A home appraisal and a home inspection are done for separate reasons. They are not interchangeable and provide you with different types of information. It is important to understand the purpose of a home appraisal versus a home inspection. This knowledge will enable you to hire the right person and receive the data you need about your residential property.
A Home Appraisal
A home appraisal is an expert opinion on the value of your property. You order a home appraisal for multiple reasons including during the home loan application process, when dividing property during a divorce, settling an estate, and listing a home for sale. A residential appraiser considers the property’s location, square footage, and condition as well as any upgrades when determining the fair market value of your home. An appraiser is not inspecting the mechanical systems or structure of the house for deficiencies or safety issues.
Choosing a Residential Appraiser
It is important to hire a state licensed residential appraiser. The appraiser will analyze both the data they collect on your home and the local market data to arrive at the value of your property. You want to hire an appraiser who is knowledgeable about your area. This knowledge ensures that they use the most relevant data to arrive at their opinion of value for your home.
A Home Inspection
A home inspection is a visual examination of the systems and structure of the house. You usually order a home inspection when a house is under contract for purchase. According to the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI), a typical home inspection will include “the condition of the home’s heating system, central air conditioning system (temperature permitting), interior plumbing system, electrical system, the roof, attic and visible insulation, walls, ceilings, floors, windows and doors, and the foundation, basement and structural components.” A home inspector does not provide an opinion of the value of the property that they are inspecting.
Choosing a Home Inspector
When choosing a home inspector, ASHI recommends hiring someone who is licensed by your state. You should also ask questions about the home inspector’s experience and specialties. Lastly, make sure that you are comfortable with the inspector’s communication style. This is important since you will be using the inspection report to make decisions about the property.
Make Sure You Have the Information You Need
While residential appraiser and home inspectors have different areas of expertise, they both provide homeowners with important information about their property. With over 25 years of experience appraising homes in the Dallas Fort Worth area, Stafford Appraisals specializes in appraising residential properties in Collin and Denton county and has extensive knowledge of the local market. We accept orders for appraisals from both lenders and private homeowners and look forward to working with you.