Will my home pass an FHA appraisal? What do Appraisers Look for during an FHA Appraisal? – Tips on passing for FHA Financing.

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Jameson Sotheby's/Anywhere Appraisals


Will my home pass an FHA appraisal? What do Appraisers Look for during an FHA Appraisal? – Tips on passing for FHA Financing.


I frequently come across lenders, agents, and home owners that ask me what appraisers look for during an FHA Inspection and what specific items would pass. In this post, I am going to try to give you a better understanding of what you need to do in order for your home to pass FHA appraisal requirements.

In order to understand if your home will pass an FHA inspection, you first need to understand that the appraiser is not a Home Inspector. An appraiser is someone who determines the current market value of your home. The appraiser reports only what he sees and is visibly noticeable to him. The inspector will inspect the home more in depth to determine the condition of the property and to see if all the mechanicals are running correctly. The inspector will also test plumbing, electrical, and gas. 


There are three key terms to better understand if your home will pass an FHA appraisal:


1)   SAFETY – Does anything in the home affect the safety of anyone who may be in the home? You will need to take a look around and see if anything can pose a threat to anyone in the home, big or small. Are there stairs leading downstairs that are missing a hand rail or can potentially cause someone to fall? Is there a deck in the rear that is wobbly and can possibly collapse? Is there paint peeling in the kitchen above the cooking area? Perhaps a door has a broken knob which would be susceptible to someone easily breaking in? Is there a broken window in the living room? These are all issues for concern and all of these would need to be fixed or replaced. You will need to use your judgment and common sense to see if anything would affect the safety of anyone occupying the home.


2)   SECURITY – Security is not something that affects one’s actual safety such as a break in, it is the factor that affects marketability. Is the home located near a highway or rail road tracks? Is it located next to a large commercial building? Both of these scenarios could cause external noise that could possibly decrease market value. Is there a power line in the rear of the home that is going across the top of your pool? All of these examples would not prevent one from passing FHA Inspection, but instead would be a negative factor that would have to be addressed. The appraiser would need to use similar comparables located with similar external issues.


3)   SOUNDNESS– Soundness basically relates to the parts of the home that make up the foundation, roof, basement, and anything that supports the structure of it. If there are any issues that cause damage or concern, they will be addressed in the report. Did you have a leak in the roof and now there is damage that is noticeable on the ceiling? If so, you should show proof to the appraiser that it was repaired.  There are many types of issues that can occur, however look for the ones that really stick out to you.


Take a walk around your home or have someone else do it who will not be biased. You will need to use common sense here. When walking around and you notice something affecting one of the three S’s:  SAFTY, SECURITY, and SOUNDNESS, fix it or replace it so that it will be secure. If you noticed it, then odds are the appraiser will notice it.  For a full detailed list of requirements for FHA please download Handbook 4150.2


Listed below are many common issues that occur when appraisal inspections take place. Please note that there are many other items not listed in this article, however seeing some of these may help you have a better understanding of what these types of issues may be:

· Missing Handrails (minimum 3 steps)

· Cracked doors or windows

· Carpet torn or ripped up

· Noticeable infestation

· Is it on a busy road? Lots of traffic? Commercial or industrial?

· Gas and/or Flammable tanks can’t be within 300ft of home

· Appraisers need to check the Attics as well as Crawl spaces

· Smoke Alarms

· Roof—Shingles Missing, broken, curling, missing tabs

· Proper Ventilation

· Utilities must be on at the time of inspection

· Water pressure from sink after flushing toilet

· Structural Conditions –Floor Support, Framing, Walls, Ceiling

· Exposed Wires

· Paint Peeling—Make sure it is not lead based for homes built prior to 1978

· Drainage problems


Please let me know if I can help you sell your home in Chicago. I will be sure to FHA proof your home so that no buyers are turned away when making an offer. So next time you are wondering if your home will pass an FHA appraisal, now you have the answer. Don’t let another deal slip away!


To view some of my listings available for FHA financing, please search here.


Thank you!


Comments (3)

Caroline Gerardo
Sun West Mortgage Corporation - Newport Beach, CA
C. G. Barbeau the Loan Lady nmls 324982

water heater strapping to county code

in California carbon monozide detectors are also required - much easier to install before appraiser comes (cost $ 24 at home depot cost to reinspect $150)

Oct 17, 2014 07:19 AM
Nicholas Conteduca
Jameson Sotheby's/Anywhere Appraisals - Chicago, IL
Chicago's Top Real Estate Agent - Broker/Appraiser

Great Tip! Thanks Caroline...

Oct 20, 2014 08:59 AM
Eric Andrews

Very good tips.

Eric Andrew- Chicago Home Inspector 

May 14, 2015 05:39 AM

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