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5 Hints for Shorter Turn Times

The appraisal profession is continuously evolving. Often, it seems, appraisers are asked to present extra information or have steps added to their research. They do this additional work to ensure the end user receives the best analysis. To keep up with the continuously changing requirements, Property Services - Otter Tail Appraisals is continuously seeking additional tools and tweaking processes to increase efficiency so we can do more work for our clients. Since Property Services - Otter Tail Appraisals knows that time is important to everyone, here are a couple of tips you can do to trim turn times on any appraisals ordered with Property Services:

  1. Are you ordering appraisals online? When you order online, you receive automatic e-mail acknowledgements that the request was received, and fast, secure .PDF format report delivery. It's the single biggest time saver available to both of us! We don't have to re-key information from a fax, and you don't have to wonder whether the order was received.

  2. Are you providing complete and accurate data about the subject property? There's nothing like being one number off on the street address to add unnecessary time to an appraisal assignment. Unique identifiers like a tax parcel number, plat map number, or subdivision name are good data to pass along with your request. Even a list of recent sales from the area is welcome — however, remember that professional appraisers are lawfully required to do their own due diligence on comparable sales, and ours may differ from yours.

  3. If you have any questions about your property or an assignment we're working on for you, feel free to call us at 218-371-5694

  4. Are you letting us know up front any features of the property that might make it unique? It's relatively easy to appraise a cookie-cutter house. Most of an appraiser's time is spent analyzing how details unique to a property add to or detract from what otherwise would be a property's market value. At the time you order your report, be sure to let us know if there are unique elements of the home or surrounding area -- for example, it's had a recent addition constructed, it's subject to zoning restrictions, and it's predisposed to flooding. These are things we'd find out on our own anyway, and knowing them sooner makes your report arrive quicker.

  5. Did you make the occupants of the home aware of what to expect? Confirming an inspection time and date with the homeowner can be one of the most time consuming steps in the appraisal process. We understand that a homeowner may be apprehensive with an unknown person inspecting every square foot of their home, taking pictures, and making abundant notes. Having the thought that it will increase the value, some homeowners believe they have to make the place spotless before the inspection . So they delay the appraisal inspection until it is cleaned.

    Coming directly from you -- a trusted party with whom they already have a business relationship -- some information about the appraisal process, who we are, and especially that dusting and polishing won't affect their home's value one bit, will help move the process along for everyone. I encourage you to point them to this website, where we have several pages of useful information for homeowners and others regarding the appraisal process. Have them call us if they want to meet the staff and learn more about our services. And tell them it's to their benefit to set the appointment quickly!


  6. Use our website to keep track of your report's status. Why are you still playing phone and fax tag when our website offers up-to-the-minute status updates available online, anytime, 24/7? As each important milestone in an assignment is completed, that information can be viewed instantly online. There's no easier way to track the status of your report.