Every week, we ask a real estate professional for their Short List, a collection of tips and recommendations on an essential topic in real estate. This week, we talked with Steve Scheuring, an agent with Baird & Warner in Oak Park, about ways to ensure a smooth appraisal.
3. Always meet the appraiser at the property for the initial appraiser visit. If you think you may be out of town when you get the call for the appointment, prepare your comps before you leave and have an associate on stand-by to meet the appraiser. Often times, appraisers say to me, “Well, you don’t have to be there, just give me access to the property.” No. After explaining the appraisal process to my sellers in the listing stage, they almost always demand I be there to meet the appraiser.
2. Prepare an analysis of comparables for the subject property to hand the appraiser during the visit. You are the only person that can have contact with the appraiser. Nobody knows the area better than you! I always print the “client” format of an MLS sheet of my comps, and I write on the bottom in bullet points how this property relates to my listing. You don’t want to offend the appraiser by assuming they do NOT know the area. Use a simple statement like, “Hey, I’m sure you know the area but thought I would have some comps for you as well. Here you go.”
1. In this market (post-credit crisis) the appraiser has a difficult and often stressful job. Do whatever you can to make your appraisal an easier task.
- Ask your seller ahead of time for an old survey, and have it out for the appraiser when he/she comes through.
- Have a list of the seller’s recent improvements as a part of your packet to hand the appraiser.
- Do your best to meet the appraiser at the time they initially ask of you. Their schedules are tight and demanding. If you can be as accommodating as possible, it can only help your cause and allow the appraiser to focus on the property.
- I even go as far as to offer the appraiser water or other refreshment while at the property. I do this especially in the summer months.
Many agents pass-off the appraisal as a by-product of the transaction. “Oh well, whatever happens, happens, right?” Not so. Be a participant in the appraisal process and increase your chances for a successful outcome.
Steve is Baird & Warner’s Oak Park/River Forest No. 1 agent, and he is in the Top 1 percent of Baird & Warner company-wide. A fourth-generateion Oak Park/River Forester, Steve utilizes more technology-based marketing tools than any other area agent or firm, including professional digital photography, website advertising, paid-for optimal listing placement, search engine optimization, local and national print advertising and in-home marketing.