Its a big problem for those who do BPOs or Broker Price Opinions, or values of homes for lenders. We have to compare the GLA or Gross Living Area. Many times the total square footage on the MLS form isnt really correct. We dont know if its living area, finished or unfinished, etc without going in. And, many real estate people play it safe by using the tax gla but its often incorrect! I also see 1/2 baths called full baths on tax docs. Drives me crazy when I have to explain it in my evaluation. In the old days, lol, (I started in 1979) we hand measured everything and used the exterior walls which isnt really true gla but we also measured every inch of space and categorized it.
Consider that 'partially finished' or even fully finished doesnt mean LEGAL. It may not conform to code or to the lenders rules. For example, a bedroom off a kitchen or a room w no closet. Also celings under 8 feet, etc.