Where, Exactly, is Your Subject Located?
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Appraisers, I have another ‘observation’ to discuss, based on separate reports where I found the same type of subject location reporting by different appraisers working in different areas, nowhere close together.
This ‘observation’ concerns the reported physical location (on form page 1 Neighborhood comment section) of the appraised property verses its street address and ZIP Code. This is especially relevant to appraisers who work in Suburban and Rural areas.
Street addresses and ZIP Codes are assigned by the United States Postal Service, for THEIR convenience and operations. Those addresses and ZIPs may extend far from city limit lines which is the primary city name for the property address.
My concern arose when I ‘observed’ appraisers reporting the location of the subject “” a particular city, when in fact, the subject’s location was miles away, outside the city limits.
Case #1 – the appraiser said the subject was ‘in’ the mailing (street) address city, and discussed the population density of that particular jurisdiction. Problem was, the actual location of the subject was about 5 miles east, in an unincorporated area of the county, but very near the city limits of another city in that county. The population info for the address city was irrelevant as it did not apply to the subject’s location.
Case #2 – the appraiser said the subject was ‘in’ the street address city, but in fact, the property was located about 6 miles northeast, in a rural area. The report correctly reported the subject’s county, but incorrectly stated the subject was ‘in’ the city in a different county.
Case #3 – in our area, we have a ZIP Code area assigned to a particular city, but the code boundary and city name associated with the street address extends about 10 miles north into another county. The physical location of a subject in that area is NOT ‘within’ the city, even though the street address city name is for that particular city.
The point here is to correctly report the subject’s physical location on this hunk of dirt called EARTH. If the subject has a particular city name attached to the street address, but is not actually within that city, disclose the physical location as being “X” miles directionally outside that city, or from another closer city/town. And even though you have checked the ‘Location’ box as one of the three choices, use that ‘box name’ in your location description comments to emphasize the subject’s location.
This kind of inaccuracy found by a lower level or even a forensic reviewer (at the very beginning of a report) will cause the reviewer to examine the report in even greater detail with their magnifying glass or electron microscope. If you make an error describing the physical location of the subject, the assumption by the reviewer will be more report errors will be found.
Remember that reviewers consult many data sources, aerial photos, etc., to double-check your report info. If you are not accurate, you WILL be challenged and will be asked for additional explanations.