What is a report?

There are three types of (small “r”) reports: An Appraisal Report (capitalization intended), Restriced Appraisal Report or Oral Report. Written reports consist of:

• The Cover document is a required element and contains unique, appraisal-specific information, ie. intended use and users, market selection, and economic context for values.
• The Body contains item specific information, ie. a catalog or inventory describing each item.
• The Addendum contains supporting documentation for information including, but not limited to, the appraiser’s qualifications, photographs, working bibliography, tests, and reports proving authenticity or provenance, etc.

Whether the final product is a written or oral report, the process is the same, and the appraiser must determine and record the following for their workfile:

• the intended use
• the objective (what you are seeking)
• the client, owner (if different), and intended users
• the valuation approach used (why was it used and why were the others not used)
• markets considered
• any limiting conditions encountered or extraordinary assumptions needed
• an accurate description of the subject property
• the research data
• relevant comparables (when required)
• the final numerical results

The final written report formally presents findings, conclusions, and opinions in a clear, logical, and orderly manner. Some appraisals may be lengthy and complex, while other appraisals will be shorter and less detailed. The report’s level of detail (and the cost) will be proportionate to the scope of work. It will be presented as either an Appraisal Report format or Restricted Appraisal Report (restricting who has permission to use it), and will contain a synopsis of what was done. For Oral Reports, in which just the final monetary value is communicated, the same amount of background work is done, the detail is kept in the appraiser’s workfile and is not shown to the client. However, if the client wants a written report, it can be created from the workfile, but at additional expense. See a sample appraisal report.

Generally speaking, these intended uses require the following report types:

Insurance CoverageAppraisal Report
Insurance ClaimAppraisal Report
IRS EstateAppraisal Report
IRS Donation / PhilanthropyAppraisal Report
BankruptcyAppraisal Report
LitigationAppraisal Report
DivorceAppraisal Report
Personal PlanningRestricted Appraisal Report
Resale/Selling/InventoryCollection Inventory
Curiosity/baseline knowledgeOral Report

While each assignment is unique, the due diligence applied to the components above are not optional. The process is a tried and true and the results are justifiable, defendable values on which clients can rely.