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possible asbestos wrapped duct

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colleendaav

Thread Starter
Freshman Member
Joined
Sep 11, 2007
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
Wisconsin
I inspected a two unit and it appears to have asbestos wrapped ductwork, however, the "asbestos" is peeling. Not sure how to write it in my report as not to be liable, etc. Anyone had this problem?
 

stefan olafson

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 2, 2003
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
North Dakota
Yes, The simple answer is to have the homeowner wrap it with Duck Tape. The complicated answer is to require removal.

Good quality asbestos insulation is hard to beat, if it is deteriorating it can be just re-wrapped with good quality tape.

That's what we've done up here in the North Lands.
 

Don Clark

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Virginia
Are you a scientist?

Unless you are a scientist, or have done scientific testing, I would not call it asbestos. This is what I would and have put in appraisal reports when I found what you describe:

"The appraiser has observed wrapping on pipes that is of unknown composition. The appraiser cannot rule out the possibility of asbestos. The material appears to be in a friable condition. The appraiser recommends that an environmental expert determine the material, and suggest a course of remediation".


The term Friable means that the material containing asbestos, if it is asbestos, is deteriorated and the asbestos fibers have become airborne. It is when asbestos fibers are airborn that the are the most dangerous to you, and to others. I would stay far away from the area.

When you start calling things what you do not know for certain is when your liability goes way up. But in this case, so does the risk to your health.
 

William K

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 21, 2007
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Illinois
Absolutely positively ditto Dons Response! Not a scientist and beyond the scope of my appraisal assignment!

I SEE THIS! I RECOMMEND THIS!

Let the client decide whats to be done!
 

Webbed Feet

Elite Member
Joined
Feb 11, 2005
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Canada
Mr. Clark,

Love your post, but I'm not sure I agree 100%. I don't believe anyone's liability would go up for calling for an unnecessary inspection, over a possible safety concern, and turning out to be incorrect. However, I do certainly believe instructing that a homeowner should expose themselves to a possible safety hazard in some untrained, and probably inept, attempt to remediate it would certainly increase one's liability.

Webbed.
 

PropertyEconomics

Elite Member
Joined
Jun 19, 2007
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
New Mexico
New studies show that removal of asbestos is more harmful than encasement. One should never say its "friable" if you are not an expert. If you need call for a Phase 1 assessment but I would not say anything about what it appears to you .. frankly you dont know and its beyond your expertise. I think the "friable" comment will get you in trouble.
 

hal380

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 26, 2003
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Connecticut
Calling for or Requiring reports or inspections

While I agree, almost 100% with Don, I almost never "Require or Call for" any form of inspection. I would report what I saw, with pictures, and then say that "If this is a concern, then further inspection, investigation may be warranted."

I realize this may almost be a matter of semantics, however, unless we have specific knowledge and expertise, I would not expand my scope of work to boarder on "House Inspections". Like Fox news, "I Report, You Decide"

Regards

Hal
 

Webbed Feet

Elite Member
Joined
Feb 11, 2005
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Canada
P.E.

I believe we can take the "Liability" thing a bridge too far and build fences to protect from it to the point we make ourselves look utterly ridiculous too! If we keep this up it will not be long before we can't say "moss" when there is green stuff on a roof, can't say "dryrot" when we just stuck a pencil through the siding and window casings, and can't even say "hazard" when there are no safety railings around a deck thirty feet above grade.

All because we are not experts, on anything ever, in an attempt to shield ourselves from possible liability because we called for an inspection by someone who is, or the need for an obvious repair.

Webbed.
 

Elliott

Elite Member
Joined
Apr 23, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Oregon
Under the 'environmental concern' section on bottom of page 1,
"Appraiser observed asbestos type insulation around ducts. One
duct appeared to have some peeling of the wraping material.
Recommend a qualified inspection by home inspector or qualified
expert."
 

Webbed Feet

Elite Member
Joined
Feb 11, 2005
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Canada
Mr. Pollock!

LOL! Am I on both sides of the fence on this or what this morning?

Ok, so you have bubbling black crude coming out of the ground in the backyard, all the plants are dead, and the family pets all glow a nice shade of green while in the dark. So you're not going to call for, or require, an inspection and so hand out a CB1 appraisal report?

Or your assignment is an FHA one and required repairs are needed? So you don't require them?

Either you don't do any residential work, or you are trying WAY too hard to provide "As-Is" appraisals.

Webbed.

P.S. What if your conclusion of market value is of "concern," and you are sure you have copious hidden damage beyond what your photos show? Personally, I don't believe leaving it up to some UWer would be a good move.
 
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