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By Ryan Lundquist

Tips for talking with appraisers (click thumbnail to view larger image)

If you’re new to real estate, congratulations. I hope your career really takes off in coming time. While our paths may never cross on a transaction, you will definitely be meeting with appraisers and probably developing some pretty strong feelings about some of them too. Today I hope to help you understand appraisers a bit more and give you some tips for working with them.

Me sharing at the Elk Grove regional realtor meeting last week (photo by Realtor Danny Camarena)

Seven Things to Know About Working with Appraisers

  1. Quality Spectrum: Without really knowing the industry, from afar it’s easy to think that appraisers are mathematical wizards who make precise calculations, but you’ll soon learn that’s not the case. Some appraisers do a great job interpreting the market while others do a lousy job.
  2. Image purchased at 123rf dot com and used with permission - 14688774_s - smallerCan’t Handle Everything: Just because an appraiser holds a license to appraise does not mean the appraiser can or should appraise every property. I find the general public and even some in the real estate community make this assumption. Some jobs will simply be too complex or outside the scope of what an appraiser has done before. In these cases it’s probably best to find an appraiser who already has the developed skill to appraise the type of property or situation you are working on. This is also why a good appraiser might say, “tell me about the property so I can see if I’m a good fit for the job” in the initial conversation about the property. Case-in-point: I referred two appraisals to colleagues last week who were better suited for the valuations at hand.
  3. Your Job & The Appraiser’s Job: Real estate agents are advocates, while appraisers are a neutral party to the transaction. I know you know this, but it’s important to consistently realize that appraisers don’t play on your team so to speak. An agent works to get the highest price for the seller or best opportunity for the buyer (and earn money when the deal closes), but the appraiser’s job is NOT to get the highest price or best scenario for either party, but rather measure the market and record findings in an appraisal report.
  4. Cranky Appraisers: I’ve heard constant feedback from real estate agents of appraisers who are impersonal, non-talkative during inspections and come across as cranky communicators. What’s …read more

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