Thursday, April 11, 2013

Agents, add appraisal clause to your contracts, Mary Cummins

Attention real estate agents. Please, add an appraisal clause to your offers, contracts. Here's a sample, "If the appraised value is $10,000 less than the contract price, buyer will make up the difference in cash. If the appraised value is more than $10,000 less than the contract price, buyer has option to make up the difference in cash or cancel contract for full return of deposit." You can also state that if the appraised value is less than contract price, you can just walk with your deposit. I'm talking about the appraisal value for homes selling for cash with appraisal clauses or homes selling with loans that need appraisals.

AMCs and banks are giving us strict orders on comparables we can use and adjustments we can make. For an average home we must use comps +/- 15% difference in gross living area, within one mile radius, sold within the last 12 months and currently listed. I don't want to see anyone lose their deposit. Properties in my area are selling over list with multiple offers because there are so few good properties currently listed. Getting them to appraise is difficult. There are fewer listings which mean fewer sales which can be used as comparables. In general most of the inventory needs work. It's difficult to appraiser a home in great condition if all other sales were distressed sales that need complete renovations. We can make the adjustments but still need to bracket the sales price which can be tough.

Search the internet for other appraisal clauses. I am not an attorney. Talk to an attorney about any sales contract or offers.

Mary Cummins of Animal Advocates is a wildlife rehabilitator licensed by the California Department of Fish and Game. Mary Cummins is also a licensed real estate appraiser in Los Angeles, California.

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