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Exterior Only Inspection Question

Dear Henry,

First, thanks for the resources on your web site!

I have been asked to do an exterior-only inspection of a home on a 65 acre site in a rural location for loss mitigation. I have the assessor cards on the property, so I have some basic information, but their last inspection was several years ago. The property is behind locked gates and not at all visible from any point. I have asked to have this assignment upgraded to a full report, but the lender also does not have access and wants to proceed with a driveby only. Can I effectively do this using extraordinary assumptions with so many unknowns?

Tom Trojnar

Dear Tom,

This is a judgment you have to make.The USPAP requires that you make a credible appraisal. I would tell the client (preferably in writing) what extraordinary assumptions will need to be made to do this assignment, and get their pre-approval (again preferably in writing). Keep in mind that this appraisal may lead to a variety of problems and the lender may blame them on you. You need to ask yourself if it s important enough to your business relationship with the client to expose yourself to possible future trouble that may occur. Finally, the type of report does not have any effect on what you have to do to make a credible appraisal.
Good luck!