1. Welcome to AppraisersForum.com, the premiere online community for the discussion of real estate appraisal. Register a free account to be able to post and unlock additional forums and features.

Insulation

Discussion in 'FHA/HUD and VA' started by Mike Seward, Jan 27, 2002.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Mike Seward

    Mike Seward Senior Member

    1
    Jan 23, 2002
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    Florida
    I doing an FHA appraisal on a 12 year old house, I marked "unknown" in the insulation section.
    The underwriter said that was unacceptable and that I must put down what the insulation was in each part of the house.
    If the underwriter is correct, how would I be able to determine that?
    Thanks,
    Mike in Tampa
     
  2. Pamela Crowley (Florida)

    Pamela Crowley (Florida) Elite Member

    3
    Jan 13, 2002
    Professional Status:
    Retired Appraiser
    State:
    Florida
    You have to at least look in the attic if it's at all accessable. If there is a scuttle or drop stairs, it's relatively easy. If you cannot access the attic, you'll need to state that with the reason. Same with the crawl space if it's not on a slab. Make sure the crawl space has at least 18 x 24 inches opening and is at least 18 in height. Take a picture and if there is insulation, just state that it appears adequate (if it does) and that you are not qualified to determine the R Factor.

    The walls are a different story and the underwriter is wrong about that part of the house. Just write that you cannot determine the wall insulation without tearing out a wall. A qualified contractor would be necessary to do this and to make the repairs caused by the verification process.

    Make sure you start your addendum with: On January 25, 2002 the underwiter requested .........

    Be very specific regarding the request. This makes the pain of writing it up more FUN! :twisted:

    From now on, after you verify the insulation in the attic and if you truly believe there is insulation in the walls, just put in *Adeq and in that nice larger blank field at the bottom of the insulation section put in *R Factor Unknown. If there is a crawl space, put *Adeq in the 'floor' field and if it's on a slab, put in N/A.

    It's all in explaining yourself. They don't like Unknown, especially in the insulation area on an FHA and it's doubly bad if the underwriter is a yankee. :lol:

    Oh, wait a minute..... I'm a dam* yankee caused I stayed in Florida instead of just visiting! 8O
     
  3. John Marshall

    John Marshall Member

    0
    Jan 15, 2002
    Professional Status:
    Certified General Appraiser
    State:
    Georgia
    Careful with that "Yankee" stuff :p For wall insulation, just take off a light or outlet cover & see if any insulation is around it. That at least tells you there is some or none.
    John (a former proud Yankee) from Atlanta
     
  4. bradellis

    bradellis Member

    0
    Jan 16, 2002
    Folks,

    Go back to the program and underline, "readily observable".

    You ARE supposed to gain access to the attic and crawl absent unusual circumstances that would prevent same. No- not having a ladder with you is not an acceptable excuse.

    As to insulation in the walls, it can be there but not be observable even if you take off a switch cover.

    If you belive it to be there but you cannot see it, note this and use "concealed" or abbreviate it as "Cncld.", or some other abbreviation.

    Note in your FHA appraisal that is was not redily observable and that you do not do invasive procedures to determine this.

    Brad
     
  5. Farm Gal

    Farm Gal Elite Member

    0
    Jan 14, 2002
    Professional Status:
    Licensed Appraiser
    State:
    Nebraska
    I also use the 'Cncld' abbreviation next to the 'walls' and 'floor'(as in finished basement areas) when unable to observe directly, I also use 'assumed average for age' in the last two pews of the subject insualtion data area.

    Take a picture or two of the attic, and one or two of the crawl if any, to PROVE that you did in fact 'inspect' as per FHA requirements.

    I ahve never had a lender or HUD question the above!
     
  6. Joe Birrell (NY)

    Joe Birrell (NY) Member

    0
    Jan 16, 2002
    I agree with comments of Lee Ann and Bradellis, "readily observable" is the key, plus I have never had a UW question me on this. You probably have a newbie UW that hasn't been trained (so what's new), the only "training" they have received is to "ask at least one question per report".
     
  7. Brad Pack

    Brad Pack Junior Member

    0
    Jan 15, 2002
    Professional Status:
    General Public
    State:
    California
    To all,

    The word "unknown" can and is to be used when applicable. If the R-factor is unobtainable, enter the depth of the insulation (e.g. 6"). Do NOT guess or assume as to the wall insulation!

    Brad Pack

    The following is from the 4150.2 (Protocal):

    Insulation
    If access is available, the appraiser must inspect the
    following components and note the observations. Note all
    irregularities in the type or presence of insulation in the
    Comments section .

    Field Protocol

    Roof o Make every effort to determine if insulation is
    present and the type. Enter R-factor or show
    depth and site. If the type cannot be
    determined, enter "Unknown". Do not guess.
    o Comment whether the insulation is (G)ood,
    (A)verage, (F)air, (P)oor or (U)ndetermined.
    Ceiling o Make every effort to determine the type. Enter
    R-factor or show depth and site. If the type
    cannot be determined, enter "Unknown". Do not
    guess.
    o Comment whether the insulation is (G)ood,
    (A)verage, (F)air, (P)oor or (U)ndetermined.
    Walls o Make every effort to determine the type. Enter
    R-factor or show depth and
    site. If the type cannot be determined, enter
    "Unknown". Do not
    guess.
    o Comment whether the insulation is (G)ood,
    (A)verage, (F)air, (P)oor or
    (U)ndetermined.
    Floor o Make every effort to determine the type. Enter
    R-factor or show depth and
    site. If the type cannot be determined, enter
    "Unknown". Do not
    guess.
    o Comment whether the insulation is (G)ood,
    (A)verage, (F)air, (P)oor or (U)ndetermined.
    None o Check this line if there is no insulation
    anywhere in the house.
    Unknown o Check this line if unable to determine the
    presence of insulation.
     
  8. Brad Pack

    Brad Pack Junior Member

    0
    Jan 15, 2002
    Professional Status:
    General Public
    State:
    California
    Correction: Protocol not Protocal.
     
  9. Farm Gal

    Farm Gal Elite Member

    0
    Jan 14, 2002
    Professional Status:
    Licensed Appraiser
    State:
    Nebraska
    edited later for clarity: I was talking ONLY about those areas where one cannot inspect: walls cathedral ceilings etc... YES OF COURSE YOU MUST INSPECT ATTICS AND CRAWLS WHERE YOU CAN
    After running through the book: I think I AM doing this 100%correctly and refuse to lose any sleep!
    regards All
    -------------------------

    Thanks Brad!
    :oops: Guess I had better whip that 4150.2 back out and reread that section! :oops: I had started using that 'Assumed average' comment on my Conventional reports and it slid over to the FHA...

    How bout I use 'concld' on all the applicable lines and check the 'Unknown' instead of useing the ASSumed? Personally, I think this provides for greater clarity....
     
  10. Mike Garrett RAA

    Mike Garrett RAA Elite Member

    15
    Jan 14, 2002
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    Colorado
    Check with your manual, it is ALWAYS the final word. The underwriter is correct in that Unknown is not acceptable. Typically an appraiser should look in the attic to determine there is insulation. If you can, measure the depth of the stuff. You can either report the depth or convert to R Factor. Marshall and Swift has a good reference, mine is pretty old (page D-10 1991 book) but still reliable.

    R-13 is one 2 -5/8th batt or blanket
    R-19 is one 6 -1/2th batt or blanket
    R-30 is one 6 -1/2th bath and one 3-1/2 batt

    Walls are typically R-11 which is 3 -1/2 in fiberglass batt and 1 " sheathing
    R-19 is 3 -5/8th + 1" sheathing. or could be 6 - 1/2 batt

    The chart also will tell you what zone you are in...either mild, moderate, or extreme and what the requirement is for that zone. Ours is moderate so we need R-30 ceilings, R-19 walls, and R-19 floors to meet current code. Remember older homes will be grandfathered as to code.

    I teach this in my registered appraisers course for all appraiser wannabees. Amazing how many have no clue as to what is required.

    A final thought...I always use the following E R-19 (E = Estimated) which takes me off the hook just in case it isn't EXACTLY R-19.

    If you don't have Marshall and Swift, give me a call and I will fax you a copy of that page for reference.

    I wish you well.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page