Next Day Appraisals, Inc. has answers to "Frequently Asked Questions"

Next Day Appraisals, Inc. is happy to address any questions you might have about appraisals or real estate in Orange County. Feel free to contact us today.

Describe an appraisal
What does an appraiser do?
What are the reasons a person would require services from Next Day Appraisals, Inc.?
Is an appraisal the same as a home inspection?
What is the difference between an appraisal and a comparative market analysis (CMA)?
What's in an appraisal report?
After completing the appraisal, what guarantee is there that the value indicated is accurate?
What are the requirements to be a certified appraiser?
Who do appraisers work for?
Where does an appraiser get the information used to estimate values in Orange County or other areas?
How can a licensed appraiser help me?
What exactly is PMI and how can I get rid of it?
Does the appraiser need anything from the homeowner in advance?
Define "Market Value"
Does the appraisal belong to the bank or the consumer?
How can I get the most ROI out of home improvements?



Describe an appraisal   (Back to top)

The process of creating an appraisal report deals with an evaluation which leads to an opinion of value. This opinion or estimate is found by using a formal process that usually utilizes the three main "common approaches to value". The Cost Approach is one of the approaches that real estate appraisers use to find the value of a home; it involves figuring what the improvements would cost less physical deterioration, plus the land value. Another of the methods is the Sales Comparison Approach - which concerns discovering a comparable analysis to other similar nearby properties which have recently sold. Being the most common approach, the Sales Comparison Approach is considered the most accurate and best indicator of market value for a property. The Income Approach is generally used for figuring out the market value of income-producing properties based on what an investor would pay based on the amount of capital a property would bring in.

What does an appraiser do?   (Back to top)

An appraiser forumlates an unprejudiced and well supported assessment of market value, to be used in making real estate transactions. Appraisers reveal the details of their investigation in appraisal reports.


What are the reasons a person would require services from Next Day Appraisals, Inc.?   (Back to top)

There are many reasons to order an appraisal from Next Day Appraisals, Inc. with the usual reason being real estate and mortgage transactions. Other reasons for purchasing an report include:
  • If you are applying for a loan.
  • To lower your tax burden.
  • To show a homeowner has 30% equity and remove insurance.
  • To challenge inflated property taxes.
  • To deal with an estate.
  • To offer you a leg-up when purchasing a home.
  • To determine a reasonable sales price when listing your home.
  • To defend your rights if your property is being taken by means of eminent domain in a condemnation case.
  • Because an official agency such as the IRS requires it.
  • It's possible you could have to deal with being in a lawsuit - an appraisal will help.
For a more detailed description of the appraisal process click here.


Is an appraisal the same as a home inspection?   (Back to top)

Appraisers do not do provide residential property inspections and are not home inspectors. A third-party home inspector will judge the structure of the home, from the top to the bottom. The stereotypical home inspector's report will contain an evaluation of the condition of the home's heating system, central air conditioning system (temperature permitting), interior plumbing and electrical systems, the roof, attic, and visible insulation, walls, ceilings, floors, windows and doors, the foundation, basement, and visible structure.

What is the difference between an appraisal and a comparative market analysis (CMA)?   (Back to top)

Simply, they have nothing in common. The CMA relies on indistinct local market trends. An appraisal utilizes comparable sales that can be validated by public record. Also, the appraisal checks other factors like condition, neighborhood and construction costs. A CMA delivers a "ball park figure." Delivering a defensible and careful analysis, an appraisal will give a clear opinion of value.

The person creating the report is frankly the most significant difference between a CMA and an appraisal. A CMA is created by a real estate agent who may or may not be trained in technical valuation concepts or even have a handle on market trends. The appraisal is produce by a licensed, certified professional who makes a living out of valuing properties. Likewise, the agent has something at stake since they get a commission based on the property's selling price - their commission - whereas the appraiser is bound by a code of ethics to accept a flat sum for assignments, regardless of their value conclusion.

What's in an appraisal report?   (Back to top)

The main objective of an appraisal document is to give a value opinion, and depending on the scope of the report, you'll usually see the following:
  • The client and whose purposes the appraisal is to serve.
  • How the appraisal is supposed to be used.
  • The reason for the appraisal.
  • Precisely what "value" attribute is being reported and what that value means.
  • The effective date of the appraisal.
  • Characteristics of the property that have a bearing on the value, including: location, physical description, legal attributes, economic attributes, the property rights in question, and non-real estate items included in the valuation, such as personal property, trade fixtures and even intangible considerations.
  • Any known easements, restrictions, encumbrances, leases, reservations, covenants, contracts, declarations, special assessments, ordinances, and the like.
  • Division of interest, such as fractional interest, physical segment and partial holding.
  • What was included in the process of completing the appraisal.
For a more in depth look at the work that goes into an appraisal report click here: Sample Appraisal Report


After completing the appraisal, what guarantee is there that the value indicated is accurate?   (Back to top)

In the documentation of an appraisal, each appraiser must ensure the following:
  • That the information analysis utilized in the appraisal was suitable.

  • Whether individually or collectively, there were no crucial errors contained in the appraisal, nor any material details left out.

  • That appraisal services were done in a careful and judicious fashion.

  • That a solid, supportable appraisal report was imparted.
To become a state licensed appraiser, there are extensive education requirements as well as on the jobexperience that must be logged - all with the objective of being able to provide unbiased value opinions. Plus, appraisers must follow a strict industry code of ethics and observe national standards of practice for real estate appraisal. The guidelines for carrying out an appraisal and reporting its results are insured by enforcement of the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP).


   (Back to top) Regulations regarding licensing and certification vary from state to state. However, licensing and certification is commonly associated with many hours of coursework, tests and experience working under a supervisory appraiser. Once licensed, he or she is required to engage in continuing education courses so that the license doesn't expire. To see the specific requirements for any state click here.

Who do appraisers work for?   (Back to top)

Typically, appraisers are employed by mortgage lenders to estimate the value of a home involved in a loan transaction. Appraisers also provide opinions in litigation cases, tax matters and investment decisions.

Where does an appraiser get the information used to estimate values in Orange County or other areas?   (Back to top)

One of the main tasks an appraiser must accomplish is to collect property data. Data can be described as either Specific or General. Specific data is gathered from the property itself; Location, condition, amenities, size and other specific data are gathered by the appraiser while on site.

General data is gathered from a variety of sources. Local Multiple Listing Services (MLS) provide information on recently sold homes that could be used as comparables. To double-check actual sales prices, we look at items in the assessor's office and other public documents that are usually online nowadays. Flood zone data is available from FEMA data outlets, such as a la mode's InterFlood system.

And last but not least, the appraiser gathers general data from his or her past experience in doing assignments for other houses in the same market.


How can a licensed appraiser help me?   (Back to top)

An appraisal is a worthwhile whenever the value of your home is pertinent to a financial decision. For those selling a home, you'll want to figure out the price that gets you the most profit but doesn't leave your home on the market too long; an appraisal can help with that. If you're buying, it makes sure you don't overpay. For parties settling an estate or divorce, an appraisal from Next Day Appraisals, Inc. is the best way to ensure assets are divided evenly. Simply put, a home is often the single, largest financial asset anybody owns. Knowing its true value is essential to making smart financial decisions.


What exactly is PMI and how can I get rid of it?   (Back to top)

PMI is the common abbreviation for for Private Mortgage Insurance. It protects the lender in the event a borrower is unable to pay on the loan and the value of the home is lower than the balance of the loan. You can have your PMI dropped once you've achieved 20% equity in your home through appreciation and principal payments.

The money you keep from getting rid of your PMI pays for the appraisal in a matter of months. Nobody is more qualified than Next Day Appraisals, Inc. when it comes to analyzing real estate appreciation in Huntington Beach and Orange County. Contact us today.

Does the appraiser need anything from the homeowner in advance?   (Back to top)

The first step in most appraisals is the home inspection. During this process, we will come to your home and measure it, determine the layout of the rooms inside, confirm all aspects of the home's general condition, and take several photos of your house for inclusion in the report. Is there anything you can do to help? Yes there is! First, be sure the appraiser has easy access to the exterior of the house . Trim any shrubs and move any items that would make it difficult to measure the structure. On the inside, make sure the appraiser can get to items like furnaces and water heaters.

To help speed things along plus ensure a more accurate report, attempt if possible to have the following items:
  • Information on the latest purchase of the property in the last three years.
  • Any paperwork, such as a title policy with information on encroachments or easements encroachments or easements.
  • Information on "Homeowners Associations" or condominium covenants and fees.
  • Brag sheet that lists major home improvements and enhancements, the date of their installation and their cost (for example, the addition of Insulation or roof repairs) and permit confirmation (if available).
  • Most recent real estate tax bill and or legal description of the property.

Define "Market Value"   (Back to top)

In real estate appraising, Market Value is commonly defined as:

"The most probable price (in terms of money) which a property should bring in a competitive and open market under all conditions requisite to a fair sale, the buyer and seller each acting prudently and knowledgeably, and assuming the price is not affected by undue stimulus. Implicit in this definition is the consummation of a sale as of a specified date and the passing of title from seller to buyer under conditions whereby: the buyer and seller are typically motivated; both parties are well informed or well advised, and acting in what they consider their best interests; a reasonable time is allowed for exposure in the open market; payment is made in terms of cash in United States dollars or in terms of financial arrangements comparable thereto; and the price represents the normal consideration for the property sold unaffected by special or creative financing or sales concessions granted by anyone associated with the sale."



Does the appraisal belong to the bank or the consumer?   (Back to top)

In most real estate transactions, the appraisal is ordered by the lender. Even though it's the buyer that eventually pays for the report, the lender is the intended user. The buyer is entitled to a copy of the appraisal - it's usually included with all the other closing documents - but is not entitled to use the report for any other purpose without permission from the lender.

It's different when it's the homeowner hiring the appraiser for things outside securing a mortgage. In these cases, the appraiser may define the purpose of the appraisal; for PMI removal, or estate planning or tax challenges, for example. If not stipulated otherwise, the home owner can do whatever they want with the appraisal.


How can I get the most ROI out of home improvements?   (Back to top)

This really depends on where the home is. For example, if you live in a cold region, insulated windows can be a real plus. But they aren't as attractive in a warm-weather climate.

No matter where you go, however, renovating a kitchen is almost always a safe move. One recent study revealed that putting $20,000 into a kitchen remodel would add about $17,500 to the value of the home - or about an 88% return on investment. Bathrooms weren't far behind, returning 85%. Adding bedrooms and baths can also boost the value of your home (when done well) as long as your home doesn't then become an oddball for your neighborhood in terms of size.