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From The Outside, What Do Interior Field Appraisers Look For In A House?

Apr 22

Appraisers, according to Paul Fonseca, a top-selling real estate agent in Fort Myers, Florida, have a tough job. In today's ever-changing property market, they're in responsible of assessing a home's value.

According to the Appraisal Institute, residential house appraisers employ a systematic evaluation approach to arrive at an opinion of a home's market worth. Most appraisers describe their findings using the Uniform Residential Appraisal Describe, which was designed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (URAR).

We'll explain what house appraisers look for when evaluating your property with the aid of six industry pros. Here's a preview of what's to come:

  • Your home's structural soundness is examined by appraisers
  • The location of your house has a significant impact on its value
  • When establishing the value of a property, appraisers consider both on-site and nearby property attributes
  • These are the things FHA appraisers look for
  • Appraisals for refinances function in the same manner as appraisals for house sales do
  • Appraisers do not evaluate movable elements or décor
  • Although you may challenge a low appraisal, the value of your house is unlikely to change

Your home's structural soundness is examined by appraisers

The typical assessment report evaluates the general property attributes, such as building materials and structural elements. The sales comparison technique is used by appraisers to compare the home's features to those of previously sold similar properties.

An appraiser may give a house with a two-car garage higher value than a home with a one-car garage when comparing two identical properties.

Appraisers seek for the following features during Allenwood interior field appraisals:

The property's characteristics

  • Information about the dimensions: The number of rooms, bedrooms, and baths in the structure's living space above grade, measured in square feet
  • Garage and driveway The amount of cars a garage can accommodate, as well as the kind of driveway surface, depends on whether it's detached or built-in
  • As an add-on, there is a dwelling unit called: Whether the ADU is zoning-permitted, and how it impacts the property's marketability and value
  • Overall score: The property's general condition, as well as if it fulfills neighborhood criteria

Featured on the interior

  • Types of heating and cooling systems, as well as their current status
  • Floor materials and condition
  • The kind of materials used and the status of the walls
  • Trim material and condition
  • Appliances: Appliances include things like a refrigerator, stove, oven, and dishwasher
  • Energy-saving features include: Just a few examples are energy efficiency certification, tankless water heaters, and insulated ducting

Surface characteristics

  • External wall material and condition
  • Roof: Roof material, condition, and type
  • Windows: The kind of window, whether it has screens, and the quantity of insulation are all things to think about
  • There is a pool, an outdoor fireplace, and other outdoor attractions

The foundations and the attic

  • The foundation's kind and quality are critical
  • Basement: The basement is the most significant component of the home, whether it's completed or unfinished
  • Attic, completed or unfinished

Home appraisers also take into consideration improvements, renovations, and expansions

"It makes obvious that a newer or more updated house would sell more than a comparable but more antiquated home," says Mason Spurgeon, a qualified general appraiser and proprietor of Spurgeon Appraisals.


Improved kitchens, toilets, and other critical components get the greatest attention

A recent redesign, according to Spurgeon, may increase the value of your property. "Updated kitchens and bathrooms have a significant influence on a home's value since these are the areas where a buyer would spend the most money if improvements were necessary."

In older houses, major components (expensive ones like a new roof or air conditioning system) are especially vital.

"A lot of times, an appraiser will come out and look at an air conditioner to see how old it is, or they will check permits when they pull permits," Fonesca adds. "When you tell them it was recently installed and it's a Trane air conditioner that cost $7,000," it's a different story." And we just spent this much for a new roof last year."


Ground-level swimming pools and porches may not add much to the value of a property

An in-ground swimming pool adds some value, but it depreciates in value owing to the care necessary, according to John Huston, a professional appraiser in St. Petersburg, Fla., who covers three counties and has appraised over 3,800 properties since 1999.

To put it another way, a $120,000 in-ground pool isn't always worth more than a $35,000 pool. "If you sold your pool, you won't receive $120,000," Fonseca predicted. "Each of you has a swimming pool in fine working condition." It doesn't matter who spent more money."

According to Spurgeon, more features don't often provide much value. "In our market, areas like porches, decks, and other outside living spaces have a lower influence," he adds.


The location of your house has a significant impact on its value

"Location, location, location," Spurgeon adds, revealing the single most essential aspect in determining a home's worth. While appraisers aren't obligated by Fannie Mae criteria to assess or rate a neighborhood, they do consider objective facts such as the home's location and any features that may impact its value and marketability.

  • Whether the location is urban, rural, or suburban; the rate of expansion; and the density of the area are all factors to consider
  • Attractiveness of the neighborhood: Employers, services, and public transportation are all easily accessible by foot
  • Market conditions are as follows: The length of time it took to sell a property recently, as well as whether prices and demand are rising or declining

When establishing the value of a property, appraisers consider both on-site and nearby property attributes

Appraisers take into account the lot's size, form, and topography, as well as easements and encroachments. The appraiser will take note of things like street utilities and vehicle access. The evaluation technique includes a determination of whether the home's attributes are marketable.

  • The zoning classification of a property determines whether it is acceptable for permitted use
  • Specific hazards include: Whether or not there are any unique dangers (such as environmental hazards), and whether or not the hazard affects the home's value or marketability
  • Flood zone according to FEMA: Whether or not the home is in a FEMA flood zone is an essential factor to consider
  • Improvements done away from the office Conditions on the job: Streets, alleys, sidewalks, lighting, curbs, and gutters are all things to keep an eye on. Any additional site conditions that might affect the home's marketability or value

FHA appraisers look for these things. According to Bethany White, a top Virginia Beach realtor with over 13 years of expertise, FHA appraisal guidelines are stricter than regular loan evaluations. FHA appraisers, like conventional loan appraisers, offer their opinion on a home's worth. FHA assessors, unlike traditional loan examiners, also look for health and safety risks.

While a standard loan assessor may consider the general condition of a house, the FHA's requirements go much farther. The following are some of the FHA appraisal standards that must be met prior to closing:

  • The appliances for sale must be in good functioning condition
  • The attic insulation should be free of leaks and damage. In addition, the attic area must be adequately ventilated
  • In the crawl area, water infiltration or standing water must be prevented
  • Around the structure, grading and drainage are necessary
  • The electrical system should be suitable for the kind of construction and in excellent functioning condition
  • The home must have a solid foundation
  • Heating and cooling systems must function properly
  • Chipped and peeling paint, particularly if lead paint is present, should be fixed as soon as possible (with homes built prior to 1978)
  • It's critical that the plumbing be in excellent shape
  • The life expectancy of the roof must be at least two years
  • In order for a termite infestation to be evident in the home, it must be hidden

If the house does not satisfy all of the FHA's appraisal criteria, the homeowner must ensure that all of the issues are resolved prior to closing. White continues, "The appraiser needs to go out and sign it."


Appraisals for refinances function in the same manner as appraisals for house sales do

Whether refinancing or buying, the overall appraisal technique is the same from the appraiser's standpoint. In both forms of assessments, an appraiser considers the same factors to determine a home's worth. An appraiser for a complete refinancing utilizes the same URAR form as one for a purchase loan.

Your lender will order the evaluation you'll need for your loan if you're refinancing. The lender may or may not need a complete examination. If the appraiser does not visit your property, a restricted assessment, such as a drive-by or hybrid evaluation, may be needed under the bank's underwriting requirements. White adds, "It really depends on who's doing the refinancing." "In your bank, it may be done differently."

Outside factors may have an impact on whether your lender requests a restricted examination, at least in the near term. According to Jolene Jacobs, a leading realtor who works with 80 percent more single family homes than the typical Royal Oak agent, drive-by appraisals were common during the epidemic, even for purchases. And, a few years ago, owing to a shortage of appraisers in the Michigan region, additional drive-by appraisals were done to satisfy demand.