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The Permit Police Strikes Again!

Discussion in 'General Appraisal Discussion' started by David Wimpelberg, Oct 29, 2009.

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  1. David Wimpelberg

    David Wimpelberg Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    46
    Mar 30, 2005
    Professional Status:
    Certified General Appraiser
    State:
    New York
    I'm working on a major project for and estate taxation purposes. The estate has all sorts of oddball properties.

    One parcel is odd shaped, the majority of which is environmentally sensitive. A portion, however, is cleared, level, has a lawn, and is outside of the environmentally sensitive areas. The setback areas overlap, which means it isn't buildable without having relief granted from the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA). I was told that the property wasn't buildable.

    So, as part of my normal course of business, I research the documents for the property. Lo and behold, a variance has been granted by the ZBA, allowing setback relief and allowing a home and in-ground pool (common amenity) to be constructed on the property. A follow-up call to someone in the know at the ZBA confirms that the variance runs with the land.

    Had I not been the permit police, my value conclusion would have been 25% or less of the actual fair market value.
     
  2. hglenbetts

    hglenbetts Senior Member

    2
    Dec 3, 2007
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    Michigan
    Good work is it's own reward..

    In my neck of the woods, the ZBA recommends to the Village Council, who gives a variance for setbacks, etc, but they also have a drop dead date if not acted on. I'm sure something like that varies from Municipality to Municipality.:nono:
     
  3. David Wimpelberg

    David Wimpelberg Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    46
    Mar 30, 2005
    Professional Status:
    Certified General Appraiser
    State:
    New York
    That's exactly why I asked that very question to my buddy on the ZBA.:D

    Some variances are specifically conditioned, such as with an expiration date; this one is not.
     
  4. Denis DeSaix

    Denis DeSaix Elite Member

    170
    May 16, 2005
    Professional Status:
    Certified General Appraiser
    State:
    California
    I am not the permit police.
    Nonetheless, I had to make three stops at three different jurisdictions (one county and two city planning/building departments) to understand certain issues involved in two assignments I am working on.

    Some jobs warrant investigation by the appraiser of permits in order to complete the assignment and some don't.
    In those cases where it is warranted, I've either included it in my fee or eat the difference if I didn't.
    In those cases where it is not warranted, I'm happy to provide the service at a reasonable fee. :)
     
  5. Terrel L. Shields

    Terrel L. Shields Elite Member
    Gold Supporting Member

    300
    May 2, 2002
    Professional Status:
    Certified General Appraiser
    State:
    Arkansas
    anything of an environmental nature needs some vetting or very good caveats...
     
  6. John Hassler

    John Hassler Senior Member

    0
    Jul 23, 2002
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    California
    I'm writing up a similar narrative land report right now for an estate. Frontage on SF Bay. Lot was split front/back instead of side-by-side. With a little digging at the county I found the Grant of Adjustment for revised lot shape done in 1960 and formal land division approval in 1975 allowing residential development. Interesting work and nice appraisal fee too - third 4-digit one this month.

    There is a whole other side of appraising besides dealing status update calls, 24-48 hour TATs, cut-and-pasting MLS pictures, and low fees.
     
  7. Mike Kennedy

    Mike Kennedy Elite Member

    79
    Sep 28, 2003
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    New York
    There isa whole other side of appraising besides dealing status update calls, 24-48 hour TATs, cut-and-pasting MLS pictures, and low fees.

    You bet.
     
  8. Non Sequitur

    Non Sequitur Elite Member
    Supporting Member

    113
    Feb 14, 2002
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    Louisiana
    Yes. It's so funny when posters complain that they get no respect and are considered skippies for writing multiple reports per day....but their online data is soooooo good, they live in a metro area and at one time or another, over the years, they have driven by the comp so the MLS photo is better than an original.
     
  9. David Wimpelberg

    David Wimpelberg Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    46
    Mar 30, 2005
    Professional Status:
    Certified General Appraiser
    State:
    New York
    Some assignments specifically require it. For example, I just accepted two assignments from a municipality. These are self-contained appraisal reports that require examination of all factors affecting the property: any permits (open or pending), variances, environmental conditions, zoning requirements, sanitary flow requirements, etc.
     
  10. jay trotta

    jay trotta Elite Member

    13
    Feb 8, 2004
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    Connecticut
    The most valuable end of our business (IMO) is in "land Requirements", what can and cannot be done. There were certain periods of time in which "sub divisions" had a Life Expectency and now those approvals "run with the land" unless there are specifics. The "kicker" is the local "Health District" and their requirements.
    In some instances, the State or Local Health Depts. add new regulations based in part on compliance with new regulations. In those instances, it may be required of any "pre-approval" status, that the pre-existing approvals may require "updates & conformity" to those new regulations.

    It is the most interesting aspect of the work we do and also warrants more $$$$$ per report, but also carries more responsibility/liability for accuracy. Sensitive area's in my neighborhood are currently going under new scrutiny in regards to "water shed area's" and new compliance regs. in regards to septic systems. The next few years will be most interesting with all the new young pups in the business; the wisdom of years will most definitely be an advantage.

    cheers
     
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