While no appraiser is infallible, his or her opinion of the value of your home is informed by rigorous training, numerous tests, several years of on-the-job experience and required continuing education. They are also required to substantiate every finding in their reports that could influence a home’s value. Appraisers and their employers (often appraisal management companies) are heavily regulated. Consequences of issuing deliberately misleading or biased reports can be severe, so appraisers work hard to remain impartial and keep personal value judgments and prejudices out of their work.
You may ask when is an appraisal service needed? Appraisals are generally required whenever real property is sold, mortgaged, taxed, insured, or developed. In most countries, appraisers are required to be licensed and certified to properly value property and land. So if you are looking to purchase a home in the near future you will notice that your bank will order an appraisal to value the property to make sure that it's worth the value that you are borrowing from them.
As mentioned before, an appraiser can generally choose from three approaches to determine value. One or two of these approaches will usually be most applicable, with the other approach or approaches usually being less useful. The appraiser has to think about the "scope of work", the type of value, the property itself, and the quality and quantity of data available for each approach. No overarching statement can be made that one approach or another is always better than one of the other approaches.
Real estate appraisal in Germany is partly codified by law. The federal Baugesetzbuch (abbr. BauGB, "German statutory code on building and construction'") contains guidelines on governing authorities, defines the term market value and refers to continuative rules (chapter 3, articles 192 ff.). Each municipality (city or administrative district) must form a Gutachterausschuss (appraisal committee), consisting of a chairman and honorary members. The committee gathers information on all real estate deals (it is mandatory to send a copy of each notarial purchase contract to the Gutachterausschuss) and includes it in the Kaufpreissammlung (purchase price database). Most committees publish an official real estate market report every two years, in which besides other information on comparables the land value is determined. The committees also perform appraisals on behalf of public authorities.
An appraisal is an unbiased professional opinion of a home's value. Appraisals are almost always used in purchase and sale transactions and commonly used in refinance transactions. In a purchase and sale transaction, an appraisal is used to determine whether the home's contract price is appropriate given the home's condition, location, and features. In a refinance, it assures the lender that it isn't handing the borrower more money than the home is worth.
I just wanted to let you know how helpful Mike Nichols was in helping us through a complicated situation in a real estate transaction where a tax certificate had been sold on the subject property. He went above and beyond the call of duty, patiently explaining the situation separately to all three parties involved. The issue was resolved with his help and his response was excellent.
Most jurisdictions have an appeal process for contesting an assessment. While the specific rules vary from one locality to the next, the process typically involves a hearing before an assessment appeal board. Taxpayers who have concerns about their assessment should visit their local Assessor's Office or its website to learn about the appeal process and what information is required in order to appeal a property tax assessment.