In a contested divorce, other than the fight over who gets the children, deciding who gets the marital property can be a heated debate. In most cases, neither party want to give up their rights to the home. Rightfully so, it’s the home they’ve sometimes lived in for years and are emotionally and financially invested. Usually the decision can boil down to selling it and splitting the profit or allowing one party to keep it. Whether you and your spouse have reached a divorce settlement or the judge has ordered you all to divide assets, knowing the true value of your home and having the right certified appraiser on your side is vital.
Is an appraisal necessary?
The only way to know the true value of your home, is to get an appraisal from a certified appraiser. Establishing value for your home is key to insure you are well equipped when filing a divorce. A common misconception people seem to have when deciding whether or not to get their home appraised is that if an appraisal has been done on their home at one point or another, it is still valid. Most state courts require a recent appraisal done by a certified real estate appraiser when determining the market value of the home. If you’ve gotten an appraisal in the last 3 months, there is a good chance the value of your home has changed. With a fluctuating housing market, a house appraised at $150k 4 months ago may be worth thousands more today. Not to mention if any renovations or upgrades have been done following the appraisal.
Our appraisers are trained to analyze your home inside and out. They begin with assessing your home, noting square footage and any upgrades done (most importantly to your kitchen and bathrooms). They then pull homes in your neighborhood that have sold in the last year. Paying close attention to those who have sold in the last 90 days. If your home has features that the others do not have, the appraiser adds to your home’s value. The reverse applies if your home does not have features that the others do, value is then deducted from your home.
Do I need a separate appraiser from my spouse?
In most divorce cases spouses usually want their own separate appraiser. If things are cordial between the two spouses, they may agree with going with one appraiser and sharing the cost. In a situation of having two different appraisers and two different values, the court might settle on a mid-point in-between the two.
At Appraisals by Michael, we’ve worked with attorneys in Georgia on delicate matters such as divorce for over 15 years. We assemble well-supported appraisal reports for court hearings on an as-needed basis. Judges rely on our expertise when determining the value of the marital home. A certified appraiser should be ready and willing to appear in court or mediation on your behalf to verify and back up the value he/she concluded. Contact us for more information or to schedule your appraisal today!
To get in touch with an appraiser in your area or for more information click on one of the areas below closest to you:
Alpharetta|Brookhaven|Buckhead|CobbCounty|Dekalb County|Dunwoody|Fulton County|Gwinnett County|Marietta|Sandy Springs
When you find yourself in a profession that requires to poke around the innermost workings of a person’s home, you are bound to come across some unexpected extremities. While you may commonly be faced with a subtle indentation or loose floorboard, many inspectors and appraisers are delighted to find the occasional surprise. As with any job, unforeseen circumstances are often entertaining and break up the daily redundancy. We collected a few pictures taken by home inspectors and appraisers while on the job that surprised them at the time, and are bound to surprise you as well.
An Appraisal License is the same as an Appraisal Certification.
A licensed appraiser is the lowest level of accreditation for a professional appraiser, without requiring supervision. To receive a license in the state of Georgia, one must complete 150 hours of classes, dedicated to basic appraisal skills and procedures. A certified residential and commercial appraiser must complete 210 hours of coursework, on top of the education a licensed appraiser must receive.
A certified home appraiser is able to work on properties of any size, value, or complexity. On the other hand, an appraiser with simply a license can only appraise property less than $1,000,000. There is a clear benefit to being a certified appraiser, and one should always take the time to research their appraiser’s educational background.
Appraiser do the same thing ad home inspectors
Contrary to popular belief, the job of an appraiser compared to that of a home inspector is entirely different. An appraiser surveys the value of the home and offers their opinion accompanied by a report of their findings. A home inspector searches for damages and issues within the home to determine its condition, and essentially inform the client of the goings on beneath their roof.
Appraisers enter situations with a personal agenda.
It is rarely beneficial to the appraiser to enhance or decrease numbers in their appraisal report. They are typically the only unbiased party in the entire equation. It is a normal reaction to initially blame your appraiser for an unexpected value, however, after a minute or so of consideration it should become evident that this is a third party service that receives no reward for a higher or lower appraisal value.
Your home improvements will be reflected monetarily in the appraisal.
Many homeowners expect a higher appraisal value because of their personal additions to the home. This could mean a swing outside, an added-on balcony or a renovated bathroom. Sadly, this is not normally the case. The money put into these special projects is usually not directly reflected on the appraisal value.
Appraisers own the appraisal report.
Unfortunately, once an appraisal report has been completed it is technically in the hands of the client. Whether it be the owner or the lender, they reserve the right to deny anybody else the opportunity to view the report.
They don’t care about any of your input
While appraisers remain trained professionals, this does not mean they are completely versed with your home in its entirety. There is the possibility that they may not be aware of certain market trends, neighborhood sales and home repairs. Appraisers are open to communication with their client, and while it may not always have a direct effect on the outcome it is essentially beneficial for overall consideration.
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