About Us
International Real Estate situation
Thai Real Estate Situation
Costs of Constructions
Contact Us

Current Trends in USA Appraisal Preparation

VAT News Vol.4/2000

James B. Price, MAI, SR/WA
International Right of Way Association Valuation Committee <agnw@ix.netcom.com>

Appraisal practices are undergoing sub-stantial modernization and technological upgrading in the United States and will increasingly continue to do so for the foreseeable future. Almost all appraisers in major metropolitan areas have ready access to comparable sales through internet services that obtain and confirm sales that can be easily researched. These services provide photographs of the sale buildings, site maps, and location maps. The appraiser must still verify the sale with a party to the transaction. The internet data services charge either a monthly fee to provide this information or charge for each sale that the appraiser obtains. Other internet services provide, or will soon, local tax information, zoning, and GIS (geographic information systems) data.
        The Appraisal Institute, which designates MAI and SRA appraisers, is also in the process of preparing a comparable sale database based upon information that would be provided by appraisers who have actually inspected or appraised the property.
        In summer of 1998, during my second vacation to Thailand, my observa-tion of the depressed Thai real estate industry reminded me of my own appraisal experiences in the State of Alaska after a severe recession that was caused by depressed crude oil prices (quite a contrast to the oil market of today). The real estate appraisers were faced with a dilemma of valuing properties at substantially lower valuations than the cost to construct. Sales of real estate were limited and often involved unusual sale conditions. Many appraisers used an alternate valuation technique that involved, first, valuing the property under normal market circumstances and, second, estimating the time period for the market to recover discounting the value for the number of years during which the property
would rent for a lower rate of return.
        The Seattle area, where I live, is undergoing an intensive period of public works projects, similar to what I saw in Bangkok during my last visit. Many appraisers in the USA, Canada, and a number of other countries rely on courses and seminars presented by the International Right of Way Association that provide technical assistance. Appraisers have to be current in methods of appraising property to be acquired for public purposes, partial acquisitions, or easements used for such purposes as access, utilities, or aviation. In the Metropolitan Seattle area we are adding a third runway to Sea-Tac International Airport, acquiring rights of way for a new transit system, and improving freeways and roads to meet high traffic loads for our
increasing population. These projects, in addition to a strong high technology economy, have created a strong demand for professional appraisers.
        The USA established an Appraisal Foundation in 1987 that has set standards and practices for real estate appraisers throughout the country. This standardization was needed to retain public trust in the quality of appraisals and maintain high professional and ethical standards. Ongoing credit for courses that update professional skills is required by individual states periodically. Many changes are occurring in American appraisal practices both from a technological and professional practices viewpoint. We find that our professional associations are critical in meeting the challenges that we face today.

@area 5/15, Nonsi Road, Chongnonsi, Yannawa, Bangkok 10120
Tel: 66-2295-3171 Fax: 66-2295-1154 Email: info@thaiappraisal.org  VISIT US: Location Map