There is still some confusion in the market in terms of what a house is worth. A seller puts a price on it, the buyer makes an offer based on what they have seen in the market, and then comes the appraisal. In the last couple of months I have had a home that should have appraised, but due to the lack of comparables of its size in the same area, the appraiser went over into a whole different area and it came in grossly under the purchase price. The comps were homes of the same size, year, and approximate lot size, but in a whole different city, school district etc.
In another case, I had a home with a purchase price that was questionable as to whether or not it would appraise due to a lack of comps and low comps in the area, come in at $30,000 over the contract price.
It has always been argued that appraisals are an art and not a science, but in both instances above I would argue there is a huge difference between a Monet and Kindergartener’s painting.