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It is mandated by the government that a real estate appraiser acquire and maintain a license to create appraisal reports for federally-related transactions in Hawaii. You also have the right to demand a copy of the finished report from your lending agency. Contact us if you have any concerns about the appraisal procedure.

Rehkemper Brothers LLC discusses myths and realities about real estate appraisals and appraisers

Myth: Assessed value generally will be equal to market value.
Reality: It is probable that Hawaii, like most states, supports the suggestion that the assessed value equals the market value; however, this is not always true. Sometimes when interior remodeling has been done and the assessor is not aware of the improvement or other homes in the area have not been reassessed for a good length of time, it may vary widely.

Myth: Depending on whether the appraisal is done for the buyer or the seller, the cost of the property will vary.
Reality: There is no real interest on the part of the appraiser in the outcome of the analysis, therefore he will complete his work with impartiality and independence, no matter of for whom the appraisal is written.

Myth: Market value should mirror replacement cost.
Reality: Without any influence from any outside parties to purchase or sell, market value is what a willing buyer would pay a willing seller for a specific home. Replacement cost is the dollar amount needed to rebuild a property in-kind.

Myth: There are specific methods that real estate appraisers use to determine the value of a home, like the price per square foot.
Reality: An appraisal is an amalgamation of data based on the property's size, location, proximity to some facilities, the condition of the house and the values of recent comparable sales. You can rely on Rehkemper Brothers LLC's appraisers to be ethical in assessing this data.

Myth: As houses increase in value by a specific percentage - in a strong economy - the homes in proximity are expected to increase by the same amount.
Reality: All appreciation of value is on an individual basis, concluded by information on relevant conditions and the data of comparable homes. This is true in excellent economic times as well as bad.

Myth: You can commonly see what a home is worth simply by looking at the exterior.
Reality: To conclude a solid value beyond all doubt, an appraiser must examine the house on a variety of factors based on area, condition, improvements, amenities, and current market trends. Obviously, none of these variables can be found simply by inspecting the property from the outside.

Myth: Since you're the one providing the money for the appraisal when applying for your loan to buy or refinance real estate, you own the ordered appraisal report.
Reality: Unless a lending agency releases its interest in the report, it is legally owned by the lending agency that purchased the appraisal. However, consumers have to be provided with a copy of the report upon written request, due to the Equal Credit Opportunity Act.

Myth: Home buyers need not be concerned with what is in their appraisal report so long as it exceeds the needs of their lending company.
Reality: It is very important for consumers to check over a copy of their appraisal report so that they can double-check the accuracy of the document, in case there is a need to question its accuracy. Remember, this is probably the most expensive and important investment a consumer will ever make. There is a wealth of information contained in a report that should be useful to the home buyer in the future, such as the legal and physical description of the property, square footage measurements, list of comparable properties in the neighborhood, neighborhood description and a narrative of current real-estate activity and/or market trends in the region.

Myth: Appraisers are hired only to estimate building values in home sales involving mortgage-lending deals.
Reality: Appraisers can have many varied qualifications and designations which allow them to provide a multitude of different services including - but certainly not limited to - advice on estate planning, tax assessment, zoning, dispute resolution in many different legal situations and cost analysis.

Myth: An appraisal report is no different than a home inspection report.
Reality: Appraisal reports are completely different than a home inspection report. The job of the appraiser is to conclude an opinion of value in the appraisal process and through writing the report. The job of a home inspector is to determine the condition of the home and its main components, then write a report on these conclusions.

Contact our professional staff if you have any other questions about appraisers, appraising or real estate in Honolulu or Mililani, Hawaii.