Introduction to AOA Standards

Home Introduction to AOA Standards

In order to ensure public confidence in appraisal reports, it is imperative that the appraisal process and the appraisal report conform to the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP).

Regarding Internet online appraisals, like traditional personal property appraisals done using photographs (most notably when the subject property is no longer available for inspection such as because of fire loss or theft), online appraisal reports are necessarily conducted under limiting conditions which results in a value conclusion based on defined extraordinary assumptions such as to identity, age, condition, or authenticity.

If the extraordinary assumptions are so limiting that the appraiser is unable to arrive at a value conclusion which is not misleading to the client, the appraiser must decline the assignment or obtain more information in order to arrive at a non-misleading value conclusion. As with any appraisal making use limiting conditions and/or extraordinary assumptions, USPAP requires that the report disclose that such assignment conditions might effect the assignment results.

Online appraisal reports rely completely on client-provided information that is often non-verifiable. Since information provided by the client is normally not subject to independent verification by the appraiser, online appraisal reports are typically restricted-use appraisal reports, i.e., they are normally intended to be used only by the client for personal, limited applications such as a client's contemplated sale or purchase, or personal planning.

Note, though, that in circumstances such as litigation or damage claims involving property that has been stolen or lost and is no longer available for personal inspection, the online appraisal process is an appropriate means of determining value even if there are intended users of the appraisal other than the client.

The Association has adopted the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) as promulgated by The Appraisal Foundation of Washington, DC. AOA members shall conduct appraisals and prepare online appraisal reports in accordance with USPAP and with this AOA Appraisal Report Writing Standard.

Click here for the AOA Appraisal Report Writing Standard.

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