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Is a GPS device usefull in Appraising?

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Elliott

Elite Member
Joined
Apr 23, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Oregon
Lost Appraiser: "What!!? The order says Lat 45.38693 Long 120.68998."

Waiting Owner: "No, no no, that's not it. Its Lat 45.88696 Long 120.88336, your
probably a 150 off course. "

Lost Appraiser: "Damm faxes and small fonts. We'll I'll be there, but
I'm about 175 miles away....it'll take me another 3 hours"

Waiting Owner: "Were going to have to schedule another day then, I
have to take my daughter to a swimming class."

Lewis & Clark didn't use GPS. Dead reckoning worked just fine for them.

elliott
 

MEL

Member
Joined
Feb 27, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Massachusetts
I find my TomTom GPS one of the biggest time savers since the computer. I don't use a laptop in the car or any other gizmo's, just the talking GPS. I just sit back and listen to the turn by turn directions. I cover several counties and while I am comfortable knowing the market in these area's I couldn't possibly know where each street is. :cool:
 

Steve Owen

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Missouri
Also... these things have become a lot cheaper, like most electronics. Went to a family reunion last month and a cousin from Alaska bought one at a local Circuit City. If I remember right, it was about $100... might be a pretty good thing even if it's a toy most of the time.
 

Bobby Bucks

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 27, 2002
Professional Status
Real Estate Agent or Broker
State
North Dakota
Otis no wonder you have to charge so much for rural assignments.
When your GPS malfunctions you’re probably southwest of Nogales looking at your gadgets instead of paying attention to road signs....I wonder if USPAP addresses this. :D :D
 

Ray Miller

Elite Member
Joined
Feb 20, 2002
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
Wisconsin
Mr. Bucks,

Now he was down around Nogales it would not be because his GPS was not working correctly. I would thinking he went down to get his teeth fixed. (Not many should know what this means, but a few might).
 

Otis Key

Elite Member
Joined
May 15, 2004
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
New Mexico
road signs
Those are only for suggestions. You know - 55mph, don't go less than, etc.

Ray - no comment. I'll attempt to keep this a family run section. :rainfro: :rainfro: :rainfro: :rainfro: :rainfro:
 

CANative

Elite Member
Joined
Jun 18, 2003
Professional Status
Retired Appraiser
State
California
TomTom Testimonial

The technology and mapping data must have improved significantly since this thread was oiginally started. I got a TomTom from my wife for Christmas and it is probably the best appraisal tool I have. It's like having a co-pilot in the car. I hate pulling out maps, trying to find obscure roads and then trying to navigate there while driving the car on narrow, winding roads. The TomTom will get me to the driveway of where ever I need to go. It aslo shows weird dirt roads and private driveways that are not mapped and are hidden by terrain or trees and brush. Places I didn't even know existed.

The other day I drove off six comps spread out in 3 communities. It normally would have taken an hour and a half. It only took me about 30 minutes with this gadget.
 

Stephen J. Vertin MAI

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Illinois
How can you claim to be familiar with the neighborhood if you need GPS to find it?

When it comes to this subject there is considerable confusion between residential and commercial appraisers. Most wise consumers want an appraiser familiar with the type of property within the market it is located. However, they fail to understand market size varies based on property type. Single family homes have narrow markets that could be limited to several blocks while commercial properties may have regional or national markets. Keep this is mind because I believe GPS extremely useful in commercial work. Sometimes, in Michigan's UP, comparables can be hundreds of miles apart but the markets for many of these property are homogenous. Especially in special use property situations (nursing homes, hospitals, drug treatments and elderly care, to name a few).

I use Magellan and have found it to be good especially since it is portable and can be used in rental car situations. About 20 years ago I would spend hours the night before a photo shoot with a map and note book pad witting down directions between comps. Then about 10 years ago I started using a laptop and disk (this cut my time in half). About two years ago I got Magellan and now spend 10 minutes typing in the addresses and driving. It has been a tremendous time saving device. I can not see any advantages in residential property types unless you do a lot of speciality properties where there is some distances between data sets.
 

Stephen J. Vertin MAI

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Illinois
I just realized this is a really old string. I also posted a response back in 2002. At that time it looks like I had only tried in once or twice. Now I have used it many times and remained convinced it is a great tool for commercial work.
 

Daniel Fenesan

Freshman Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2007
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
Alabama
I think a GPS is almost A MUST in this industry. Rather than wasting time looking through maps or printing directions, you just type in an address and the GPS unit takes you there step by step.

I'm not a fan of the laptop/GPS. An actual navigation system (no laptop required) is much more practicle and not that much more expensive.

Another benefit to GPS is for my sub contracters. Say they were in a certain city doing an inspection for me, and I just received another order for a property in the same city or nearby, I send them the info for the appraisal over cell phone SMS and they just type everything into the GPS.

I have three cars and all have a GPS system in it. Also serves as good time killer while your sitting in traffic driving home from an inspection and watching either TV or DVD. :new_llying:
 
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