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Understanding Exterior Field Appraisals

Sep 1

One may have both interior and exterior field appraisals done by licensed real estate appraisers. In most instances only exterior examination is needed.


Even in cases where an appraisal is requested, there may be a limit on the total amount of money that can be borrowed. There are a number of reasons for such limits. First, you may have had your home inspected and found defects that would not have been discovered if the inspection had been closed under the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA). Such defects would have required closing the inspection within a reasonable time after closing, and RESPA does require such closed inspections.


You may also have requested an appraisal on the basis of recent sales of similar homes in your neighborhood that sold within a relatively short period of time. For example, a recent string of high-priced homes in your area that recently hit the market may make it seem that there is no valid reason to purchase your home at this time. That impression could not be more wrong! In these circumstances it is usually appropriate for you to obtain an appraisal of similar homes within your immediate vicinity to yours to help you make an informed decision as to whether or not to move forward.


If you were building a new home and found a problem with one wall, you would simply take down the home survey (or building report) and obtain the new value of your lot. However, if the problem was hidden from the appraisal collector, they would ask you to go through the process of getting the problem repaired before determining the new value. Your lender may also request that you repair the problem before they release the appraisal. It is very important to remain patient during this process, as the longer it takes the longer it will be for you to sell your home.


Exterior field appraisals can be a very useful tool when purchasing or selling a home. However, make sure you get one from a reliable appraisal company. It will save you time, money, and aggravation.