Real Property Appraisals/Appraisel

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Question
I have a 2025 sq ft manufactured home that I am looking to refinance. The bank sent an appraiser to do the appraisal, the comp's are as follows; similar year model that sold in foreclosure at 120,000.. Second a home 4 years newer but with only 1188 sq ft that sold for 117,500 which is at what the county has it appraised at. and the third was a single wide 8 years older than mine with about 1280 sq ft. with 21 acres of land for 150,000.
My appraisal came in at 115,000.00 county has it assessed at 164,000. I have found similar homes that have sold for over 200,000 but the appraiser claim they are not listed in the MLS system and cannot be used for comparison. My question is are these considered legitimate comps to my property?

Answer
Michael,

First of all, the so-called "comps" the appraiser found and utilized are not comparable at all. They are substantially smaller.

Being listed in the MLS is an "easy" way for an appraiser to "verify" a transaction. Even if a property is listed in MLS, it still needs to be verified by a person with first-hand knowledge of the terms and conditions of this sale, usually the buyer, seller, listing agent, or selling agent. MLS listings contain the listing and selling agents names and phone numbers.

So, what this appraiser is saying is that these transactions that you located cannot be "easily" verified. There is a possibility that the lender you are dealing with has a stipulation that appraisers can only use market data that is listed in MLS, but this is very short sighted.   

Where did you locate these sales? If they came from, say, Public Records, you have beginning information for these sales - you now need to try to find someone who can verify these sales. You have seller and buyer names, property addresses, and property information that is in Public Records.

You might not be able to locate the sellers, they might be gone. But the Buyers probably live in these properties. There is no reason that you, or the appraiser for that matter, could not go to these properties and speak directly with the Buyer. I usually do this on a weekend when people are usually home.

I would also take the data to which you are referring to a local real estate agent, hopefully someone you know. Have the agent plug these addresses into the database, search ALL LISTING STATUSES - Active, Pending, Sold, Expired, Cancelled, Withdrawn - any other status in the local MLS. You may find one of the addresses that was recently listed, but Expired, was Withdrawn, etc. That's OK, it may not show in MLS as sold, but you now have the agent name and phone number and you, or the appraiser, can call this agent and get first hand information. Get copies of the listings, and make an additional copy of them. If you're really lucky, you'll find a "sold" listing for these properties that the appraiser missed.

Armed with this new data, you need to contact your lender, give them one of the copies of the data and have them forward this data to the appraiser for reconsideration. I am hopeful that this appraiser is professional enough to take the new information and complete a more competent valuation.

John C. Carlson
CA Certified General Real Estate Appraiser
Victorville and Diamond Bar, CA
www.jccrea.com  

Real Property Appraisals

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John C. Carlson

Expertise

Any questions regarding commercial and/or residential appraising, appraisals or real estate valuation such as: appraising as a profession, valuation techniques, comparable sales selection & analysis, the new HVCC and how it affects appraisers & Borrowers. Also, questions like: "Why did my appraisal come in low & what can I do about it?" I cannot answer questions about comparable data in areas in which I do not practice. I have expertise in most areas of So. California.

Experience

31-years both commercial and residential valuation experience. State of CA Certified General Real Estate Appraiser, licensed to appraise all property types. FHA Approved. Specialized expertise with historic, architectural & luxury residential property valuation. Experienced in industrial building and small commercial property valuation. Experienced Reviewer of appraisal reports and expertise with intensive forensic reviews to uncover fraudulent appraisal reports. Expert Litigation and Expert Witness experience.

Organizations
Associate Member of the Appraisal Institute. Associate Member of the Certified Fraud Examiners.

Publications
Numerous posts to Blogs. Please "Google" "John C. Carlson Real Estate Appraisals" where a list of responses I have made will show up.

Education/Credentials
Numerous classes by the Appraisal Institute since 1978 in the practice areas in which I specialize

Past/Present Clients
First Republic Bank Wells Fargo Bank California Bank & Trust Preferred Bank Numerous Attorneys.

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