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What are the components of an appraisal?

Getting real estate is the most significant transaction some could ever consider. Whether it's where you raise your family, a seasonal vacation property or an investment, purchasing real property is a complex financial transaction that requires multiple parties to pull it all off.

To learn more about appraising, click here to see a short video or call us today to talk about your specific property.


Most of the participants are quite familiar. The most familiar person in the exchange is the real estate agent. Then, the bank provides the financial capital needed to bankroll the deal. Ensuring all aspects of the sale are completed and that a clear title passes to the buyer from the seller is the title company.

So who's responsible for making sure the property is consistent with the amount being paid?   This is where the appraiser comes in.   We provide an unbiased estimate of what a buyer might expect to pay - or a seller receive - for a property, where both buyer and seller are informed parties. A professional Texas licensed appraiser from Appraisals In 48 will ensure you as an interested party are informed.

Inspecting the subject property

Our first responsibility at Appraisals In 48 is to inspect the property to determine its true status. We must see aspects of the property first hand, such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the location, and so on, to ensure they really exist and are in the shape a typical buyer would expect them to be. The inspection often includes a sketch of the house, ensuring the square footage is proper and conveying the layout of the property. Most importantly, the appraiser looks for any obvious amenities - or defects - that would affect the value of the property.

After the inspection, an appraiser employs two or three approaches when determining the value of the property: paired sales analysis and, in the case of a rental property, an income approach.

Cost Approach

Here, we gather information on local construction costs, the cost of labor and other factors to figure out how much it would cost to replace the property being appraised. This estimate commonly sets the maximum on what a property would sell for. The cost approach is also the least used predictor of value.

Paired Sales Analysis

Appraisers become very familiar with the neighborhoods in which they work. We innately understand the value of certain features to the homeowners of that area. Then, the appraiser looks up recent sales in the area and finds properties which are 'comparable' to the subject in question. By assigning a dollar value to certain items such as remodeled rooms, types of flooring, energy efficient items, patios and porches, or extra storage space, we add or subtract from each comparable's sales price so that they are more accurately in line with the features of subject property.

  • For example, if the comparable property has an extra half bath that the subject doesn't, the appraiser may subtract the value of that half bath from the sales price of the comparable home.
  • In the case where the subject has something such as an extra half bath that a comparable doesn't have, the appraiser might add the value of that bath to the comparable property.
At Appraisals In 48, we are experts when it comes to knowing the value of real estate features in Spring and Harris County neighborhoods. This approach to value is most often awarded the most weight when an appraisal is for a home purchase.

Valuation Using the Income Approach

In the case of income producing properties - rental houses for example - the appraiser may use an additional approach to value. In this case, the amount of income the property generates is factored in with other rents in the area for comparable properties to give an indicator of the current value.

Putting It All Together

Examining the data from all applicable approaches, the appraiser is then ready to stipulate an estimated market value for the subject property. Note: While this amount is probably the most reliable indication of what a property would sell for in an open market, it probably will not be the final sales price. Depending on the specific situations of the buyer or seller, their level of urgency or a buyer's desire for that exact property, the closing price of a home can always be driven up or down. But the appraised value is typically used as a guideline for lenders who don't want to loan a buyer more money than the property would likely sell for in an open marketplace. Here's what it all boils down to: An appraiser from Appraisals In 48 will help you discover the most accurate property value, so you can make profitable real estate decisions.