“We just got our apprasial back for a refi today. We have a townhouse(3 bedroom 2.5 bath) in a planned unit development where we own the small lot we are on. The appraiser used all townhome style condominiums where there is no ownership of the lot, but instead there is a joint ownership of the entire complex. I understand that there were no recent sales or listings in my neighborhood, but I don’t think this would be considered a comparison of apples to apples. I’ve called the guy twice but he won’t return my calls.”
You are well within your rights to request the lender to provide another appraisal. While it isn’t always easy to tell the difference between an attached single family home and a condo, a real estate professional needs to be able to.
You are correct that the appraiser failed to select appropriate comparables as the differences in ownership between an attached single family home of townhouse style, is very different than a condominium unit that is a townhouse style. The ownership rights are key and critical and absolutely would be considered impactful in determining the appeal of a property.
The appraiser is under no obligation to return your call, however it would certainly be professional to do so. According to the Gramm Leach Bliley Act, the appraiser is not permitted to discuss any of the details of the appraisal with anyone other than the client, who is likely the lending institution managing your refinance. Even I have received many a call from a homeowner. While I never discuss the details of the appraisal itself, I’m happy to return a call and explain the process. Your best bet and most likely route to a successful resolution, lies in your relationship with your lender. Call them, or better yet, write your concerns about the appraisal in an email and send it to your loan consultant, requesting that either a new appraisal be provided or that the appraiser correct the appraisal and use comparables that are applicable and appropriate.