At Global Real Estate Advising and Consulting, Inc., we have noticed that our corporate clients are familiar with service contracts and are comfortable with consulting and appraisal fees. We find that many of our private clients are perplexed by the process and how the fees are established.
We have outlined the steps in the process, along with how we estimate our fees.
Step One: Call or E-mail us
Most commercial valuation and consulting assignments involve some complexities, so we generally like to speak with you in person. Either call us or send us an email, and we’ll get you on the phone.
We’ll ask you details about the property, what service you need (market value, feasibility, what rent to charge, etc.), and why you need the service. We specialize in commercial properties, and therefore appraise all properties except single-family homes and building lots. Although we can legally provide residential appraisals, you’ll probably get a better price and faster service if you approach a residential appraiser for those services. If you need some names, we know excellent residential appraisers we can refer you to.
Step Two: We’ll Prepare a Proposal
One we know about your property and what you need us to do, we’ll do some more research. We’ll pull information about the property from a number of sources to see if there will be any complexities we’ll need to consider. We’ll look through our database to see what sort of similar assignments we have performed. And we’ll see what transactions have occurred lately.
Taking all of this into account, we’ll determine which of our staff will be assigned to the project, and how many hours they will invest. From this, we will determine an appropriate fee, and how long it will take us. We’ll also look at our schedule and see how soon we can get started.
We will prepare a proposal which will describe what we will do as part of our service, what the fee will be, when we will begin the appraisal process, and how long it will take. We will also include a list of information we will need to get started – things like leases, deeds, tenant lists, expenses for the property, etc.
Step Three: You Accept our Proposal
Once you have our proposal, you’ll read through, see if we have the full picture, and decide whether to accept or not. If you want us to get started, sign the last page and return it to us with a check for the retainer. Then start gathering the required information (which you can email to us) and we’ll begin our valuation of the property as soon as our schedule permits.
If you read through our proposal and think of something that might help us or affect the assignment (like you have an appraisal that was completed just a few years ago), please let us know.
Step Four: Property Visitation
After you have accepted our proposal, we will need to visit the property before we can really begin. Ideally, one or two of our staff will walk through the property accompanied by either you (the owner) or someone comparably knowledgeable about the building. During the walk-through, we assess the state of the building from the perspective of a potential buyer, take measurements if plans have not been provided to us, and ask a few pertinent questions about the property’s history. We also use this visit to photograph the property, and we’ll probably take more pictures than you expect. These photos will help us in our report preparation and will save us the need for repeat visits to the property, and a number of them will end up in the final report.
Keep in mind this is not like a home inspection – we won’t test the mechanicals or look for fire hazards. We’re just walking through the property to assess the qualities that contribute to value, notably size, condition, and functionality.
Step Five: Report Preparation
At GREAC we generally provide to our clients a narrative report that is in compliance with all USPAP regulations. The length and form that this report can take, however, vary depending on your needs. If you are seeking an appraisal for use by a third party, for example an appraisal done for tax purposes or for use in litigation, we will provide to you an in-depth report. Valuations done for these purposes will be longer, and will require a more extensive analysis of comparable properties. Due to their higher level of detail, reports for use by a third party will take our consultants longer to complete, usually anywhere from four to six weeks. If you are seeking an appraisal for your own use only, for example to assess your net worth, we are able to provide you a report that, while still arriving at an accurate value, is less detailed and in which fewer comparable properties have been analyzed. When we first begin to work together, we will ascertain together what sort of report best fits your needs/ you would prefer.
Step Six: Transmittal of Report to Client
In addition to the length and level of detail of the report, the form in which your report is delivered to you also varies depending on your needs. While we typically submit our report in a digital format to our clients, we are happy to provide the report in printed and bound versions as well.
With the final report, you will also receive an invoice in which we bill you the remainder of our fee.