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Can you use SFH as a comp for a Twin?

JEISENMANN

Thread Starter
Freshman Member
Joined
Jul 11, 2019
Professional Status
General Public
State
Pennsylvania
Hello.

My husband and I purchased one side of a twin. Its in a historic neighborhood in a good school district but there are no sales that I would consider "comparable" besides SFHs. The recent twin sales are circa 1950-1970 construction, brick, 3 bedroom, 1.5 bath homes (1100 sq ft on 2000 sq ft lots) that are what I would call row-home style. These recent sales are also on the wrong side of the tracks, so to speak, compared to our property. Our property is a 90-year old historic Victorian-style home (it used to be one large bed and breakfast that was converted to a twin decades ago). It's 3 stories, 5 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, 1800 sq ft on a 7500 sq ft lot and completely updated. Based solely on its location in this historic district and the Victorian-style of the home, I don't consider it comparable to the brick row-homes...but how would an appraiser consider it?

There are plenty of recent sales on 5 bedroom, 2.5 bath Victorian homes in this historic district, but they are all single family homes.

I'd appreciate any opinions on the subject and whether or not there is anything I should do in advance of the appraisal (if anything). We purchased the house with cash, renovated it and will be acquiring financing on it in the near future. We will either use it as a rental or possibly sell it, if the price is right.

Thanks,
Jen
 

Joe Flacco

Elite Member
Joined
Jul 31, 2013
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Maryland
Sometimes the best comps are not recent. In the scenario you describe, I would first look for a Victorian that was split similar to yours and then go from there. I don't know when you purchased your property but if it was purchased in the last few years, that may be one of the better indicators of value.
 

Mike Kennedy

Elite Member
Joined
Sep 28, 2003
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
New York
Hello from the Historic Hudson Valley NY - "There are plenty of recent sales on 5 bedroom, 2.5 bath Victorian homes in this historic district, but they are all single family homes. " most probably indicates the Current Highest and Best Use of your Victorian is as a Single Family Dwelling.

In this neck o' the woods, similar vintage properties go thru "life cycles" beginning as single family - over time (and depressions and recessions and/or lack of heirs or other family members who want the property) - often times they are purchased by investor owners who divide the large dwellings into 2-4 or 5-6 rental units. Over time......markets change. It is not uncommon for similar properties to be converted, and reconverted several times during their usable economic lives (depending on $$$ spent to restore them to prior beauty. Strongly recommend seeking out a reliable local Appraiser with specific long term expertise in valuation of similar properties. Ask for professional references before contracting the appraisal assignment - and ........CHECK THEM.

P.S. suggest posting the property location (not address) - you may very well find experienced professionals here on AForum in YOUR market who are up to the Task and willing to assist you.
 

Lee in L.A.

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 24, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
California
Can you use SFH as a comp for a Twin?

Maybe, but I don't think it will fly with Fannie etc.
Maybe, but only under duress, aka you have NO other comps.

Still the appraiser would need to dig deep for info and support.
Look at historic sales of things like yours, attached etc. I don't care much how old the sales are.

If you are just trying to price it for sale, you don't need to worry about all that.
Price it same as he detached ones and see how it goes.
Be prepared to reduce the price if need. :shrug:
 

Joe Flacco

Elite Member
Joined
Jul 31, 2013
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Maryland
There is no issue with using detached improvements as comps for attached improvements or vice versa when you are dealing with unique properties. If that's the best you got then that is the best you got. The things that matter a lot in the historic districts I cover are things like fascade, authenticity, the block or street it is located on, parking, size of the lot. Stuff like that.
 

sputnam

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 24, 2012
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
North Carolina
You can... but, I wouldn't unless that's all that was available.
 
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