Appraisers mostly are upbeat about home price increases and generally are becoming more confident about the state of the U.S. housing market, according to survey results released April 24 by Leawood, Kan.-based appraisal management company United States Appraisals.
The survey of 600 appraisers revealed that 55 percent indicated a mildly or moderately strong level of confidence in the housing market while 25 percent said they were neutral.
“Appraisers tend to be realistic, focused on their local markets and unmoved by news stories and national numbers,” Aaron Fowler, president of United States Appraisals, said in a news release. “We believe they provide a good gauge of the status of the housing market. After the last few years, a mildly strong level of confidence shows some definite improvement in appraiser attitudes.”
Around 46 percent of respondents reported seeing a small increase in home values, while 16 percent said values have gone up moderately.
However, some sounded a note of caution, adding, “I have seen some upward bump, but too many foreclosures and short sales still on the market are holding prices down.” Another noted that, “Inventory is down, buyer activity is strong. There have been quite a few cash sales and interest rates are low … [but] if the cash sale activity slows down and the interest rate rises, the resale market could slow down.”
Regarding their own business, more than 25 percent of surveyed appraisers reported that their business was mildly better, with 18 percent reporting moderate increases and 19 percent stating that business has significantly improved. One respondent said there has been “significantly more activity at middle and upper end of the valuation range.”
However, 15 percent of respondents said that their business had been reduced.