An accurate property valuation is just one of the many real estate issues that may be addressed in court. When a court order or judgement is on the line, testimony from a real estate expert can be the difference in an outcome in your favor, or not.
Whether you own a single family home or multiple residential investment properties, or if you have inherited a property, or are the developer of a commercial real estate venture, there is a chance that at some point you may need to consider hiring a consultant to work through disputes related to your property. This is the time to make sure that you find someone who can provide both residential and commercial property valuations, and is qualified as an expert to help you prove your case. Some of the types of cases that may require Arkansas real estate expert testimony include:
Property Tax Appeals & Estate Tax Returns
Imagine getting your property tax bill and discovering the municipality has increased the value of your property to some of the highest values you have seen. If you are convinced the amount is incorrect and would like to appeal their ruling, you need to have a form of expert testimony to get the tax valuation down to a level that matches the real property value.
Likewise, tax court litigation requires the engagement of an expert witness in order to protect the taxpayer’s rights in reaching a just decision regarding a property’s value on an estate tax return. This is not an uncommon type of case, as the IRS can sometimes undervalue a property and deny certain discounts.
Foreclosures & Condemnations
Given the fluctuations in the real estate market over the last several years, many Arkansas homeowners can avoid judgment or get that judgment substantially reduced if they work with an expert that can provide testimony of the property’s valuation required to substantiate a claim in court.
Under Arkansas law, even if you lose your home to foreclosure, the lender may request a deficiency judgment in order to be made whole. In effect, if a home is sold for less than what is owed, the borrower is still responsible for that amount. However, one of the caveats under Arkansas law is that the lender may only apply for a judgment on the lesser of two amounts: the amount owed minus the sale price or the current market value minus the sale price.
When a party’s property is taken by government for public use through their power of eminent domain, the resulting litigation, known as a condemnation proceeding, requires an appraisal and a qualified expert to advocate for the just compensation to be awarded to the property owner. This valuation takes into account the current and future economic value as well as the cost of relocating.
After a natural disaster such as a tornado, damaging wind, hail, or flood, rebuilding your home or commercial property is essential. If an insurance company tries to settle your claim for less than what you believe the property is worth, the potential of not being able to rebuild is very real. Regardless of whether your property is classified as an industrial building, residential property, or farming land, you need a property valuation to file for an insurance settlement that protects your investment.
To arrive at a fair settlement for both parties in a divorce settlement, quite often an appraisal and testimony are needed to assist the judge in arriving at a reasonable decision. This appraisal is commonly called a divorce appraisal, and can become a significant factor in determining the assets of each party especially if you owe more than what the shared home is worth according to fair market value.
Developer and Lender Disputes
In some cases, lenders and developers may find themselves in a dispute regarding the terms of a loan contract. For example, a lender may include a clause that allows them to foreclose on a development if a number of units are not sold. Other types of suits may involve breach of contract which may be the lender not releasing funds for completed work. It is imperative to have an expert who can consult the wronged party regarding the development’s value and contract in order to ensure a successful outcome.
None of us like to think about the potential of being involved in a property value dispute, but when you are, it is good to know that there is someone that can provide Arkansas real estate expert testimony to ensure you are supported fairly in court.
If you are faced with any type of real estate transaction that may require Arkansas real estate expert testimony, contact Ferstl Valuation Services today. Call 501.313.0641 to get the assistance you need to substantiate your case.