Why choose Joel Ward Appraisals?

Joel is one of the areas most experienced and knowledgeable residential real estate appraisers. Joel was recognized as a leader in the real estate appraisal profession by his appointment to the Real Estate Appraisal Administration and Disciplinary Board by Gov. Quinn in 2014. In addition, Joel has been certified as a USPAP (Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice) instructor by the Appraisal Foundation. Each member of Joel’s appraisal staff has been thoroughly trained and is kept current with respect to all aspects of appraisal practice. And, finally, each of our appraisers is committed to providing honest and accurate real estate appraisals to each of our clients.

Appraisal FAQ

  • What does “market value” mean?
    • The definition of “market value” used in appraisal work means the most probable sale price of the subject property on the day of inspection, assuming that it would have been exposed to the market for a reasonable time prior to that date. Note that this definition is neither the highest price the property could bring, nor the lowest price a seller might be willing to accept. Rather it is the “most probable” or “most likely” sale price.
  • Why might I need an appraisal?
    • Homeowners who believe that the assessed valuation of their home is too high often hire an appraiser to perform an appraisal which might be helpful in convincing the County Board of Review to lower the assessed valuation. Families involved in divorce typically need an appraisal for marital real estate prior to a property settlement or litigation. Executors of estates often need an appraisal in connection with the inheritance of real property. Homeowners who have chosen to sell their homes “By Owner” are well-advised to obtain an appraisal of their home in order to establish a realistic asking price.

What is an appraisal?

An appraisal of real property is an independent, objective and unbiased opinion on value based upon industry-recognized methods with respect to data collection and analysis. Briefly, the appraisal process starts with a detailed inspection of the home to determine its relevant characteristics of value, e.g. square footage, presence of a basement, age, room count, quality of construction, condition, etc. Next, the appraiser researches the market segment for the subject property to determine trends in values, and the relative supply/demand relationships. The next step involves researching the market to identify the most recent sales of homes which are most similar to the subject property, and the conditions of those sales. The appraiser then makes quantitative adjustments to account for differences between the comparable sale properties and the subject. Finally, the appraiser considers the results of this analysis in the context of the overall market, and reconciled on a final opinion of value for the subject.

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