If you’ve been a part of the appraisal world for long, you’ve had this experience. You’ve just submitted a completed report that you feel pretty good about. Soon afterward, however, you are contacted by an underwriter requesting that you look at some additional “comps” for use in your report. What do you do?
Let’s briefly make a distinction between a sale and a comparable. However well-intentioned these people may be, most of them don’t really know what it means for a property to be considered a comp. They may send you several sales in the area of properties they think are comparable, but for whatever reason, really aren’t comparable to the property you’ve just appraised.
If a property isn’t comparable, don’t include it in your report as a comparable. It is, after all, the appraiser that determines the scope of work. I do, however, sometimes like to include a paragraph or two about the property they sent me, saying something along the lines of, “The client requested that I include the property at this address, and here are the reasons why I do not feel it is comparable.” It’s important that you stick to your principles here. Even including a property in your report as a comparable and then listing the places it may not compare creates a confusing dichotomy that is best avoided, if possible. In short, do your work the way you feel good about. There’s no harm in including another property in your report if it really is comparable; but don’t feel pressured to include something you don’t feel right about.
For more information on this subject, please download and listen to The Appraiser Coach Podcast Episode: