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Discrepancy Of Lot Size On Appraisal

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WorryWart

Freshman Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2017
Professional Status
General Public
State
Ohio
My husband and I are in in ,what we hope, is the final stages of purchasing a home. Just waiting on the cleared to close letter. Hopefully I'm just worrying over nothing but here's my concern: The home we are buying originally plotted with 1.94 acre, in 2015 the seller had it resurveyed to be only 1.24 acres but did not have it redeeded and stated in our contract that this would occur at closing. The lender was made aware of this from the beginning. When I called the tax assessor's office to verify school districts etc she verified the new dimensions of 1.24 acre however, the online tax portal for the house still shows it as 1.94 acres. I'm assuming this is since the deed has not been updated it's not public record yet? Anyway, the appraisal came in right at what we are contracted for and it was scrutinized pretty heavily to get that from my understanding (not sure if this was because we are using a VA backed mortgage). I got a copy of our appraisal in the mail last night and noticed that the valuation was based on the 1.94 acres not the 1.24 that we will actually be getting. My questions are this: is it ok that he used the Tax records for the appraisal and not the survey/plot lines? Is it ok that the acreage used for the appraisal don't match what we are actually getting when it comes to closing or does it have to be valued on the 1.24? Also I have no idea if the appraiser was supplied with the updated survey as I don't have a copy of this either (only a pic on my phone from when we originally viewed the house). I just don't want to get to the closing table and be hit with a brick if this is going to cause an issue. Thank you in advance for any advice.
 

Howard Klahr

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 4, 2004
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Florida
This would be a question best directed to your real estate agent and mortgage broker/loan representative. Best of luck in your pending transaction
 

JTip

Elite Member
Joined
Oct 12, 2004
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Pennsylvania
is it ok that he used the Tax records for the appraisal and not the survey/plot lines?

We call this the 'general course of business'. If the deed and assessment card show 1.94 acres, then I use that because it's what I have access to through professional business practices.

I am not privy to non-public, non-recorded information such as a privately secured survey. If I don't have it, well then, how could I know?

There are a dozes things that could have happened.....easements, reservations/exceptions, who knows.....call your agent TODAY, they work weekends too......
 

hastalavista

Elite Member
Joined
May 16, 2005
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
California
My questions are this: is it ok that he used the Tax records for the appraisal and not the survey/plot lines? Is it ok that the acreage used for the appraisal don't match what we are actually getting when it comes to closing or does it have to be valued on the 1.24? Also I have no idea if the appraiser was supplied with the updated survey as I don't have a copy of this either (only a pic on my phone from when we originally viewed the house). I just don't want to get to the closing table and be hit with a brick if this is going to cause an issue. Thank you in advance for any advice.

I can only address the appraisal portion of the question.
The appraisal relied on what was available at the time of its development. If the appraisal is factually in error regarding the site-size and this is brought to the attention of the appraiser, I would presume that the appraiser would correct the appraisal to reflect what actually exists. Would this affect the value? Maybe, maybe not. This issue should/would have been raised by the lender with the appraiser. If you are not aware of any issues prior to your closing, I'd be highly confident that when you sit at the signing table, this appraisal discrepancy will not be an issue.

Congrats on your new home!
 

leasedfee

Member
Joined
Oct 14, 2007
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Colorado
Now is the time to figure out what is going on. Once you close it is -- sorta -- too late, unless you want to lawyer-up. I'm less concerned about the appraisal side as Denis correctly notes it may or may not affect the value. As the buyer, I'd want to be certain to know what I'm buying or not buying, and where are my property lines. Tax records can be flawed: a typographical error (seen too many to count), rounding error, a computation error from calcs done two generations ago, failure to adjust for road takings, or account for a changed deed, etc. I've also caught two newly minted surveys that failed to close the boundaries: a major faux pas like a doctor not closing the surgery. One very embarrassed surveyor. A surveyor told me a story about a "desk surveyor" who was too lazy to go into the field circa 1950s and this created numerous errors in rapidly growing new suburban county, whereas Denver County's surveys from the 1880s are pretty much spot-on.

One way for you to check is to look at the legal descriptions in the prior deeds (call the title company), the assessor's legal/parcel map, your title commitment, and the current survey. Ideally they all have the same dimensions and bearings. You can find a "deed plotter" online to put in their dimensions and bearings.
 

miktay

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 3, 2007
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Texas
"The lender was made aware of this from the beginning."
It would have been helpful and time saving for the lender to point this info out to the appraiser in the beginning, to avoid future problems like this.

"My questions are this: is it ok that he used the Tax records for the appraisal and not the survey/plot lines?"
Yes. The appraiser had reason to believe that information to be true and correct.

"Is it ok that the acreage used for the appraisal don't match what we are actually getting when it comes to closing or does it have to be valued on the 1.24?"
No. The appraiser needs to be made aware (immediately) of the discrepancy so that the appraisal can be corrected and the true, actual lot size can be appraised.
 

Terrel L. Shields

Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
May 2, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Arkansas
In most small lots the size often doesn't matter. I doubt even a surveyor can simply look at a lot and tell the difference in 1.94 & 1.24 acres
 

gregb

Elite Member
Joined
Sep 3, 2011
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
California
In most small lots the size often doesn't matter. I doubt even a surveyor can simply look at a lot and tell the difference in 1.94 & 1.24 acres

In some parts, every square foot of land matters. :)
 

Terrel L. Shields

Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
May 2, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Arkansas
In some parts, every square foot of land matters.
In S. Califfy, prolly. Ohio? Hmm, I'd be surprised. Maybe if you have an oil well in your yard, Cincy maybe?

ohio_well close (Small).JPG IMGP2710 (Small).JPG
 

gregb

Elite Member
Joined
Sep 3, 2011
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
California
Some real McCoy vs Hatfield battles occur over a fence line or a tree blocking the ocean view.
 
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