Portland Area Real Estate Appraisal Discussion

January 14th, 2015 2:24 PM

Portland Appraiser Scope of Work

Portland, Oregon area homeowners, real estate agents, and attorneys often contact A Quality Appraisal, LLC wanting to know the value of a home, but not needing (nor desiring to pay for) an appraisal with the same level of research that is included in a “full” appraisal (like those required by banks for an 80% home loan).  As an appraiser, if I provide an opinion of value or even a range of value, I am furnishing an appraisal and I must be able to document research and report findings in a manner that is consistent with the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP).  USPAP states that appraisers, “…must determine and perform the scope of work necessary to develop credible assignment results.” 

Appraisers are licensed professionals held to high standards.  Appraisal clients may not know what level of research is necessary for credible results, so the appraiser must learn how the client plans to use the appraisal and assist with deciding on a product that produces results appropriate for the intended use.  USPAP states that, “Appraisers have broad flexibility and significant responsibility in determining the appropriate scope of work....”  USPAP further states, “The credibility of assignment results is always measured in the context of the intended use.”  For this reason, A Quality Appraisal, LLC offers multiple residential appraisal products featuring scopes of work that specifically target a range of intended use.  Examples follow.

Desktop Appraisals:  We offer several desktop appraisal report options that do not include an interior inspection or even an onsite viewing of the subject property.  The desktop appraisal report looks the same as other appraisal reports, just without a measurement sketch or photos of the subject property.  A desktop appraisal might produce credible results for a property that has significant information available online or through other sources, and the appraiser can make reasonable assumptions about features and condition.  A good time to use a desktop appraisal might be soon after a property has sold on the area multiple listing service and there are adequate interior photos and descriptions available.  We will not offer a desktop appraisal if the property is very unique and requires a personal viewing by the appraiser to understand its marketability.

Minimum Scope Appraisal:  We offer a proprietary product called a “Minimum Scope Appraisal Report.”  This appraisal can be produced from a desktop alone or it can also be done with an interior or exterior inspection.  This is a short USPAP compliant narrative report product that we developed for clients who just want the unbiased opinions of an appraiser without the cost.  In this appraisal report, there is less verification of data and more assumptions are made than in a typical full appraisal.  The analysis of comparable sales is usually qualitative rather than the dollar (quantitative) adjustments more commonly found in residential appraisal reports.  A good time to use a minimum scope appraisal might be for consulting or planning purposes.  Minimum scope appraisals can later be upgraded to a full appraisal if necessary, when the client understands that additional research can produce different value conclusions or recommendations.

Did I leave anything out or do you want to join in the conversation?  Let me know in the comments below.

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