Q. What are the most common residential property appraisal items requiring repair?

First Alert Carbon Monoxide Detector

Missing Carbon Monoxide Detectors. The Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Prevention Act of 2010 requires that carbon monoxide detection devices must be installed in any dwelling unit which will be used for human occupation. For optimum performance, CO Detectors should be placed on every floor of the home, near bedrooms, at least 15 feet away from any fossil burning appliances to ensure accurate CO gas reads. They should also be out of the reach of small children. For more information, click here

Roof Condition. California state roof regulations require that roofs must not leak or be cause for any moisture to enter into the dwelling. Residential roofs must also be able to function properly for an additional two (2) years after the property is sold/purchased. If this is not the case, the property appraiser must indicate if the roof needs repair or replacement. 

Earthquake Strapping for Hot Water HeaterMissing Earthquake Strapping. If water heaters are not properly braced, they can topple over during an earthquake. Catastrophic damage caused by poor strapping may include broken gas lines and/or gas leaks, broken water lines and/or flooding, and fires which can cause major damage to homes and serious injuries to occupants. Therefore, water heaters in California are required to have double strapping on the upper and lower thirds of the tank in order to meet earthquake safety standards. (Tankless water heaters are excluded.) Temperature Pressure Relief Valves (TPRV’s) and overflow pipes are also required.

Frayed/Exposed Electrical Wiring. Frayed or exposed electrical wiring issues must be resolved. Most exterior outlets must be fitted with weatherproof covers, and missing light switch or outlet covers must be replaced. Uncovered junction boxes are also susceptible to damage, accidental contact, and can contain exposed, hazardous wires. Therefore, California State regulations require that energized junction boxes must be covered. 

Q. What are the requirements for the presence of Kitchen Appliances?

Appliance regulationsBuilt-in appliances are considered real property, and are required to be present by the FHA. Slide-in appliances such as a slide-in refrigerator or stove are considered personal property and are not generally required by the FHA. Additionally, if a gas appliance is not present, regardless of its location in the dwelling, the gas line must be capped.

Q. If I’m buying a home, should the seller’s real estate agent receive a copy of my lender’s appraisal?

Greg Reynolds, Vice President of Operations at Asset Valuation & Marketing has published an informative article in LinkedIn as to why the seller’s agent should NEVER receive a copy of the appraisal. Reason number 1: the appraisal is not for the seller’s agent or the buyer’s agent; it’s for the lender. Click here to read the article.