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"does Hole In Basement Wall" Create Any Foundation Issues?"-underwriter

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Gulf Coast

Sophomore Member
Joined
Feb 4, 2013
Professional Status
Appraiser Trainee
State
Florida
I was asked this question by an underwriter after a basement photo showed where a hole between the foundation of existing house and an addition was made to access the crawl space under the addition. I basically just said commenting on foundation "issues" is beyond the scope of an appraisal and my license. What do you folks usually say?
 

Randolph Kinney

Elite Member
Joined
Apr 7, 2005
Professional Status
Retired Appraiser
State
North Carolina
I would note it with the caveat that if there are concerns, a qualified expert should be consulted.

How big is the hole? Who made it, owner? If it is large enough, call for an inspection subject to EA.
 

residentialguy

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Mar 24, 2009
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Minnesota
basement+amityville.jpg
 

Red Flint

Member
Joined
May 15, 2005
Professional Status
General Public
State
Michigan
I would not even use the word ‘issue’ as there may be no concern, and you are not qualified to even determine if there is a problem.

Good idea to cover yourself, and if annoyed by your client, suggest that there may be a need for a below grade Under Righter tool.
 

Meandering

Elite Member
Joined
Feb 26, 2006
Professional Status
Real Estate Agent or Broker
State
Pennsylvania
While you were inspecting the "hole" did you happen to look up and see if there was a steel I beam supporting the floor above the "hole"?

That's how they commonly attach additions here.

.
 

Terrel L. Shields

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May 2, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Arkansas
after a basement photo showed where a hole between the foundation of existing house and an addition was made to access the crawl space
This is normally done when an addition is made to a house. You need access.
 

Gulf Coast

Sophomore Member
Joined
Feb 4, 2013
Professional Status
Appraiser Trainee
State
Florida
I wonder why they ask those types of questions though. Are they hoping you say "no issue" so that you have the liablity down the road? Whenever I say I'm not qualified to make that determination and to contact contractor, etc, they don't ask any more questions and let it go. Not sure what the point of it all is...
 

hastalavista

Elite Member
Joined
May 16, 2005
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
California
I wonder why they ask those types of questions though. Are they hoping you say "no issue" so that you have the liablity down the road? Whenever I say I'm not qualified to make that determination and to contact contractor, etc, they don't ask any more questions and let it go. Not sure what the point of it all is...

The point of it is, since you (or any other appraiser) is the client/lender's "boots on the ground" at the site, you would be the natural person to ask first.
If you respond that you are not qualified to make a determination, then they know that if they want to get a qualified determination, they have to go somewhere else.

I don't know how the hole was depicted in the report or if there were any explanation as to the genesis of the hole, but if I were reading a report and saw a hole in the basement wall without any comment or explanation, I'd ask the person who took the photo of the hole what the story was and if, in their opinion, there were any issues.

When you say hole, do you mean something similar to what ResGuy posted, or was this a framed access (I'm thinking prison-break excavation here)?
 
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