Understanding Appraisals

Getting a home is the most important transaction many may ever consider. It doesn't matter if where you raise your family, a seasonal vacation property or an investment, the purchase of real property is an involved financial transaction that requires multiple people working in concert to see it through.

It's likely you are familiar with the parties taking part in the transaction. The real estate agent is the most known face in the transaction. Next, the mortgage company provides the money needed to finance the deal. And ensuring all areas of the sale are completed and that a clear title transfers from the seller to the purchaser 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 is responsible for making sure the value of the property is consistent with the purchase price? This is where the appraiser comes in. We provide an unbiased estimate of what a buyer might expect to pay — or a seller receive — for a parcel of real estate, where both buyer and seller are informed parties. A licensed, certified, professional appraiser from Ferrari Appraisals LLC will ensure, you as an interested party, are informed.

The inspection is where an appraisal begins

Our first duty at Ferrari Appraisals LLC is to inspect the property to ascertain its true status. We must see aspects of the property first hand, such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the location, amenities, etc., to ensure they indeed exist and are in the condition a typical buyer would expect them to be. The inspection often includes a sketch of the house, ensuring the square footage is proper and conveying the layout of the property. Most importantly, the appraiser looks for any obvious features - or defects - that would have an impact on the value of the house.

Back at the office, we use two or three approaches to determining the value of real property: sales comparison and, in the case of a rental property, an income approach.

Replacement Cost

Here, the appraiser pulls information on local building costs, the cost of labor and other factors to determine 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.

Paired Sales Analysis

Appraisers can tell you a lot about the subdivisions in which they appraise. They innately understand the value of particular features to the homeowners of that area. Then, the appraiser researches recent transactions in close proximity to the subject and finds properties which are 'comparable' to the home being appraised. By assigning a dollar value to certain items such as fireplaces, room layout, appliance upgrades, additional bathrooms or bedrooms, or quality of construction, we add or subtract from each comparable's sales price so that they are more accurately in line with the features of subject.

  • For example, if the comparable has a storm shelter and the subject doesn't, the appraiser may deduct the value of a storm shelter from the sales price of the comparable home.
  • However, if the subject has an extra half-bathroom and the comparable does not, the appraiser might add an amount to the comparable property.

After all differences have been accounted for, the appraiser reconciles the adjusted sales prices of all the comps and then derives an opinion of what the subject could sell for. At Ferrari Appraisals LLC, we are experts when it comes to knowing the value of real estate features in Marlborough and Hartford County neighborhoods. This approach to value is most often awarded the most consideration when an appraisal is for a home exchange.

Valuation Using the Income Approach

In the case of income producing properties - rental houses for example - the appraiser may use an additional way of valuing a house. In this situation, the amount of income the property produces is taken into consideration along with income produced by nearby properties to derive 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 property in question. The estimate of value at the bottom of the appraisal report is not always the final sales price even though it is likely the best indication of a property's valueIt's not uncommon for prices to be driven up or down by extenuating circumstances like the motivation or urgency of a seller or 'bidding wars'. Regardless, the appraised value is often employed as a guideline for lenders who don't want to loan a buyer more money than they could recover in case they had to put the property on the market again. At the end of the day, an appraiser from Ferrari Appraisals LLC will help you attain the most accurate property value, so you can make profitable real estate decisions.