Investor's wiki

Appraisal Fraud

Appraisal Fraud

What Is Appraisal Fraud?

Appraisal fraud is a form of mortgage fraud, by which the value of a house is intentionally appraised at a swelled amount, well over its fair market value (FMV). Appraisal fraud can happen when an appraiser is in on the scam, and unscrupulously exaggerates the value of the property. It can likewise happen when the homeowner, seller, or purchaser truly adjusts an "legit" appraisal utilizing methods like digital altering or the pay off of certain authorities.

How Appraisal Fraud Works

Appraisal fraud is one of the most common types of mortgage fraud and happens when a appraiser, or a buyer or seller, misleadingly expands (or collapses) the value of a property so it wanders fundamentally from its FMV. The exaggerated value got through appraisal fraud is commonly used to:

  • Assist a seller with getting a better price than the market would somehow warrant;
  • Assist a buyer with getting financing on the grounds that the mortgage amount could be significantly less than the appraised value of the home; and
  • Assist a homeowner with getting an ideal refinance, or home equity loan.

Before a real estate transaction happens, especially those including a mortgage loan, the value of the property will be assessed by a professional property appraiser. The appraiser carefully strolls through the property, examining the inside and outside spaces, to decide a FMV — or scope of values — for which a property ought to sensibly sell on the market.

On the off chance that the appraisal is too high or too low compared to the settled after selling price, a bank or lender might renege on the loan.

Property value appraisals are additionally utilized for tax purposes to estimate the amount of property taxes the owner must pay.

Special Considerations

To shield themselves from this wrongdoing, banks will frequently choose for utilize one of their preferred appraisers while underwriting a mortgage or loan refinance.

On account of an over-swelled appraisal, the lender might require the seller to reduce the price of the property or decline to do the loan assuming that they feel the home price is misrepresented. A buyer can in any case pay the expanded appraisal price. Nonetheless, the lender won't involve this price for their loan purposes, meaning the buyer should pay the difference in the lender's appraisal and the asking price.

Homeowners and prospective homeowners ought to be just as careful, and ensure that they secure an independent second assessment at whatever point they will settle on a choice in light of another person's appraisal.


  • Appraisal fraud is the deliberate inflation of the appraised value of a home.
  • An appraisal is intended to be an assessment of a home to decide its fair market value (FMV).
  • Appraisal fraud is generally used to either get the seller a better market price or assist a buyer with getting financing or ideal refinancing.