How can the appraiser provide an accurate appraisal if they don’t even walk through the front door?

In a drive-by appraisal, the appraiser is really just making sure that the home is still there and has no signs of serious damage after the outside of the house is assessed. That’s assuming the property is in average condition. If so, the appraiser will then use other sources of data to determine the value. Court records, county records, previous sales data, and comparable properties will all be taken into account when they are determining the property’s value.

When would a drive-by appraisal be used?

Generally speaking, the drive-by appraisal would be performed in a refinance situation where a buyer already has equity in the home, and there is less associated risk in the outcome of the appraisal.

Drive-by appraisals can be a great and quick resource for those who don’t need a specific dollar amount, but are interested in an approximate value.

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