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Our Fees

Our Regular Fees for Homes Under 3,000 Sq. Ft.:

( Contact us for quotes on larger / more complex homes.)

1004 Single Family                            $350

1004 FHA Single Family                    $400

1073 Condo                                       $350

1073 FHA Condo                               $400

1075 Condo Drive By                        $275

2055 Single Family Drive By            $275

1025 2-4 Units W/O 216 & 1007    $500

Lots & Land                                      $400+

Desktop Valuation                            $150

Desk Review                                      $150

2000A Single Family Review           $250

2000A Multi Family Review             $300

1004D Inspection / Update            $100

216 Operation Income Statement $100

1007 Rent Schedule                        $100

 

Describe an appraisal
What does an appraiser do?
What are the reasons I would request a real estate appraisal?
What is the difference between an appraisal and a home inspection?
Is an appraisal the same as a comparative market analysis(CMA)?
What are the contents of an appraisal report?
Once the report has been completed, what assurance is there that the value conclusion is accurate?
What are the requirements to be a certified appraiser?
Who engages the services of appraisers?
Where does an appraiser get the data used to estimate values in Los Angeles County or other areas?
What can a full appraisal do for me?
What exactly is PMI and how can I get rid of it?
Do you need anything from me in advance?
What does "Market Value" mean?
Who has rights to the appraisal report?
Are some home improvements more worthwhile than others?



Describe an appraisal   (List of questions)

The process of creating an appraisal deals with an estimation which forms an opinion of value. The real estate appraiser will use a several "approaches," typically three, to conclude the estimation of market value. One of the methods in use is the Cost Approach, which finds what it would cost to replace the improvements to the property, minus depreciation and physical deterioration, plus the land value. The most common approach in finding the value of a house is the Sales Comparison Approach which deals with concluding a comparison to comparable houses close by. Usually, the Sales Comparison Approach is the most definite indicator of market value of a residential property. The Income Approach is generally used for finding the market value of income-producing properties based on what an investor would pay based on the amount of capital a property produce.

What does an appraiser do?   (List of questions)

An appraiser produces an unprejudiced and well substantiated assessment of market value, to be used in making real estate transactions. Appraisers demonstrate their investigation in appraisal reports.


What are the reasons I would request a real estate appraisal?   (List of questions)

There are many reasons to get an appraisal from John Lee Appraisal with the most common reason being real estate and mortgage transactions. Other reasons for obtaining an appraisal include:
  • To receive a loan.
  • To lower your tax burden.
  • To demonstrate a homeowner's acquired equity and remove insurance.
  • To challenge high property taxes.
  • To handle an estate.
  • To give you a negotiating tool when purchasing real estate.
  • To find a likely property value when selling your home.
  • To defend your rights if your property is being taken by means of eminent domain in a condemnation case.
  • Because an official agency such as the IRS requires it.
  • If you ever find yourself in a lawsuit.
If you need more information regarding the appraisal process, please click here.


What is the difference between an appraisal and a home inspection?   (List of questions)

Appraisers do not do provide house inspections and are not home inspectors. A third-party home inspector will inspect the structure of the house, from the top to the bottom. Usually, a home inspection report will discuss the amenities and the necessities of the property: air conditioning (weather permitting), electrical services, the condition of the heating system, the plumbing; then the structural integrity of the home such as the attic, exposed insulation, walls, floors, ceilings, windows, then the foundation, basement and visible structures.

Is an appraisal the same as a comparative market analysis(CMA)?   (List of questions)

Frankly, it's like comparing opera to country. The CMA uses market trends to conduct most of their business. An appraisal is based on comparable sales that can be proven by public record. The appraisal report will also contain location and building costs. The CMA will provide a non-specific figure. An appraisal delivers a defensible and carefully documented opinion of value.

The credentials of the person creating the report is frankly the most significant difference between a CMA and an appraisal. A CMA is created by a real estate agent who may or may not be trained in technical valuation concepts or even have a handle on market trends. The appraisal is produce by a licensed, certified professional who has made a career out of valuing properties. Moreover, the appraiser is an unbiased party, with no vested interest in the value of a home, unlike the agent, whose income is tied to the price of the home.

What are the contents of an appraisal report?   (List of questions)

The main objective of an appraisal document is to let the reader know the value of the real estate in question, and depending on the scope of the report, you'll usually see the following:
  • Who engaged the appraiser and other intended users.
  • How the appraisal is supposed to be used.
  • The reason for the assignment.
  • Precisely what "value" attribute is being reported and what that value means.
  • The effective date of the appraisal.(Sometimes this is in the past or maybe the future for new construction!)
  • Relevant property characteristics, including: location, physical characteristics, legal attributes, economic factors, the real property interest valued, and non-real estate items included in the valuation, such as personal property, permanent equipment installations and even intangible items.
  • Any known easements, restrictions, encumbrances, leases, reservations, covenants, contracts, declarations, special assessments, ordinances, and other items of a similar nature.
  • Division of interest, such as fractional interest, physical segment and partial holding.
  • What was included in the activity of completing the assignment.
For a more in depth view of the work that goes into an appraisal report click here: Sample Appraisal Report


Once the report has been completed, what assurance is there that the value conclusion is accurate?   (List of questions)

In the documentation of an appraisal, each appraiser must ensure the following:
  • That the information analysis implemented in the appraisal was proper.

  • That critical errors of omission or commission were not committed individually or collectively.

  • That appraisal services were not executed in a careless or negligent manner.

  • The final appraisal report was transparent, legitimate and conclusive.
To become a state licensed appraiser, there are strenuous education requirements as well as real world experience that must be logged - all with the objective of being able to render unbiased value opinions. In addition, appraisers must obey a stringent industry code of ethics and observe national standards of practice for real estate appraisal. The rules for working up an appraisal and reporting its results are insured by enforcement of the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP).


   (List of questions)

Licensing and certification requires classroom study, tests and experience working under a supervisor. Once an appraiser is licensed, he or she is required to take continuing education courses so that the license doesn't expire. To see the specific requirements for any state
click here.

Who engages the services of appraisers?   (List of questions)

Mortgage lenders are an appraiser's typical client, using their services to ensure real estate involved in a mortgage transaction is adequate collateral for a loan. Appraisers also provide opinions for legal settlements, tax matters and investment decisions.

Where does an appraiser get the data used to estimate values in Los Angeles County or other areas?   (List of questions)

Collecting data is one of the primary things an appraiser performs. Data can be categorized as either Specific or General. Specific data is from the home itself; Location, condition, amenities, size and other specific data are gathered by the appraiser while on site.

General data is collected from a numerous sources. To research recent sales to be used as "comps", an appraiser will typically go to the local Multiple Listing Service. Tax records and other public documents reveal actual sales prices in a market. Appraisers often have to report when a property is in a flood zone, and that information is retrieved from a FEMA data outlet such as a la mode's InterFlood product.

And last but not least, the appraiser assembles general data from his or her past experience in creating appraisals for other properties in the same market.


What can a full appraisal do for me?   (List of questions)

Any time the value of your home or other real property is being used to make a significant financial decision, an appraisal helps. If you're selling your home, an appraisal assists you in setting the most appropriate price. When buying, you can avoid overpaying by commissioning an independent appraisal. For people settling an estate or divorce, an appraisal from John Lee Appraisal is the best way to ensure assets are divided properly. Simply put, a home is often the single, largest financial asset anybody owns. Knowing its true value means you can make informed financial decisions.


What exactly is PMI and how can I get rid of it?   (List of questions)

PMI is the common abbreviation for for Private Mortgage Insurance. PMI takes care of the lender in the event a borrower defaults on the loan and the market price of the property is lower than what the borrower still owes on the loan. You can have your PMI dropped once you've achieved 20% equity in your home through appreciation and principal payments.

Is PMI a lineitem in your monthly mortgage payment?Call John Lee Appraisal today at (818)992-0990 or send us an e-mail. A new appraisal could save you thousands.

Do you need anything from me in advance?   (List of questions)

We begin with an inspection of the property. During this process, the appraiser will come to your home and measure it, determine the layout of the rooms inside, confirm all aspects of the home's general condition, and take several photos of your house for inclusion in the report. On the home's interior, pick up any clutter and make sure we can get to things like furnaces and water heaters. In the yard, trim any bushes so we can be free to get an accurate measurement of outside walls.

To help expedite our work plus ensure a more accurate report, attempt if possible to have the following items:
  • A plot plan or survey of the house and land (if available).
  • Title policy that lists encroachments or easements.
  • Any "Homeowners Associations" agreements or, if applicable, condo covenants or fees .
  • Locate copies of the current listing agreement, broker's data sheet and, if the sale is "pending", the purchase agreement.
  • A list of "proposed" improvements when the property is being appraised "as complete".

What does "Market Value" mean?   (List of questions)

In real estate appraising, Market Value (as opposed to Fair Market Value) is commonly defined as:

"The most probable price (in terms of money) which a property should bring in a competitive and open market under all conditions requisite to a fair sale, the buyer and seller each acting prudently and knowledgeably, and assuming the price is not affected by undue stimulus. Implicit in this definition is the consummation of a sale as of a specified date and the passing of title from seller to buyer under conditions whereby: the buyer and seller are typically motivated; both parties are well informed or well advised, and acting in what they consider their best interests; a reasonable time is allowed for exposure in the open market; payment is made in terms of cash in United States dollars or in terms of financial arrangements comparable thereto; and the price represents the normal consideration for the property sold unaffected by special or creative financing or sales concessions granted by anyone associated with the sale."



Who has rights to the appraisal report?   (List of questions)

For mortgage transactions, the lender orders the appraisal, either directly or through a third party. Even though it's the buyer that eventually pays for the report, the lender is the intended user. The buyer is entitled to a copy of the appraisal - it's usually included with all the other closing documents - but is not allowed to use the report for any other purpose without permission from the lender.

This rule doesn't apply when a home owner hires an appraiser directly. In these situations, the appraiser may stipulate the purpose of the appraisal; for PMI removal, or estate planning or tax challenges, for example. If not stipulated otherwise, the home owner can use the appraisal for any purpose.


Are some home improvements more worthwhile than others?   (List of questions)

The answer to this is different depending upon the location of the home. For example, adding a central air conditioner in to a home in the South may add significant value, while putting one in a home near the Pacific Northwest might not have much impact.

As a rule, the most value returned from renovating a home comes in the kitchen. According to one national survey, kitchen remodels returned an average of 88% of the investment. In other words, a $10,000 kitchen remodeling project would add approximately $8,800 to the value of the home. Bathrooms are right up there with kitchens, yielding 85%. Adding bedrooms and baths can also increase the value of your home (when done well) as long as your home doesn't then become overbuilt for your neighborhood in terms of size.