Thanks for your post. I won't comment on your appraisal because I, too, have run into some strange valuations lately. I will say, however, that attached housing has stymied appraisers for years.
But, I did want to clear up any continuing mistakes about homeowners associations and attached housing.
1. There is NO SUCH THING as a PUD. The phrase "PUD" or Planned Unit Housing is actually just another named for a planned community. It does NOT, however, tell you anything about the type of ownership for the home.
2. A townhome is NOT automatically a PUD. A townhome can be either a condominium or a PLANNED DEVELOPMENT (PD). A lot depends on whether the townhome is a discrete property with vertical walls that do not overlap other living units. A condominium's boundaries are described three-dimensionally, as a building "envelope" or "unit", and the planned development is a LOT and includes ownership of land as well as of the building on the land. Because the owner of a planned development lot has both the land and building as part of their ownership, a PD owner's property is considered more valuable.
The difference in value could be a correction to the type of ownership you actually have for this unit.
3. A "townhome" is a type of architecture, often called a "row house" in the East, and is characterized by being attached to another home. However, a townhome with air space that overlaps another unit (even if that overlap is minimal--one or two feet) will be a condominium rather than a planned development.
So it could be the difference between the condominium and the planned unit classification. However, to know for certain, talk with your mortgage agent or bank about the appraisals.
Yes, it is strange that the 120K delta would be due to land value, but I am also puzzled that the sq footage changed. In the higher appraisal, the house about 83 sq ft more than the county records.
Is this again subjective to what the appraiser measures ? I can't imagine how a rectangular garage can have different measures.
Appraisers typically try to come up with a range that covers the offered price, so you'll very often see the appraisal come in at exactly the offer price. To complicate the situation further, a buyer's appraisal gives a very different value as a lender's appraisal. There's that much wiggle-room in the subjective appraisal guidelines.
First, it would really help to know the answer to Terriâ€™s question: â€œAre these actually appraisals from licensed appraisers or opinions of values from other sources?â€ before tackling the valuation disparity.
If you have a true Appraisal from a Licensed Appraiser you can ask that an â€œAppraisal Reviewâ€ be performed, but donâ€™t waste your money unless you have identified a material fact that would change the propertyâ€™s value.
So, since we do not have all the info at this point Iâ€™ll skip to some clarifications that may be of help to you.
A home is typically classified as a single family residence, condominium, cooperative, manufactured home, or PUD.
â€œTownhomeâ€ is really just a description of how a property looks and feels. Any of the formerly defined prop types can also be "attached" or "detached"... i.e. an "attached SFR", or a "detached condominium" aka "site condominium".
A "site condominium" can look like a house, but usually has a "zero lot line" (meaning your neighborâ€™s side of their home is the wall in your side/back yard delineating the property line.
To muddy the waters, many agents will list a Condo as a "Townhome" when it's really a "Townhome-style" Condo.
The primary difference between a PUD Townhome and a "Townhome-style" Condo is the PUD structure sits on land owned by the purchaser. However, while it's possible, Iâ€™m hesitant to accept the full $120K delta can be attributed to the dwellingâ€™s land value -- and assuming you actually are looking at a true Appraisal(s).
Townhouses are usually part of a PUD, and both have HOA's.
The HOA is key element.
The real comparison would be a CONDO to a TOWNHOUSE, where the Townhouse sits on the ground and will have a yard, patio and garage.
As far as the Appraisers are soncerned; it sounds like you got an appraiser who was schooled in the last few years, by Banks who were overly conservative, being very careful to protect the Bank's interests. Don't be angry; you'd want someone covering your deriere too.
Appraisals can vary, especially if the appraiser is not familiar with the area value and in today's crazy multiple offer market makes valuation very challenging.
Are you the seller or buyer? As for accepting the appraisal value it will be up to the lender and then whether or not you want the property.
Is it legit to accept the second appraisal which calls this property a PUD ?