What do appraisers look for?

Common Questions or FAQs


How do I prepare for a home appraisal?

Just similar to how you would when you have guests over, nothing crazy. We are looking at the layout, features, quality and maintenance, not the minor items of storage or cleanly.

Does an appraiser come inside the house?

Typically all the time, unless a lender orders a drive by appraisal, which is rare with our clients. 

What do appraisers look at when appraising a home?

We are looking at the layout, features, quality and maintenance, not the minor items of storage or cleanly.

Should I get an appraisal before refinancing? it is an option to gauge if it is reasonable to do but not necessary. 

Does a messy house affect an appraisal? Not in general as appraisers are looking for quality, condition and maintenance levels. 

How can I get my house appraised for free? Only a certified appraiser can appraise a property, with us not knowing any such professional offering their services for free. Do not rely on Zillow or any other online services as they have no clue of the condition, quality, updates and sometimes even the size if public records are off or unavailable. Realtors do and cannot provide appraisals by law. 

Do appraisers take pictures? Yes, typically of all rooms.


How long does a home appraisal take? Typically the observations take 30 mins to an hour.

How long does it take to close on a house after the appraisal? Typically 48 to 60 hours, sometimes sooner. 

What is the typical it cost to get your house appraised?

It varies on purpose, use and complexity but can be near or under $300 for a restricted use appraisal to over $500 depending on the size or uniqueness of the property. 

Can you get a house appraised before making an offer? Yes it is a good option if unsure about the price being fair or market. Or if you do not trust an agent you are dealing with. 

Can a real estate agent do an appraisal? No


What is a Restricted Use Appraisal?

A restricted-use appraisal report is a short written document that essentially states all pertinent data as well as an opinion of value. Because of the absence of some of the extensive data and analysis included, this report is less than the summary or self-contained report, and restricted for the use of the client only, per their needs and agreed scope of work. 

This type of report is an option for a single user or partnership(under agreement) that is in need of an appraisal for decision making purposes or similar. This more limited or short appraisal format is not an option for situations of Estate, Assessment Appeal, Divorce, Bankruptcy or an insured financial transaction, due to the multiple users of the report intended or unintended. 


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