Appendix A: Pre-Appraisal Contact/Interview Procedures

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Section 1: Overview

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The ROW PD project manager should follow some general pre-appraisal contact (interview) procedures that will assist in the proper assignment of appraisals.

A pre-appraisal contact is that first personal interview with a property owner to discuss the state’s proposed acquisition and to gather information that will assist an appraiser in preparing his appraisal report.

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As required by federal regulations, an Informational Notice letter (form ROW-N-INTO Informational Notice to Owner) must be given to every property owner. This letter can be prepared as an individual Word document. This letter can be personally delivered to the property owner at the pre-appraisal contact or sent by Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested.

A personal interview (either by person or by telephone) with the owner or his designated agent upon the property to be appraised is preferred. In some cases this cannot be accomplished and correspondence will be necessary. Whatever the situation, an attempt should be made to obtain pre-appraisal information from each owner.

Form ROW-A-PAC Pre-Appraisal Contact with Property Owners should be used to record data collected during the interview and inspection of the property (see section below on completing this form). The information recorded will help estimate appraisal fees and furnish instructions and materials to the appraiser.

The interview will serve the dual purpose of acquainting the owner with the proposed acquisition and to gather the necessary information for proper assignment and review. The property’s preliminary right of way map should be reviewed with the owner; and, any discrepancies or corrections should be made before appraisal assignments are issued.

ROW PD or a ROWAPS consultant negotiation agent should explain the state's procedure for acquiring right of way; and, that an independent and qualified appraiser(s) will be selected to appraise the parcel to be acquired. General acquisition questions from the property owners should be answered; however, questions of a technical or engineering nature may need to be answered by other qualified personnel at a later date. There should be no discussion as to the property’s value; however, the owner should be assured that no determination of value will be made until the proper appraisal report(s) have been completed, reviewed and approved.

If the acquiring agency is considering the use of a non-appraisal estimate such as the ROW-A-8 Memorandum of Value Determination and/or ROW-A-7 Real Estate Value Finding to value a parcel or parcels, the Pre-Appraisal Contact is recommended as being the most appropriate time to consider their use and, if necessary, obtain the approval of the Owner. Please refer to the instructions for the ROW-A-7 and ROW-A-8 forms for the requirements for their use.

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