Handbook 4000.1 505 Effective Date: 09/14/2015 | Last Revised: 12/30/2016
Cosmetic or minor repairs are not required, but the Appraiser must report and consider them in the overall condition when rating and valuing the Property. Cosmetic repairs include missing handrails that do not pose a threat to safety, holes in window screens, cracked window glass, defective interior paint surfaces in housing constructed after 1978, minor plumbing leaks that do not cause damage (such as a dripping faucet), and other inoperable or damaged components that in the Appraiser’s professional judgment do not pose a health and safety issue to the occupants of the house
If the dwelling or related improvements were built after 1978, the Appraiser must report all defective paint surfaces on the exterior and require repair of any defective paint that exposes the subsurface to the elements.
If the dwelling or related improvements were built on or before December 31, 1978, refer to the section on Lead-Based Paint.
Improvements Built on or Before 1978
The Appraiser must note the condition and location of all defective paint and require repair in compliance with 24 CFR § 200.810(c) and any applicable EPA requirements. The Appraiser must observe all interior and exterior surfaces, including common areas, stairs, deck, porch, railings, windows and doors, for defective paint (cracking, scaling, chipping, peeling, or loose). Exterior surfaces include those surfaces on fences, detached garages, storage sheds, and other outbuildings and appurtenant Structures.
Termite Inspections will not be required as long as there is no evidence of termite infestation or damage. Below is the excerpt addressing when an appraiser would require a termite report.
Wood Destroying Insects/Organisms/Termites
The Appraiser must observe the foundation and perimeter of the buildings for evidence of wood destroying pests. The Appraiser’s observation is not required to be at the same level as a qualified pest control specialist.
If there is evidence or notification of infestation, including a prior treatment, the Appraiser must mark the evidence of infestation box in the “Improvements” section of the appraisal and make the appraisal subject to inspection by a qualified pest control specialist.
The Appraiser must observe the physical condition of the plumbing, heating and electrical systems. The Appraiser must operate the applicable systems and observe their performance. If the systems appear to be damaged or do not appear to function properly, the Appraiser must condition the appraisal for repair or further inspection.
The Appraiser must notify the Mortgagee if the electrical system is not adequate to support the typical functions performed in the dwelling without disruption, including appliances adequate for the type and size of the dwelling.
The Appraiser must examine the electrical system to ensure that there is no visible frayed wiring or exposed wires in the dwelling, including garage and basement areas, and report if the amperage and panel size appears inadequate for the Property. The Appraiser must operate a sample of switches, lighting fixtures, and receptacles inside the house and garage, and on the exterior walls, and report any deficiencies. The Appraiser is not required to insert any tool, probe or testing device inside the electrical panel or to dismantle any electrical device or control.
The Appraiser must notify the Mortgagee if the plumbing system does not function to supply water pressure, flow and waste removal.
The Appraiser must flush the toilets and operate a sample of faucets to observe water pressure and flow, to determine that the plumbing system is intact, that it does not emit foul odors, that faucets function appropriately, that both cold and hot water run, and that there are no readily observable evidence of leaks or structural damage under fixtures.
The Appraiser must examine the water heater to ensure that it has a temperature and pressure-relief valve with piping to safely divert escaping steam or hot water.
If the Property has a septic system, the Appraiser must examine it for any signs of failure or surface evidence of malfunction. If there are readily observable deficiencies, the Appraiser must require repair or further inspection.
The Appraiser must notify the Mortgagee if the roof covering does not prevent entrance of moisture or provide reasonable future utility, durability and economy of maintenance and does not have a remaining physical life of at least two years.
The Appraiser must observe the roof to determine whether there are deficiencies that present a health and safety hazard or do not allow for reasonable future utility. The Appraiser must identify the roofing material type and the condition observed in the “Improvements” section of the report.
The Appraiser must report if the roof has less than two years of remaining life, and make the appraisal subject to inspection by a professional roofer.
When the Appraiser is unable to view the roof, the Appraiser must explain why the roof is unobservable and report the results of the assessment of the underside of the roof, the attic, and the ceilings.
Appliances refer to refrigerators, ranges/ovens, dishwashers, disposals, microwaves, and washers/dryers.
Appliances that are to remain and that contribute to the market value opinion must be operational.
Must a new or existing home have a stove in order to be eligible for FHA financing?
Neither a new home nor an existing home has to have a stove in order to be eligible for FHA financing.