REASONS TO GET AN APPRAISAL
Every year, countless people in the United States buy, sell or refinance their own slice of the American Dream.  Most, if not all, of these real estate transactions include a simple line item for a real estate appraisal.  It has become an understood and accepted part of a real estate transaction.  "Let's bring in the expert ( a Real Estate Appraiser) and make sure we're not spending too much on this property."

But is this the only reason to get an real estate appraisal? Are there other times when the services of a certified, licensed, independent real estate appraiser professional might come in handy?  You bet.

PURCHASE OF A RESIDENTIAL OR COMMERCIAL PROPERTY
One of the most important issues involved in purchasing a property is developing an opinion of what it's worth so that you can make an informed offer to purchase.  A professional real estate appraisal report performed by a qualified, state-licensed real estate appraiser can provide you with an objective, third party opinion of a property's current Market Value.  And for the small price of this service, you can give yourself "peace of mind" prior to making an offer to purchase that you're offering a fair price for the property. 

DIVORCE SETTLEMENT
Finalizing a divorce involves many decisions, including "Who gets the house"? There are generally two options regarding the house - it can be sold and the proceeds divided, or one party can "buy out" the other. In either case, one or both parties should order a real estate appraisal of the residence. Divorce appraisals require a well supported, professional real estate appraisal that is defensible in court. When you order an appraisal from us, you are assured that you will get the best in professional service, courtesy, and the highest quality appraisal. We also know how to handle the sensitive needs of a divorce situation.

Attorneys and Accountants rely on our values when calculating real property values for estates, divorces, bankruptcy or other disputes requiring a value being placed on real property. We understand their needs and are used to dealing with all parties involved. We provide appraisal reports that meet the requirements of the courts and various agencies.

As an attorney handling a divorce, your needs oftentimes include a real estate appraisal to establish fair market value for the residential real estate involved. Often the divorce date differs from the date you order the appraisal. Our real estate appraisers are familiar with the procedures and requirements necessary to perform a retroactive appraisal with an effective date and Fair Market Value estimate matching the date of divorce. The ethics provision within the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) binds us with confidentiality, ensuring the fullest degree of discretion.

Estate Appraisals

Settling an estate is an important and sometimes stressful job. As an executor you have been entrusted to carry out the wishes of the deceased as swiftly and exactly as possible. You can count on our real estate appraisers to act quickly and with sensitivity to the feelings of everyone involved.

Attorneys and Accountants rely on our values when calculating real property values for estates, divorces, or other disputes requiring a value being placed on real property. We understand their needs and are used to dealing with all parties involved. We provide real estate appraisal reports that meet the requirements of the courts and various agencies.

Settling an estate usually requires a real estate appraisal to establish Fair Market Value for the residential estate property involved. Often, the date of death differs from the date the appraisal is requested. Our real estate appraisers are familiar with the procedures and requirements necessary to perform a retroactive appraisal with an effective date and Fair Market Value estimate matching the date of death. The ethics provision within the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) binds us with confidentiality, ensuring the fullest degree of discretion.

All too often, people do not fully appreciate the need to have a detailed real estate appraisal prepared in support of the numbers being used in documents filed with revenue authorities.

Opinions of value used in documents filed with the revenue authorities should be supported by a detailed report as to how the real estate appraiser arrived at his conclusions. Such a report will certainly demonstrate to the authorities that the numbers used are well founded and substantiated.

Having a professional real estate appraisal gives the executor solid facts and figures to work with in meeting IRS and state agency requirements. It assures peace of mind to everyone concerned because we are there to stand behind the appraisal if it is challenged.

REFINANCE OR GET A HOME EQUITY LOAN
If you need to consolidate bills, have a college tuition to pay, or just want to tap into the equity of your home, you'll need a new loan, which oftentimes requires a new real estate appraisal of the property.
 
PMI REMOVAL
Private Mortgage Insurance or PMI is the supplemental insurance that many lenders ask home buyers to purchase when the amount being loaned is more than 80% of the value of the home. Very often, this additional payment is folded into the monthly mortgage payment and is quickly forgotten. This is unfortunate because PMI becomes unnecessary when the remaining balance of the loan - whether through market appreciation or principal paydown - dips below this 80% level. In fact, the United States Congress passed a law in 1998 (the Homeowners Protection Act of 1998) that requires lenders to remove the PMI payments when the loan-to-value ratio conditions have been met.

Many real estate appraisers offer a specific service for home owners that believe they have met the 80% loan-to-value metric. For a nominal fee, the real estate appraiser can provide you with a statement regarding the home value. Some will even take the next step and help you file a challenge with your mortgage company. The costs of these services are very often recovered in just a few months of not paying the PMI.

RELOCATION
We understand the stress involved with an employee relocation.  We take great care in establishing a convenient appointment time for the appraisal inspection. During our thorough inspection, we encourage relocating employees to provide input on the positive attributes of their property along with information about any recent sales or listings in their neighborhood that they want considered.

HOME IMPROVEMENTS TO ADD VALUE
Before you decide to sell your home, there are several decisions to be made. First and foremost: "How much should it sell for?"  But don't forget there may be other equally important questions to ask yourself such as "Would it be better to paint the entire house before we sell it?", "Should I put in that third bathroom?", "Should I complete my kitchen remodel?"  Many things which we do to our houses have an effect on their value.  Unfortunately, not all of them have an equal effect. While a kitchen remodel may improve the appeal of a home, it may not add nearly enough to the value to justify the expense.

SELLING OF YOUR REAL ESTATE (Pre-Listing)
Whether you choose to sell your home on your own or use the assistance of a real estate agent, a professional real estate appraisal can help you make a better educated decision when determining your selling price.

Unlike a real estate agent, a real estate appraiser has no vested interest in what amount the residential or commercial real estate sells for.  It's easy for them to step in and give you the information to help you make your decision.  Real estate appraiser fees are based on efforts to complete the report and not a percentage of the sales price. So seeking a professional real estate appraisal can often help owners make the best decisions on investing in their real estate and setting a fair sales price.