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Profile picture for cpg4118

Appraisal based on forclosed comps??

We are trying to refinance our home to a much lower rate.  Everything was going great up until the appraisal.  We had the appraiser set up to come out to the house, and an hour and a half before time, I got a call from our mortgager stating he wasn't coming because he was having trouble finding comps to get us to the value we needed to refi.  It seems that of the very few houses in my area, the comps they were pulling were all forclosures, which dropped our value by $15,000!!!   How can my home's value be based solely on this?  Just doesn't make sense. 
  • August 01 2011 - Birmingham
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Answers (10)

 I got a call from our mortgager stating he wasn't coming because he was having trouble finding comps to get us to the value we needed to refi.

...and yes, I have done the same in the past - to save the borrower their $400 - if I see the comps will 'kill' the loan, even though by mandate an appraiser should not.

  • August 01 2011
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Profile picture for hpvanc
I know my post does not help the OP, but neither do "blame the messenger" type replies.  The best suggestion was from Wetdawgs on searching for other comps and if found attempt to challenge the appraisal.  Just keep in mind that they most likely need to be within 90 days and definitely need to be within 180 days.

Some agents and owners seem intent on blaming the messenger for the message, whether it is appraisers, loan underwriters, buyers, other agents or Zillow.
"Appraisals are hurting the value of properties in many areas."
  • August 01 2011
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Profile picture for sunnyview
In many markets, foreclosures and short sales are your comps. It sounds like the appraiser did you a favor by not doing a full appraisal that he knew that he could not support. The value of your house is worth only what the market is willing to pay and in this market that is whatever they can negotiate. Many people are in this same situation.

You might ask your lender about a different type of refi. If you qualify for HARP, I think they will allow you to refi up to 125% of your loan to value if you would benefit from a lower rate. You do not have to have a hardship. There is more information on that program here.
  • August 01 2011
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"Appraisals are hurting the value of properties in many areas. "

Really? I mean... seriously? 
Maybe we should outlaw them and everyone can just set their own value.
  • August 01 2011
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This is a very common problem - no 'good' comps in my area. But understand that comps ARE comps, whether good or bad. They are only BAD comps when it kills your loan.

A comp simply shows what homes are selling for in your area. Why foresclosured comps are used is because the lender wants to know what your home would sell for if they took it back if you stopped making payments on your mortgage. If the bank takes it back - and foresclosures - they would sell it at a 'foreclosured' price, correct ? Hence we use comps that are owned by banks as well as homes not owned by banks, or standard sales.

  • August 01 2011
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Appraisals are hurting the value of properties in many areas.  If there are not enough regular sales then a foreclosure would have to be used.  It is a still a declining market in some areas.
  • August 01 2011
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Profile picture for wetdawgs
The Zillow search function allows you to look for homes that have sold.  They have the yellow icons.  

This video walks you through some details.

  • August 01 2011
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Profile picture for cpg4118
Honestly, there haven't really been that many homes for sale around me, which I know doesn't help either.  Is there a way I can look for homes that have sold, and not just the homes that are on the market? 
  • August 01 2011
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Profile picture for shapiroamg

In looking for comparable sold properties, an appraiser is looking for homes of similar style, size and age within a certain radius of your home. I can understand an appraiser not using a foreclosure if there is only one in the area. If there are several than it has to be addressed in the appraisal and that will affect value.  I wish I had better news for you regarding this.

  • August 01 2011
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Profile picture for wetdawgs
Are there any (sufficient) recent sold properties in the area that you know about that aren't foreclosures?   A lot of foreclosures in the area do indeed pull down property prices, but sometimes you can find sufficient recent sales to justify an appraisal price that will support refinancing.
  • August 01 2011
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