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How Long Is The Appraisal Good For?

By Elizabeth R. Elstien

A home appraisal is a professional valuation of your home that may be requested by a lender in a property sale or others that have an interest in a property's value. This valuation can be used for a variety of purposes -- an estate sale or settlement, collateral worth or mortgage loan. An appraisal does not last forever. It has a specific time limit to remain current and useful.

However, there is no set time for an appraisal's usefulness. Many factors determine exactly how long an appraisal is good for, such as use of appraisal, current market conditions in area and type of mortgage loan.

If you are using the appraisal for estate settlement, there is really no set date the appraisal expires, as it is for historical value, unless the property acquired through an estate settlement is being sold. Even in this case, the appraisal usefulness time will vary depending on conditions noted above.

Valuations for property sales are generally good for about three to four months if the valuation was done for a mortgage loan. But that time frame is contingent on the market in your area. In a fast-paced, active market where values quickly change, an appraisal only may be good for a few months. In a really slow market with little change, an appraisal can be good for six months or longer.

The loan type or lender also comes into play when deciding how long an appraisal is good for. For instance, a federally backed FHA home loan is good for 120 days but can be extended another 30 days if extra time is needed to close the sale. Under certain conditions, a lender may decide to use an out-of-date appraisal with the addition of a signed Recertification of Value and supporting paperwork from the appraiser.

As the time period an appraisal is good for varies depending on a variety of factors, find out how long your appraisal can be used before the expense of another appraisal is needed or the sale is lost.

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About The Author

Elizabeth R. Elstien has worked in real estate for over 15 years as a real estate...

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