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Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is a divorce appraisal?

    A divorce appraisal is an assessment of the value of marital property, typically real estate, conducted during divorce proceedings to help determine a fair division of assets.

  • Why is a divorce appraisal necessary?

    It is necessary to establish the value of assets accurately so that they can be equitably divided between spouses during divorce.

  • Who typically orders a divorce appraisal?

    Either or both spouses, their attorneys, or the court may order a divorce appraisal.

  • What types of property are commonly appraised in a divorce?

    Real estate properties such as the marital home, vacation homes, and investment properties are often appraised. Personal property like jewelry and art may also be appraised by a personal property appraiser.

  • What factors do appraisers consider when determining property value?

    Appraisers consider factors like the property’s condition, location, recent sales of comparable properties, and any unique features or issues.

  • Can either spouse dispute the appraisal results?

    Yes, either spouse can dispute the results if they believe the appraisal is inaccurate. They can provide evidence and have a second appraisal if necessary.

  • What happens if the spouses can't agree on the appraised value?

    If there’s a significant disagreement, the court may review the appraisals and make a final determination.

  • Do appraisers testify in court during divorce proceedings?

    Yes, appraisers may testify in court to explain their valuation methods and defend their appraisal if there are disputes. Testifying as a professional witness requires an additional provision in the service agreement.

  • Can appraisals be used to determine spousal support or alimony?

    Yes, in some cases, the value of assets determined through appraisals may influence spousal support or alimony decisions.

  • What is a pre-listing appraisal?

    A pre-listing or current listing appraisal is an appraisal of a property conducted before it is listed for sale, typically by the seller or their real estate agent.

  • Why would I consider getting a pre-listing appraisal?

    A pre-listing appraisal helps sellers determine an accurate market value for their property, set a competitive listing price, and potentially streamline the sales process.

  • What does a pre-listing appraisal involve?

    It involves a licensed appraiser assessing the property’s condition, features, and comparable sales in the area to determine its current market value.

  • Can a pre-listing appraisal help me set a more accurate listing price?

    Yes, it can provide you with a realistic and competitive listing price, which may attract more potential buyers.

  • Can I use the pre-listing appraisal for negotiating with potential buyers?

    Yes, you can use it as a valuable tool during negotiations to justify your asking price to potential buyers.

  • What if the pre-listing appraisal comes in lower than expected?

    If the appraisal suggests a lower value than anticipated, you can adjust your listing price accordingly or make improvements to the property to increase its value, although caution is recommended when making improvements due to the cost being more than the return in most cases.

  • Can a pre-listing appraisal help avoid delays in the selling process?

    Yes, by providing an accurate value upfront, can reduce the likelihood of appraisal-related delays during the sales process. A pre-listing appraisal will also provide the owner with accurate square footage that adheres to today’s mortgage standards when a personal visit by the appraiser is required.

  • Do real estate agents recommend pre-listing appraisals?

    Some real estate agents may recommend pre-listing appraisals to their clients, as it can help sell properties faster and with fewer complications.

  • Is a pre-listing appraisal necessary for every property sale?

    It’s not necessary for every sale, but it can be particularly beneficial in markets with uncertainty or when you want to maximize your selling price while minimizing the time your property spends on the market. The market is always changing and appraisers are trained to analyze these changes without bias and report their findings. Realtors, can on occasion, make unintentional unsupported conclusions about a market. They can lead to complications with your sell.