I received an appraisal request from a local attorney, and I was recommended by the judge in this case because I have testified before her numerous times. After reading the particulars of this property, I believe that it will be almost impossible, and maybe completely impossible to perform a "market value" valuation. I am looking for any and all feedback from you guys before I respond to the attorney. I am 99.999% sure I am not going to accept this assignment, unless you guys can educate me that my thinking is incorrect, AND I get a gigantic fee. The facts: 1) property is a frame/pier structure which was purchased and moved onto a third party's land, then extensively remodelled. Also, they made some site improvements on the other party's land, such as a barn, horse arena and fencing. Just to make it clear - they do not own the land that these improvements sit on. 2) Now they are getting a divorce, and one party apparently has a "market value" appraisal, which I have not seen (by choice). The attorney states that the sales analyzed in this appraisal are properties with land and the appraisal includes a land value !?!?!! 3) The attorney wants a "market value" appraisal. 4) Research in my local MLS (going back to the beginning of time) shows a total of 4 sales of houses to be moved. Three of these transactions took place from 1989-1991, and one in 1999. However MLS data does not contain information regarding the condition or photos or vendor/vendee of any of these sales, and the Realtors don't even remember them. To my knowledge, there is no other central place to locate sales of this type, although maybe house movers might be able to point me toward some sales. My thoughts about this assignment: 1) Just to state the obvious, you can't just deduct a site value from similar sales to obtain market value. You would need verified transactions of arm's length sales of properties which were sold "to be moved." 2) The house is not real estate, it is chattel, since it is not legally tied to its own parcel of land. 3) Same thing with the site improvements (barn, lighting, fencing, arena). There may be some salvage value to these, but I've got no idea how to arrive at that number. Or they may have some value to the property owner. But in my mind, only having one potential purchaser screws up the whole idea of market value. Question: can you derive a market value is there if only one potential purchaser?? 4) I suppose I could do a depreciated cost approach, but that ain't market value. OK - go!