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Some great hints to expedite your appraisal from Cornerstone Appraisals

To appraise a property, an appraiser is legally required to be licensed by the state when the transaction involves any federal financial regulatory agency such as Fannie Mae, FDIC, etc. Contact us if you have any questions about the appraisal process.

To simplify the appraisal process, it's helpful to have these documents ready for the appraiser:

  • A plot plan or survey of the house and land (if available).

  • Records on the latest purchase of the property in the last three years.

  • Information on any written private easements, such as a shared driveway with a neighbor.

  • A list of any personal property that is part of the home and you intend to be sold with the home, such as an oven, or a washer and dryer.

  • Any documents, such as a title policy with information on encroachments or easements encroachments or easements.

  • Most recent real estate tax bill and or legal description of the property.

  • Home inspection reports, or other recent reports for termites, EIFS (synthetic stucco) wall systems, septic systems and wells.

  • Brag sheet that lists major home improvements and enhancements, the amount of their purchase and date of their installation (for example, the addition of insulation or roof repairs) and permit confirmation (if available).

  • A copy of the current listing agreement with broker's data sheet and purchase agreement if a sale is "pending".

  • Any "Homeowners Associations" agreements or, if applicable, condo covenants or fees.

  • A list of "suggested" improvements when the property is being appraised "as complete".

When the appraiser has arrived, you do not need to escort him or her along on the entire site inspection, but generally you'll want to be present to answer questions about your property and identify any home improvements.

Here are some other helpful recommendations:

  • Accessibility: Appraisers are very detailed in their inspections. We recommend that all areas of the home are accessible, especially the attic and crawl space.

  • Housekeeping: Appraisers see quite a few of homes a year and aren't surprised at seeing a bit of clutter, but they're human beings too! A good impact can translate into a better value for your home.

  • Maintenance: We generally suggest repairing small things like leaky faucets, missing door handles and trim.

  • FHA and VA Inspection Items: If your borrower is applying for either an FHA or VA loan, be sure to ask your appraiser if there are extra things that should be done before they arrive. Some items they may recommend might be: having smoke detectors on every floor of the home and especially near bedrooms, scraping and touching up where there's paint peeling, eliminating pull-chain lights in areas other than the basement or attic.