here, we use information on local construction costs, the cost of labor and other factors to derive how much it would cost to build a property comparable to the one being appraised. This figure commonly sets the maximum on what a property would sell for. The cost approach is also the least used method.
Appraisers become very familiar with the subdivisions in which they appraise. They thoroughly understand the value of specific 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 real estate being appraised. By assigning a dollar value to certain items such as square footage, additional bathrooms, hardwood floors, fireplaces or view lots (just to name a few), we add or subtract from each comparable's sales price so that they are more accurately in line with the features of subject property.
An opinion of what the subject could sell for can only be determined once all differences between the comps and the subject have been evaluated. When it comes to putting a value on features of homes in Houston and Harris, Farrell Realty Advisors can't be beat. This approach to value is usually given the most importance 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 an additional approach to value. In this scenario, the amount of income the real estate generates is taken into consideration along with other rents in the area for comparable properties to determine the current value.
Combining information from all applicable approaches, the appraiser is then ready to put down an estimated market value for the property at hand. 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 what a property is worth. Depending on the individual situations of the buyer or seller, their level of urgency or a buyer's desire for that exact property, the closing price of a home can always be driven 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 the property is actually worth. The bottom line is, an appraiser from Farrell Realty Advisors will help you attain the most accurate property value, so you can make profitable real estate decisions.