COVID-19 & Best Practices for Real Estate Appraisers

I certainly hope that the concerns over COVID-19 are over dramatized.  But, I do think it is prudent to operate in the best interests of our clients, partners, organizations and the health of our families.  To that end, I wanted to provide clients and partners with clear communication as we navigate the difficulties of COVID-19, as well as potential opportunities from changing interest rates and economic conditions.

As an independent appraiser, I am fairly well positioned to minimize exposure risks, and do not anticipate any disruptions to capacity or scheduling at the present time.  I am taking reasonable precautions to minimize contact during site visits, including meeting with property owners and borrowers during off hours, and will be adjusting my schedule for evening and weekend site visits as needed.

Where appropriate, I am also encouraging clients to order concise appraisal reports with limited property inspections and scope of work.  In many cases, adequate property details can be attained from an exterior only or minimal interior inspection.  I will certainly advise otherwise if a particular property requires a more complete examination.

As an added benefit, I am typically able to provide a two-week turnaround time on concise reports, which can be prepared either as restricted use appraisals or as appraisal reports, depending on your needs.  If you are client and unfamiliar with this particular work product, I am happy to send you a sample report.

I look forward to our continued partnership.  If I can be of assistance in any regard, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Timothy Cronkright

New Service Areas

The Cronkright Company has recently expanded service areas to include norther Indiana.  Service areas include Elkhart, Gary, Ft. Wayne, Indianapolis and the surrounding counties.  Clients in need of appraisal services in these areas can rely on our professionalism and work ethic in completing commercial property appraisals.  From multi-family apartments to office and industrial property appraisals, the Cronkright Company has the expertise you need in Indiana.

Our services are also available through local affiliates in Tennessee, including Nashville, Clarksville, Knoxville, Chattanooga, Jackson and Memphis market areas.

When do I need an appraiser?

Recently, I received a phone call from a property owner asking for an appraisal.  But, when I began to ask why he needed an appraisal, it was clear that an appraisal would not serve his purpose.  Still, it is an appropriate question to ask, when do I need an appraisal?

It is useful to have an understanding of what an appraisal does, and does not do, when deciding if you need an appraiser.  An appraisal is a qualified professionals opinion of property value at a specific and fixed point in time.  In certain cases, an appraisal can look forward for a precise and well defined period, like construction time.  In any case, a current appraisal is more reliable than an appraisal projecting values down the road.

For property owners looking towards a future sale, an appraisal is generally not an effective tool.  Marketing efforts involve much more than establishing a value. In most transactions, an appraisal will be required for the purchaser, not the seller.  Generally, I recommend contacting a qualified commercial broker first if you anticipate the sale of a property, and need a place to start.

So, when do I need an appraiser? I recommend an appraisal when the value of a property is a significant part of a financial decision.   Common examples of this include financing decisions, land contracts, appraisals for IRS purposes -such as donations and estates- property tax appeals, and litigation. When you are considering a decision based on the value of real estate; an appraisal can provide an objective analysis to assist you in that process.

The Importance of Appraiser Due Diligence

A single comment can turn a routine property inspection to a memorable exchange. Not long ago, I had a local investor remark that I was the only appraiser he had ever seen measure the building themselves.  Normally, this might indicate a lack of exposure to practiced appraisers.  But, it turns out that this investor has dealt with several appraisers in the past years, all for on the same property.  Nobody had taken the time to measure it before.

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Expanded Service Areas

When the Cronkright Company, LLC opened for business in 2014, made a deliberate decision to focus on market areas where we could provide the best level of service to our customers. This decision meant a choice to remain in our local market areas. We focused our efforts in areas where we had the greatest familiarity, best resources and could provide the highest level of service. Our clients have benefitted from this approach. We delivery a consistent, high-quality work product and appraisal services on schedule with reliability. But, an appraiser’s job description is about more than familiarity with the local market.

A qualified commercial appraiser requires a diverse skill set, ability to research new market areas and deliver a professional analysis to the client. These are the skills we possess. Abilities that can be brought to any market and work for any property.  For 2015, we are offering our appraisal services in an expanded market areas covering the state of Michigan. More detailed information on our service areas can be found here.

We look forward to assisting you on your next project. Anywhere it happens to be.


In the course of my career, I’ve had clients who saw the appraisal as a cost of doing business. A cost they would rather avoid, but could not. I’ve dealt with clients who did not understand what an appraiser is or does, but who required an appraisal regardless.  Some clients want the appraiser to address every conceivable facet of their property. Others would happily scale back the project to a few pages and a value estimate.

So what does an appraisal really provide to clients?

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