Terrifying Encounters from Real-Life Appraisers

October 4, 2019, 2:30 pm Blog Home Management Seen: 87
Terrifying Encounters from Real-Life Appraisers
Terrifying Encounters from Real-Life Appraisers
Property appraisal is not typically thought of as a “dangerous” profession per se. However, personal safety is definitely something to consider when preparing for an appraisal inspection. We recently asked our real estate appraisal community on Face book, “What’s the scariest thing you’ve encountered during an on-site property inspection?” The answers we got from real-life appraisers range from surprising to funny to startling—to downright terrifying.

Mold and critters
Mold is one of the common environmental hazards you may encounter when inspecting a residential dwelling. Apparently cats and mice and possibly other small critters are another issue to look out for. Commenters said they’ve witnessed:
• “An entire interior coated in black thanks to a flooded basement and 4 years of vacancy.”
• “A disgruntled foreclosed upon homeowner sprayed the house down with water and turned the heat on full blast and closed up the house. Needless to say, there was ‘discoloration’ or ‘a mold like substance’ everywhere.”
• “Hundreds of cats in the master bedroom. Master bathroom had a mountain of feline feces. Same house had cockroaches running along walls and ceiling through cobwebs—in daylight. Cute little old lady and her daughter lived there.”
• “Mouse infested house. The walls of the basement looked like they were moving, but it was just mice. The owner yup occupied had kitty litter boxes full of mouse poison that was replaced daily and traps everywhere.”

Unsafe, unsanitary, and just plain creepy
As an appraiser, you may occasionally come across properties with safety and sanitation issues. And you may encounter homes that are just flat-out creepy. These next comments will remind you to tread lightly and maybe wear a safety mask? when entering an unknown or vacant dwelling:
• “Twice I’ve walked into a front door and almost fallen into the crawl space because there was no floor or subfloor.”
• “Flooring that crumbled under every step.”
• “Manufactured home sitting on the ground, dirt under what was left of the carpet. Occupied.”
• “Hoarding.”
• “‘Biohazard’ on carpet of very nice house where homeowner killed himself.”
• “Bloody bullet holes in a wall.”
• “Satanic messages on walls of vacant house.”
Threatening animals
In addition to critters like mice and cats, appraisers have also encountered larger, more threatening animals. Scariest run-ins with animals include:
• “A horse that wanted to fight me.”
• “Multiple dogs that want to fight me.”
• “12’ Alligator. Got within 4’. Then heard growling. Sales Office ‘forgot’ to tell me there was a gator guarding her nest in the rear yard of one of the model homes.”
• “Six Rottweilers attacking me when I was 8 months pregnant.”
Humans can also make you feel unsafe during an on-site inspection. Scary run-ins with people include:
• “Random strangers approaching me at foreclosed houses.”
• “A homeowner who proudly proclaimed that their town had no people of color.” etc.
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