Dillon H. Fries & Associates

Real Estate Appraisers & Consultants

Specializing in Real Estate Appraisals for Relocations, Divorces, Estates, Tax Appeals, Mortgages, PMI removal and Listing or Purchasing Needs in the Metro Atlanta Area since 1974

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How much does an appraisal cost?

A: The cost of an appraisal is determined by the complexity of the assignment.  The purpose of the appraisal is one factor that determines the scope of work that is necessary to produce an accurate and credible report.  Larger homes generally take longer to floor plan and have more features that need to be analyzed and thus cost more to appraise in most cases.  Homes that are located on acreage versus in a subdivision also generally take longer and provide additional challenges.

Q: Why does an appraisal for listing purposes, relocation or divorce generally cost more than a mortgage loan appraisal?

A: A mortgage loan appraisal generally requires a more limited analysis as the date of valuation is the same as the date of inspection and involves only a retrospective analysis.  This type of an appraisal generally is prepared after a purchase price has been established and is used to determine the relative security of a loan. When one values a property for a relocation, listing purposes and in some cases for a divorce, the value sought is prospective or one that is to occur in the future.  In such a case the appraiser must evaluate market trends and should analyze listings, pending sales, as well as expired and withdrawn properties in addition to closed sales.  Additional care is also needed to properly reflect the other differences that often receive less emphasis in a mortgage loan appraisal.  The appraiser should be considering differences between comparables in condition, features, upgrades, renovation, appeal, site characteristics, quality of basement finish, etc. and not just make assumptions that all are similar.

Q: What is the basis for determining market value?

A: Market value is based upon the Principle of Substitution.  This principle is the basis for the comparable sales approach.  In a nut shell, One should not pay any more for a home than that which they can find a near like or very similar alternative.  Not only are recent sales considered, but also recent pending sales and active listings should be considered.  Many appraisers fail to research, analyze and reflect the impact of such properties in order to save time and cost of the appraisal however often limit the accuracy of the value.  Such appraisals often cost $150 less than a more complete analysis however may cost the users of the report many thousand dollars due to being inaccurate.  You get what you pay for!