A home purchase can be the most serious investment some will ever make. Whether it's where you raise your family, a second vacation property or a rental fixer upper, purchasing real property is a detailed financial transaction that requires multiple parties to see it through.
It's likely you are familiar with the parties having a role in the transaction. The real estate agent is the most known face in the transaction. Next, the bank provides the financial capital required to finance the transaction. The title company makes sure that all areas of the sale are completed and that the title is clear to transfer to the buyer from the seller.
So, what party makes sure the property is worth the purchase price? This is where the appraiser comes in. We provide an unbiased opinion 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 Barnes Appraisal Company will ensure, you as an interested party, are informed.
The inspection is where an appraisal begins
Our first duty at Barnes Appraisal Company is to inspect the property to determine its true status. We must see aspects of the property hands on, such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the location, living areas, etc, to ensure they really are there and are in the shape a reasonable buyer would expect them to be. To make sure the stated size of the property is accurate and describe the layout of the property, the inspection often entails creating a sketch of the floorplan. Most importantly, we identify any obvious amenities - or defects - that would have an impact on the value of the house.
Following the inspection, 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.
Here, we pull information on local building costs, labor rates and other factors to determine how much it would cost to replace the property being appraised. This figure usually sets the upper limit on what a property would sell for. It's also the least used predictor of value.
Analyzing Comparable Sales
Appraisers can tell you a lot about the subdivisions in which they appraise. They thoroughly understand the value of particular features to the homeowners of that area. Then, the appraiser researches recent transactions in the vicinity and finds properties which are 'comparable' to the real estate in question. By assigning a dollar value to certain items such as fireplaces, room layout, appliance upgrades, additional bathrooms or bedrooms, or quality of construction, we adjust the comparable properties so that they more accurately match the features of subject.
A true estimate of what the subject could sell for can only be determined once all differences between the comps and the subject have been evaluated. At Barnes Appraisal Company, we are experts in knowing the worth of particular items in Lawton and Comanche County neighborhoods. The sales comparison approach to value is usually given the most weight when an appraisal is for a real estate exchange.
Valuation Using the Income Approach
A third way of valuing approach to value is sometimes applied when a neighborhood has a reasonable number of renter occupied properties. In this situation, the amount of income the property produces is factored in with other rents in the area for comparable properties to give an indicator of the current value.
Putting It All Together
Examining the data from all applicable approaches, the appraiser is then ready to state an estimated market value for the property in question. Note: While this amount is probably the most accurate indication of what a house is worth, it may not be the final sales price. It'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'. But 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 the event they had to put the property on the market again. At the end of the day, an appraiser from Barnes Appraisal Company will help you discover the most fair and balanced property value, so you can make the most informed real estate decisions.