With banks being more conservative about lending and buyers being more cautious about pulling the trigger, the appraisal is such an important part of the deal.
It’s no more “wink-wink, the deal is at $x,xxx,xxx and I’ll take you to lunch” with appraisers these days. Banks have a tight leash on them and on top of that, with sales down over 50% in many areas, it’s tough to find comparables in the market. Throw in a short or distressed sale and the deqal could be in trouble. Even cash buyers are looking more closely at appraisals now, using them to make sure they are not overpaying in a market that might fall even further.