Real Property Appraisals

Bring in an expert and make sure you're not spending too much!

 A home purchase is the largest, single investment most people will ever make. The purchase of real property is a complex financial transaction that involves multiple parties beyond buyer and seller. The Realtor aids in the sales process, the mortgage company provides the financing, the title company ensures clear title and a safe transaction. But who makes sure the value of the property is in line with the amount being paid? A real estate transaction is too valuable for all the parties to not bring in an unbiased expert to ascertain a fair market value.  This is where an appraisal comes in. An appraisal is an unbiased estimate of the value for a parcel of real estate.

Most people turn to a licensed, professional appraiser like Austin Dodson to provide them with the most accurate estimate of the true value of their property. But of course this is not the only reason to have an appraisal, there are other times when the services of a licensed, independent real estate professional come in handy.

  • PURCHASE OF A HOME : 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 appraisal report performed by a qualified, state-licensed 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. 

  •  SELLING A HOME: Whether you choose to sell your home on your own or use the assistance of a real estate agent, a professional appraisal can help you make a better educated decision when determining your selling price. An appraiser has no vested interest in what amount the house sells for.  It’s easy for us to step in and give you the information to help you make your decision.  Appraiser fees are based on efforts to complete the report and not a percentage of the sales price. So seeking a professional appraisal can often help homeowners make the best decisions on investing in their homes and setting a fair sales price.

  • 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. The costs of these services are very often recovered in just a few months of not paying the PMI. 

  • 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 appraisal of the property. 

  • ESTATE LIQUIDATION: The loss of a loved one is a difficult time in life and settling an estate from a death, or probate, often requires an appraisal to establish Fair Market Value for the residential property involved.  The ethics provision within the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) binds us with confidentiality, ensuring the fullest degree of discretion. Unlike many wealthy individuals, the majority of Americans do not have dedicated estate planners or executors to handle these issues.  Also, in most cases, a home or other real property makes up a disproportionate share of the total estate value. Here too, an appraiser can help.  Often the first step in fairly disposing of an estate is to understand its true value.  Where property is involved, the appraiser can help determine the true value.  At this point, equitable arrangements can more easily be arrived at among disputing parties. Everyone walks away knowing they’ve received a fair deal.

  • DIVORCE SETTLEMENT: A divorce can be a particularly traumatic experience for both parties and is often further complicated by the difficult decision of “Who gets the house?”.  In most divorce cases, the Court won’t usually force the parties involved to “buyout” the other party’s interest but it may however order the sale of the home so each party gets an equal share of the equity.  Regardless of the situation, it’s a good idea to order an appraisal so both parties are fully aware of what the true market value is. If the parties want to sell the home, they’ll have a better idea of what price to set.  And on the flipside, if a “buyout” is the chosen option, both parties will feel like they’ve gotten a fair assessment.

  • 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. 

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Phoenix Real Estate Solutions, LLC

All of Alameda, Contra Costa & Solano Counties

(925) 690-7579

Phoenix Real Estate Solutions