Every year, many people in the United States buy, sell or refinance their property. Most, if not all, of these transactions, include a simple line item for an appraisal. It has become an understood and accepted part of a real estate transaction. ''Let's bring in the expert and make sure we're not spending too much on this property.''
But is this the only reason to get an appraisal? Are there other times when the services of a certified, licensed, independent real estate professional might come in handy?
Property Tax Challenges
Everyone has a different perspective of what a house is worth. And it's the tax assessor that seems to always come in at the high end of the scale! Challenging the tax assessment has become an annual ritual in many parts of the country. Unfortunately, most people go into these challenges unarmed. They may pull some information from the internet to support their claims but have no factual basis other than: ''It wasn't worth that much last year.'' Our appraisers can help in these situations. Appraisal documents carry a lot of weight when you appear before an appeals board.
Private Mortgage Insurance or PMI is the supplemental insurance that many lenders require home buyers to purchase when the amount loaned is more than 80% of the home's value. This extra payment is included in the monthly mortgage payment.
PMI is often forgotten about, which is unfortunate because it becomes unnecessary when the loan's remaining balance dips below the 80% level. With the real estate taking off, it would be worth ordering an appraisal to see if market appreciation can help you remove your PMI payment.