There are a number of Internet services today that promise to provide the the homeowner with the value of their home. However, users of automatic valuation systems need to be aware of some of the things not accounted for in the analysis these systems provide. Automatic Valuation Models (AVMs) typically utilize comparables to base projected homeowner values. But herein lies the issue of accuracy and completeness: The identity of a qualified comparable encompasses a number of conditions which may include characteristics not identified by computer selected comparables based on square foot similarity alone. They include external property characteristics. These may include, but not limited to, the surrounding neighborhood, e.g., proximity of high tension lines or cell phone towers, the presence of railroad tracks, sewage treatment facilities, frontage to traffic arterials with speed allowances higher than is desirable in a fully residential area, the proximity of schools or business establishments, properties sold under duress or to a family member for special value consideration, or properties with local neighborhood properties in decline or not maintained properly. All of these conditions may require adjustments to the value of a homeowners property.
Additional modifying conditions may be the age of public assessment records utilized (Updated assessments may not reflect current value appreciation or decline conditions.) There may have been a recent spike or decline in neighborhood values which automatic valuation will not reflect. And longer term trending may not be reflected in the comparable sales utilized by the automatic valuation method.
And there is the question of online valuation utilization: Is the typical user of a particluar valuation service a real estate agent trying to establish a high sale price to obtain a listing? Thus there may be bias operating in the valuation.
All these conditions are what an experienced and trained residential appraiser will factor into a value conclusion for your property, as a truly comparable property requires subjective and qualified analysis that only a trained appraiser can identify. This will provide you with the most accurate and up-to-date appraisal value possible. For completeness and accuracy of home value analysis, we recommend utilizing a Certified Residential Appraiser at AMS Appraisals. AMS Appraisals provides a full range of appraisal services in Phoenix.