Challenges In Appraising Warehouse Properties

Appraisal of a warehouse can appear straightforward compared to other appraisal assignments. A warehouse appraisal involves comparing a building that is primarily an open shell to similar buildings. Some appraisers tend to assume that one “box” is pretty much the same as another. However, a number of warehouse characteristics can present challenges during the valuation process.

Some appraisers end in using Cost Approach method as a generic method in appraising buildings. But there are several critical differences appraisers need to keep in mind. First, knowing the remaining economic life of a structure is a big factor in determining what method should be used. Appraising old structures using the cost approach method may generate an incorrect result. Income approach is the reasonable method in this situation. Second, the importance of solving the question of the highest and best use of the property- as vacant and as improved, gains ground when the subject property is old and located in a neighborhood where other best use is possible and more feasible.

In appraising these warehouses using Income Approach, it is essential to carefully consider the following factors in selecting comparables:

• Excess land
• Truss height
• Percent of office space
• Loading facilities
• Truck maneuvering distance
• Floor thickness/loading capacity
• Power service
• Land-to-building ratio
• Size relative to typical building size

The most important, location-related factors can differentiate warehouses located within the same community. The value of a warehouse facility is tied to the ability to move goods efficiently in and out of the warehouse. Any inefficiency reduces profitability.

In a challenging profession, an appraiser should think “out of the box” in looking methods that will result in a reliable and unbiased opinion of value.

What they say on Appraiser Gus?

Let our clients and peers speak.

Gus Agosto has been perceptive enough to have realized the potential conflicts of interests with regards to meeting the sellers and has been able to navigate and maneuvered satisfactorily around it, and still come out with a justifiable figure that satisfies both parties.

Of course I would recommend him to others as he has performed what was expected of him and more.”

Richard Azares
Managing Broker
DiamondCrest Real Estate Services

“Gus Agosto is highly competent and much more knowing him in the high level of ethical standard and practice. He is knowledgeable and trustworthy in his assigned work.

We were doing the appraisal business together and yes Gus Agosto is commendable.”

Tom Academia
President
Magaca Appraisal & Konsult

“As a fellow appraiser, I can say that Gus is professional and considerate to his colleagues suggestions and opinions.
He is much updated with information and current events that could have an impact on the real estate industry especially the appraisal service.

Yes, I recommend him, because one does not only get an appraiser that can present you the technical aspect of the property but also a broker that knows the marketing conditions of a given location.”

Germaine Ouano
Managing Partner
Intech Property Appraisal, Inc.

“Gus is a new breed of appraiser that can be relied on the opinion of valuation. He is very active practicing appraiser/ someday a lecturer on the update of the Real Estate Profession and economic trend in the Philippines and ASEAN.”

Oscar Labrador
Founder
Cebu Appraisers

Experience in Appraisal Matters

In real estate appraisal practice, there are challenges that an appraiser should strive to overcome and characteristics needed to acquire.

Valuing properties requires good judgment. An appraiser can use different methods in valuation, outlined in the international valuation standards. There are different approaches like market data, cost or income approach in valuation. He can also use other approaches like subdivision development approach, residual approach and many more.

But in choosing an appropriate valuation methodology is another thing. The appraiser considers not only the purpose of the appraisal laid out by its client, but the most important, the property’s highest and best use. This judgment emanates from the appraiser’s experience.

Good judgment is also required in analyzing comparables or “comps”. The appraiser identifies the “terms” of the sale – was it an arm’s length transaction in which both parties were equally motivated? Was it a relocation transaction where an owner was attempting to shorten the time on the market to find a buyer? Regardless, no one can tell the appraiser on what comparables to use. It is based on the appraiser’s judgment.

In whatever situation, an experienced appraiser has an edge. He always strive to look for other appraisal methodology and will cull more data on comparables with the sole purpose of rendering an opinion that will truly represents the true market value of the property.

Thus in real estate appraisal practice, experience and good judgment truly matters.

Life of a Real Estate Appraiser

What an appraiser does day to day ?

Real estate appraiser or valuer is someone who estimates the value of the land and the buildings. Most commonly, appraisers perform work for banks and companies, although many appraisers engage in a wide range of assignments, including for example, for sale, litigation, right of ways, divorce, valuation for financial reporting, estate planning and more. The appraisal work can vary greatly and can often be more complex than typical valuation assignments.

When carrying out appraisal work, appraisers’ main role is to provide an objective and unbiased opinion about the value of a property for their clients, who typically are owners, investors or lenders. Appraisers do this by gathering a series of facts,site inspections, interviews, statistics and other information, then analyzing the data to develop an opinion of value.

So what does an average day in the life of a typical appraiser normally look like?

Individuals who enjoy analytical thinking and problem solving generally have the makings of good appraisers, since each valuation assignment challenges the appraiser to put his/her analytical skills into practice, exercise good judgment and communicate effectively.

Although appraisers are typically based in an office, they spend a good deal of time at site visits. Most work full-time, during standard business hours, but appraisers often have the flexibility to customize their work schedules.

Depending on assignment, the appraisal site and specific tasks will vary. A licensed and certified appraiser is qualified to appraise all types of properties including lot, house and lot, condominiums, duplexes and apartments. An experienced appraiser is usually doing appraisal of all properties, but generally focuses on property used commercially, such as office buildings, stores and hotels.

Often times, an appraiser will conduct a fair amount of research up front before beginning work onsite, such as verifying legal descriptions of real estate properties in the assessors office or other public records.

Appraisal On-site

While onsite, an appraiser will inspect both new and existing properties, noting unique characteristics of the property or surrounding area, such as the property’s condition, structure, interior, amenities and upgrades. The appraiser also will photograph the interior and exterior of the property to use when preparing the appraisal report.

An appraiser usually uses the three approaches to value- sales approach, cost and income approach. Using the sales approach, the appraiser examines comparable sales after the site visit, to help determine value. The appraiser will also consider location and condition of the property, neighboring properties, documents, records, previous appraisals, the view from the property and income potential.

Depending on the assignment, an appraiser may also use the income approach or cost approach to develop an opinion of value. Cost approach seeks to determine how much a property would cost to replace (meaning, rebuild) after subtracting accrued depreciation. While income approach is a method of arriving at the appraisal value of a property on the basis of its opportunity cost.

Analyzing all of the data gathered, the appraiser prepares the written report showing the opinion of value.

Real estate appraisal is an interesting, rewarding, and challenging profession.

Successful Real Estate Consultant Review

parcs cebu (2)Philippine Association of Realty Consultants and Specialist (PARCS) successfully completed its 120 Hour Comprehensive Seminar and Review for Consultants. The seminar was conducted in preparation for the upcoming Philippine Regulation Commission Real Estate Consultant Board Examination scheduled on December 3 -4, 2014.

The seminar and review gives the participants an in-depth knowledge on consultancy, due diligence, land administration, risk and rate of return, capital budgeting, market analysis and the conduct of feasibility study.

“It gave me a profound and broader view of my real estate profession”, said Gus Agosto, one of the participant. Currently, he is a practicing real estate appraiser in Cebu and other provinces in Visayas and Mindanao. “Being an economic researcher for a quite of time, the seminar refreshes my craft and add lot of knowledge plus the practical experiences shared by the participants who are seasoned real estate practitioners themselves..”

The seminar and review participants were determined to pass the board exam. The lecturer of the review include real estate icon Tom Academia, seasoned appraiser and consultant Oscar Labrador and Alexander Lumarda.

Appraiser as an Expert Witness


Real Estate Appraisers
are often requested to provide an expert opinion as to the value of a property (an appraisal), for the purposes of determining just compensation. In an expropriation proceeding commissioners should at least be appointed to determine just compensation in accordance with the procedure in Section 5 of Rule 67 (Rules of Court). xxx the court shall appoint not more than three (3) competent and disinterested persons as commissioners to ascertain and report to the court the just compensation for the property sought to be taken.xxx

Additionally, appraisers are often requested to conduct an appraisal where the purpose is not explicitly described as being for litigation, but where litigation may result. Examples would be an appraisal completed for eviction cases, divorce proceedings, foreclosure or power of sale, or for civil forfeiture. Although appraiser’s reports are often entered into evidence for court, the appraiser is not necessarily called upon to provide expert witness testimony or to defend the report. However, it is prudent for the client ordering an appraisal to be sure the appraiser is aware of the duty of the expert witness and the court rules for report requirements, prior to engagement for an appraisal assignment.

“It is another area in our profession where we can lend services and specialize in” said Gus Agosto. Gus has been appointed by a lower court in Lapulapu City as a commissioner that will help the court in determining just compensation in expropriation case on trial. He also provided support to lawyers for litigation and court cases like eviction, judicial settlement and divorce.

The appraiser as experts may also provide retrospective appraisals, independent-appraisal analysis, appraisal review , expert witness testimony and litigation-support services in all real property valuation.

When selecting a real estate appraiser for litigation support, knowledge and experience matter. An appraiser should strive to be more knowledgeable and experienced property appraiser in providing litigation support and expert witness services.