PREPARATION

Before an Appraiser arrives, there are a few things you should know. By law, an appraiser must, at a minimum, be state certified to perform appraisals prepared for federally-related transactions. Further, by law, you are entitled to receive a copy of the completed appraisal report from your lender.  You are the lender's client and the lender is the appraiser’s client. The appraiser cannot legally communicate the results of the appraisal report to anyone unless authorized by the client.

​To facilitate the appraisal process, it's beneficial to have these documents ready for the appraiser: 
•A plot plan or survey of the house and land (if readily available.) 
•Home Owner Association dues/fees, covenants and the services provided. 
•Written property agreements, such as a shared road, water system or septic system maintenance.
•Title policy that describes encroachments or easements, if any. 
•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 upgrades, the date of their installation and their cost (for example, the addition of central air conditioning or roof repairs) and permit confirmation (if available.) 
•A list of "proposed" improvements if the property is to be appraised "As Complete." 

​Once your appraiser has arrived, you do not need to accompany him or her along on the entire site inspection, but you should be available to answer questions about your property and be willing to point out any home improvements. After all, no one knows the nuances of your home better than you do. 

Here are some other suggestions: 
•Accessibility: Make sure that all areas of the home are accessible, especially to the attic and crawl space. 
•Housekeeping: Appraisers see hundreds of homes a year and will look past most clutter, but they're human beings too! New FMNA rules that the appraiser take interior photos; it is important that you help create a good impression. 
•Maintenance: Repair minor components like leaky faucets, missing door handles and trim. 
​•FHA/VA Inspection Items: If you or your borrower is applying for an FHA/VA loan, be sure to let us know, as there are specific items to address before we come. Some items they may recommend might be: install smoke detectors or install handrails on all stairways (check with the county building inspector at 360-378-2116 for code requirements); remove peeling paint and repaint the effected area; provide inspection access to the attic and crawl spaces. (Yes, the FHA/VA can be a bit persnickety, but they do have some pretty good loan products and are, ultimately, looking toward your best interests.)