What is an Appraisal

An appraisal is an estimate of a property's fair market value. It's a document generally required (depending on the loan program) by a lender before loan approval to ensure the mortgage loan amount is not more than the value of the property. The appraisal is performed by an "appraiser," typically a state-licensed professional who is trained to render expert opinions concerning property values, its location, amenities and physical conditions.