Appraisal shock impeding house sales, refinancing


When I use the term appraisal shock, today I mean the shockingly low values that appraisers are assigning to homes up for sale or refinance.

However, the shocks began early in the decade. Remember when our homes were going up in value by 10-20% or more a year? That was a shock, too.

Now, however, according to the Wall Street Journal (subscription), those same appraisers who were once pressured by the real estate and finance industries to assign inflated values to homes so purchasers could qualify for loans are being asked to go conservative. Banks and investors, so badly stung by the decline in housing prices, have become (dare I say, too late?) risk adverse.