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How to Dispute a Real Estate Appraisal in FloridaHow to Dispute a Real Estate Appraisal in Florida

How to Dispute a Real Estate Appraisal in Florida

16 Jul 2021

Generally, banks will only lend buyers enough funds to buy a property priced near an appraisal value. Consequently, many sellers have no chance to set the price higher, even when the appraisal was not fair to determine the property’s real value.

In this article, you will find out how to dispute a real estate appraisal in Florida.

Disputing a Real Estate Appraisal – Step-by-Step

Although you can dispute a real estate appraisal, it is not an easy task. Hence, before making any decision, it is crucial to consult with an expert title attorney to assess your situation. 

Many appraisers do not like to change the value of a property unless there is an error in the original appraisal report. Consequently, the first step to dispute a real estate appraisal is to get a full copy of the original appraisal.

Seeking Professional Guidance 

With a copy of the appraisal report in hand, you must seek professional guidance with an expert attorney to evaluate your options. Also, if you are having a hard time trying to get a copy of the appraisal report, consult with a legal expert to know what to do to obtain it.

Double-checking the Appraisal Report 

With the help of your attorney, you will make a detailed review of the appraisal report to look for any errors or comparisons that you do not agree with. In many cases, there is a possibility that the appraiser made a mistake while doing his/her job.

Common situations include placing your property in the wrong neighborhood, listing fewer rooms than the home has, and calculating less square footage. Other mistakes can negatively impact the appraisal process.

However, if there are no blatant errors in the report, you need to check the appraiser’s homes to compare with your property. 

Ultimately, a real estate appraisal is a professional opinion. The appraiser has to compare your property to similar homes to decide the current market value, which is a relative factor.

When appraising the value of a property, an appraiser can make inaccurate comparisons in several categories, including:

  • How long the property exists (e.g., newly built house, historical building, etc.)
  • The property’s square footage, size of the lot, and size of the building
  • The property’s current condition
  • The property’s location (neighborhood)
  • The property’s school district

Appraisers also evaluate factors such as if the property is built either as a customs house or tract house and if it has a stick-built structure or a modular structure. 

Generally, the most accurate appraisal will compare properties that are as close to your as possible. It is crucial to pay attention to this aspect. Some appraisers tend to assign a value to a specific neighborhood. 

Creating an Unofficial Appraisal  

Then, it is time to find comparable properties that demonstrate the value of your property. Plus, you can list every feature that increases the value of your property, such as upgrades, home improvements, renovations, an amazing view to a beach or wildlife reserve, etc.

After gathering all the information, you need to create an unofficial appraisal showing the true value of your property and a document that demonstrates the initial appraisal was not accurate.

In your report, make sure to include a comparison between the appraiser-chosen properties and the properties that have the same level of upgrades and improvements as yours.

Petitioning a Second Appraisal 

With the help of your attorney, you can also petition for a second appraisal with the original appraiser. In most cases, it will require you to ask the bank/lender that hires the appraiser to reconsider the assessment and do it one more time.

In this sense, your attorney can write a professional letter explaining the situation and challenging the accuracy of the original appraisal with feasible evidence.

Hiring Another Appraiser 

Although it is not the ideal solution, many people prefer to hire an appraiser by themselves than arguing with an appraiser hired by a bank/lender. Undoubtedly, hiring a professional appraiser on your own will cost money.

Nonetheless, suppose you are sure that your property is worth more. In that case, it may be worthwhile to hire another appraiser to get a better selling price on it. However, be aware that most lenders tend not to accept a seller’s appraisal, so make sure to assess your options before paying an appraiser on your own. 

How to Dispute a Real Estate Appraisal in Florida? – Contact Us Today 

At Marina Title, we have a team of legal experts to assess your situation and find the best strategy to challenge a home appraisal. Call us today at (305) 901-5628 or send us an email at Romy@MarinaTitle.com to schedule a consultation.

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