I was asked a little while back to do a personal appraisal on a home. Our new customer was looking at the possibility of selling his home and had heard that I did great work from a neighbor who had also recently utilized our services. I was honored by the request and of course completed the appraisal to the best of my ability. I felt confident in my work and expected my customer to be happy as well. However, the angry phone call I got a few days later proved otherwise.
He was enraged because he thought that his home was worth more than the value I listed on the report. He was being very nitpicky about the report and talking about the price per square foot and how it was not comparable to the other comps I had used. At one point he told me that it seemed that he could have done a better job without my help. To give you the reader’s digest version, I was on the phone with him for forty-five minutes.
I am sure that you all have had similar experiences throughout your careers. But every time I have related experiences, I cannot help but wonder why anyone engages an appraiser if they are just going to argue about the value in the end. Now, I am fully aware that I make mistakes and if there is a mistake that I have made that causes an incorrect value to be reflected in the report, then I welcome that feedback and will get it fixed right away. But in this case, there was nothing incorrect in the report. He simply just did not like the value.
While I wish all of my customers would leave happy with their final product. My job, ultimately, is not to please people – it is to tell them the price that their home is most likely to sell at based on my data. He never had a complaint about my lack of professionalism or a lack of thoroughness in the appraisal. The truth is (and I told him this), no one is forcing him to list his home for the price that is listed on the appraisal. Just because my data indicates one number, does not mean that someone would not be willing to pay more for the home. I completed the job I was asked to do by telling him the value that was most accurate based on the data I had. Now, he gets to choose what he does with that information.
For more information on this subject, please download and listen to The Appraiser Coach Podcast Episode: 269 Tell Me Again Why You Hired An Appraiser?