Enron has created a “Witch Hunt” mentality and the media smells blood. Five will get you ten the appraisal professional will come under review. How many more Enron’s are out there is the mantra? Lets get’um! Accounting schemes is the name of the game, and the accounting business is due for a bashing. Examples: As we speak, I have 15 appraisals for an estate. I meet the executor at 1PM to start inspecting the properties. The executor told me that his CPA told him to get the highest appraisals possible to save on taxes.
I refuse to do business appraisals. Why? There are five accepted accounting methods that can lead to as much as a 100% difference in reported net operating income. I did an appraisal about two months ago on a convenience market that was under contract of purchase at $1,050,000. The seller gave me a copy of her accounting statement for the last three years. The net operating income for the three years averaged $22,000. That is a cap rate of about 2%. She said she was making a killing! She had a profit from the sale of lotto tickets alone of $90,000 per year net. I just appraised the real estate component of the enterprise. My theory is that most businesses are worth the physicals assets with few exceptions; Buildings, land, fixtures, inventory. In a few cases other assets like franchise value. Every time I get involved with a CPA it is some scam setup like a corporation leases the real estate to a partnership at double market rent or some such Rube Goldberg setup. Most recent was a big drugstore superstore. One just went belly up and another chain purchased the building and closed five smaller shopping center stores. When this store was being built a banker called me up asking my opinion of what was going on. I just ignore it and estimate my own market rent. When you get involved with this kind of crap you don’t know what is going on.
Austin, Glad to see that I am not the only one with this problem. I am almost to the point of just "Saying No!!!" to commercial appraisals. It is really not worth the time and trouble that goes with doing one. And the owner & banker are never happy with the true value of the real property. Little things that aren't included such as the fuel tanks & pumps (They usually belong t the fuel supplier, walk-in coolers, display racks, ane it goes on from there (usually down hill).
I left out the best part in my above posts. The reason that the accounts have created such a mess is due to the US Tax Code. Basically, they are taking advantage of the tax code, which in other words means, the problem is the US Congress that wrote the tax code.
As far as commercial appraising: Every convenience market that has been sold in this market in recent years was sold by a private owner to the gasoline supply company that owned the pump & tanks, and supplied the gasoline. This indicates that they are buying based on gas sales volume and how would an appraiser ever know what their profit margin in the gasoline is? Sometimes the only way to appraise them is to take a picture of the comps, line the pictures up on the desk with the sale price on each comp, and see how the subject fits into the line up. Kind of like working a puzzle. It is bad enough as is, but throw in USPAP and it is a pain in the ***.
The older I get the more I charge by the hour. It is the only way to go.
However, I wish I would have known they were going to be here (Phila.) and I could have given them the SUPREME tour with some "momentoes" to take with. However, like I said on another post, I'm saving those reports for my book OR Ripley's museum. Highlighted a homeowner here and one in Chicago. Woman bought a new front door for ...$35,000. Guy in Chicago bought new windows for ... $114,000. What was NOT touched on was that an "appraiser" probably valued the Philadelphia house for $65,000 (makes it look like a WELL secured loan). I'm going to check it out being the amateur sleuth that I am (it's an EASY one) - gave the woman's last name (maybe real, maybe not but I may be able to back into it even if it was fake). :idea: