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How Your Home Is Appraised: An Interview with Sean Coffee of All Metro Atlanta Appraisal Co.

By Sean Coffee

Tell us a little bit about your company and the services you offer.

Name of the company is All Metro Atlanta Appraisal Company. It is a real estate appraisal company. Appraising all residential homes (single family & multi-family) and land in the metro Atlanta area and a few counties south of metro Atlanta. Based in Peachtree City, GA and in business since 2008.

In most cases, who typically orders a home appraisal?

Typically, most appraisal orders are placed by lenders. The lenders order an appraisal through a management company. The management company hires the appraiser.

What types of appraisals would a homeowner order?

A homeowner may place an appraisal order directly to get the market value of their home. Cases include listing the home for sale, property tax disputes, estate purposes, PMI removal, and market value disputes with a lender.

Can you outline the major steps in the appraisal process from start to finish?

When an order is placed, the appraiser gathers as much data as possible before the inspection to help in the inspection process. This includes subject property and neighborhood data. Next, is the inspection of the subject property. The appraiser will gather physical data such as the quality and condition, exterior and interior pictures, and a sketch.

Then, research is done to determine which approach to value is relevant. Income, cost, or the sale's comparison approach. The most common approach to value in residential real estate is the sale's comparison approach. This method uses comparable sales to estimate the subject property's market value. Comparable sales are chosen and adjustments are made off their sale's prices for specific differences from the subject property.

Last, the appraiser will reconcile the adjusted values of the comparables to determine the market value of the subject property.

When you're inspecting a house, what are the basic areas you cover and some of the main things you're looking for?

At an inspection, the appraiser is mostly observing the subject's interior and exterior quality and condition.

What does the inspection report include and when it is usually available?

An appraisal report includes neighborhood data, subject property data, comparable data, photos, a location map of the subject and the comparables, and an opinion of market value.

Is there anything that most homeowners or homebuyers don't understand about the appraisal process?

Most homeowners and homebuyers do not know that when an appraisal is ordered by a lender that they are not the client of the appraiser. The appraiser is not allowed to discuss value and cannot give a copy of the report to anyone but the client/lender. Even though the home owner/buyer paid for the appraisal report. The homeowner/buyer is the client of the lender and it is the lender's responsibility to provide a copy the appraisal report.

What's the best way for people to contact you and your company?

Sean Coffee
Cell: 770-595-1161

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