We've completed over 500 BPO's in the past two years. We've done numerous 2nd BPO's for many asset managers looking for quality back-up valuations on other agents properties. We've also done maybe 500 monthly status/marketing reports for assigned properties.
We've completed BPO's online using Equator, Res.net, Service/Link, and other BPO company online format's. We've also completed BPO's and MSR/MMR's manually using the company's Word or Excel formats.
Many times we will seek more information about a property or comps than just information provided in the MLS. We check tax records, sometimes talk to neighbors or other agents in the area, and pay special attention to the comments section where we break out the comments into specific components that an asset manager can simply cut and paste into their clients marketing report. Every property is different but most comment sections include sections like Condition/Location, a brief comment on Sold and Active Comps, Repair/Rehab issues, and always include our Marketing. If the BPO is asking for value adjustments, we will also include a paragraph on what our value adjustments are as well (i.e., $35/SqFt, Full Bath $5,000, Half Bath $2,500, Fireplace $2,500,... and so on). See below a typical BPO comments section.
As an agent, we have to be the "eyes" for the asset manager and their client. Sometimes we need to paint a picture (literally) to convey certain issues regarding the subject property. Below is an example of a manual Monthly Status Report where we had to literally draw in notes regarding a severe upsloped back yard and unfinished patio area detracting from value. This was an overpriced re-assigned property. We had to show the asset manager why this property was not getting any action. Result? Asset Manager was able to understand the situation followed, our advice on pricing, and got the property sold.
Our valuations have only been challanged twice and list prices were set higher than our BPO values. One property we suggested a list price of $420,000. This was a rural 5 acre parcel. We had done much research on this property including talking to neighbors and other agents in the area. We even talked to the former owner who's partner tried to purchase the property at auction but the price was too high. Much of the land was un-usable and the house need a lot of rehab. An outside area appraiser suggested a value of $700,000 and the asset manager asked us to change our BPO value which we reluctantly did. The asset manager said to test the water and we can take a major price adjustment after the 30 day marketing/status report. We listed at $715,000. Unfortunately the asset manager was let-go. Our 30 day MSR/MMR suggested a $150,000 price reduction based on our original BPO value. We knew we could not ask for a $295,000 price reduction so we figured take it down to $550,000 or so. This must not have sat well with the client because after 30 days the property was reassigned and lowered to $679,000. We'll 6 months later and 3 subsequent agent re-assignments the property final sold for $340,000.
We realize there are a lot of factors that play into assignments. Our goal is to provide accurate valuations for BPO properties.