VIRGINIA (Reuters) – The home appraisal industry has been in a tailspin as more people look for higher prices for their properties and more property owners choose to turn to home-inspection firms to find buyers, but a new study suggests the industry is slowly recovering.
A new survey by a real estate agency found the average price of homes assessed by home appraisers has fallen about 9 percent from a year ago.
The median price is down 7.5 percent from the same period last year.
The survey, by the Institute of Home Assessment (IHIA), is the first to look at price increases since it began collecting data in 2009.
The IHIA has been using data from private companies and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to determine the value of homes and assess properties for federal assistance.
In a statement, the IHCA said the survey shows that home prices have recovered significantly in many markets, including the East Coast, and that more people are finding that home appraisal firms are becoming more accessible.
“As home values rise, we are seeing that some of the most affordable homes in the country are being sold at significantly higher prices than before, which is encouraging the private sector to step up,” the statement said.
The average price dropped 5.2 percent from last year, but the median price fell 14.2%, which is still higher than the national average.
The national median home price was $315,000 in January 2017, according to the U,S.
The IHAA survey was conducted on behalf of the Institute on Friday, June 7, 2018, using a representative sample of 1,008 homes assessed in 2017.
The survey’s margin of error is plus or minus 3.7 percentage points.(Reporting by Jonathan Stempel; Editing by Peter Cooney)