An appraisal is a professional appraiser's opinion of value. The preparation of an appraisal involves: (i) research into appropriate market areas; (ii) the assembly and analysis of information pertinent to a property; and (iii) the knowledge, experience, and professional judgment of the appraiser.
Appraisals may be required for any type of property, including single-family homes, apartment buildings and condominiums, office buildings, shopping centers, industrial sites, and farms. The reasons for performing a real property appraisal are just as varied. They are usually required whenever real property is sold, mortgaged, taxed, insured, or developed. For example, appraisals are prepared for:
• Mortgage lending purposes
• Tax assessments and appeals of assessments
• Negotiation between buyers and sellers
• Government acquisition of private property for public use
• Business mergers or dissolutions
• Lease negotiations
Source: Appraisal Institute. The Dictionary of Real Estate Appraisal. 5th ed. Chicago, IL: Appraisal Institute, 2010. Print.