Appraising Appraisals

There are times when the client’s opinion of value differs from the appraiser’s opinion of value. This could be due to the appraiser’s mistake or omission, or the client’s lack of understanding of the appraisal process. Two recent articles, one intended for clients (Oh no! It’s low!, Realtor Magazine Online, 6/1/06) and one written for appraisers (A Better Way to Handle Value Disputes, Real Estate Valuation Magazine Online, Summer 2006) suggest ways to resolve the problem.

First, you’ll want to ask the appraiser’s client (if you’re not the actual client) to authorize the appraiser to talk to you.

Then look in the report for elements of confusion. First, are there any factual mistakes or omissions in the site or building descriptions? And second, do you know of any other sales or leases similar to the subject property that would have had an affect on value if the appraiser analyzed them? As important as these two factors are to the appraisal, it is possible that the appraiser was not aware of information you may have.

Most appraisers would be happy to reconsider an appraisal in the light of information that is new to them.

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