Assessment vs Appraisal

Parish and city property tax statements for 2022 were recently sent out.  A nice little present for homeowners as we enter this holiday season!  Ba-humbug! 😂


Property taxes are calculated by the local assessor’s office.  There are several factors that go into the calculation.  Check out to get more details on the actual calculations.  One of the primary drivers, though, is the property’s assessed value.  This value is determined by a process called an assessment.


An assessment and an appraisal may be easily confused.  Both are used to measure a property’s value.  Each has a different intended use (or, purpose).  Assessments are primarily for tax purposes.  Real estate appraisals are used to determine the property’s appraised value.  The appraised value is typically reflects the fair market value, or the amount a reasonable buyer might expect to pay for the property, at a specific point in time.


Typically, the appraisal process is more detailed and in-depth than an assessment.  An appraiser closely evaluates the subject property’s unique condition, amenities, market, and location.  When possible, the appraiser visits the house or property in person to get a thorough view of the specific property.  The in-depth analysis and understanding of the unique property allow the appraiser to closely compare, or contrast, the property to others nearby.


Assessments estimate the property’s value.  According to the Lafayette Parish Assessor’s website, real estate data and computer assisted mass appraisal programs are utilized to value properties.  These type of computer generated valuation tools can be useful when ballpark estimates are need for thousands of properties.  The models can have their downfalls (ask Zillow, but we’ll leave that topic for another post.


The timing of assessments are also an important consideration.  The real estate market and property values are constantly changing.  The fair market value of a property today will most likely be different a few months from now.  The Lafayette Parish Assessor’s website states assessed values must be updated  at least every four years but may be updated yearly.  It’s important to keep in mind the assessed values have the potential to be dated by several months or even years.


The local tax assessor websites have easy to use search tools.  The links to local websites are provided below.   Homeowners can see the assessed market value assigned to their property.  It is important to keep in mind the value is just an estimate for tax purposes.  Important real estate or financial decisions should not be based solely on the assessed market value assigned.  There is only a need to act if you have reason to believe the “assessed market value” is HIGHER than the fair market value of the property.  A higher value could mean you are paying too much in property taxes.  If you do suspect your property’s assessed value is too high, the assessor’s office can provide steps to request a re-evaluation.  Documentation such as an appraisal from a certified appraiser may be required as evidence.  Our office can assist with this request.


Lafayette Parish:

Vermilion Parish:

St. Landry Parish:

Iberia Parish:

St. Martin Parish:

Acadia Parish:

October 2022 Residential Sales Data


During October, there were 431 residential sales in the Lafayette MSA (referred to as “Acadiana” here).  The number of sales were down 10% as compared to September and down 18% as compared to October last year.  Sales volume is continuing its downward decline since it’s 2022 peak in May.  The market typically shows some decline during the Fall months, but the change is significantly more dramatic this year.  The number of sales is much closer to those from 2017 and 2018.

Sales in Lafayette parish were about 64% of the total for this Acadiana region.  Since Lafayette parish represents such a large portion, we find it useful to analyze some of the metrics by looking at Lafayette parish by itself.  The parish’s metrics and stats tend to vary slightly in comparison to the other parishes that tend to be more rural.  We also analyze all the other parishes together without Lafayette parish.  Since the individual parishes have fewer sales, the metrics tend to be “noisier” and move around more.  Trends and stats can be more easily observed when the parishes are combined and/or the data is analyzed over longer periods of time.

It’s very evident sales volume within Lafayette parish is declining.  This decline is driving much of the change within the Acadiana region.  Among the other parishes, we see a downward trend but perhaps not as pronounced.

Sales Prices

The median sales price in the Acadiana region was $232,000 for October.  The average sales price was $247,000, but we’ll reference the median to minimize the variability with using averages.  The median price has remained relatively stable within a range between $230-$234 thousand since July 2022.  Unlike sales volumes, sales prices seem to be somewhat stable and still significantly higher than pre-Covid levels.  Even in comparison to October 2021, the median sales price is about 2% higher.

Lafayette Parish’s prices trend similarly to the total Acadiana region, but the other parishes are showing some decline.  The median sales price for the Acadiana parishes excluding Lafayette was $162,000 for October.  While this is lower than the $175-187 thousand range in earlier 2022, the median sales price is still higher than October in the previous four years.

We’re also monitoring the trend of prices within the various segments of the Acadiana market.  For example, the median sales prices for various size homes have the potential to trend differently.  Currently, we’re not seeing a significant change in any of the size buckets.  The largest homes (3,000+ square feet) represent the smallest percentage of sales and cover a wide range of property sizes, so the variability month to month is to be expected.  Given the rising interest rates, we also recognize affordability is a concern within the market.  We may see buyers opting for smaller homes, so it is important monitor trends within the size categories.  We’re not seeing a significant change, yet.

Gross Living Area

Given the rising interest rates, we also recognize affordability is a concern for buyers.  We may see them opting for smaller homes, so we’re monitor trends for gross living area (GLA).  Monthly, even quarterly, averages tend to bounce around, so we must look for trends over a longer period.  Post-Covid, average living areas of sold homes did increase within Acadiana.  Average sizes have declined since the peak at the end of 2020, and the third quarter of 2022 declined about 2%.

Days on Market

The cumulative days on market (CDOM) averaged 39 days for October.  The Acadiana market has seen this metric extend slightly over the past few months. In comparison to recent years, though, CDOM is well below average.  The CDOM does vary depending upon sales price category.  For example, houses sold between $150-250 thousand (33% of total sales) averaged 28 days on the market.  Homes in the $250-400 thousand dollar range (30% of total sales) had an average of 47 days.  Within the highest price range of $750 thousand and above, the average was 78 days, but these accounted for less than 10% of total sales.

Sales to List Prices

The sales to list ratio for Acadiana was 97% during October.  The metric has moved around throughout the year but appears to have a downward trend.

Despite relatively stable sales prices, more than half (58%) of the sales in October sold for less than their original list price.  This ratio has steadily increased throughout 2022; whereas the portion of properties selling for more than the original list price has contracted.

The size of the price reductions has stayed relatively stable, but there’s just more price reductions occurring.  Of the properties with price reductions during 2022, the monthly average final sales price has ranged between 8-11% lower than the original list price.  The ratio was 8.7% during October.

Data Source: Realtor Association of Acadiana FlexMLS as of 11/7/2022

Search Criteria: Residential properties with Status = Sold and Parishes = Acadia, Iberia, Lafayette, St Landry, St Martin, and Vermilion


Appraisers make adjustments to comparables to account for differences between properties. Adjustments reflect the incremental value buyers are willing to pay for specific features.
📣📣📣Adjustments are MARKET SPECIFIC!!! There is NOT a one-size fits all dollar value for certain features. Also, keep in mind a “market” is not only defined by location. 📣📣📣
The dollar amount is based on the value of that feature to the buyers in that specific market. Some markets value certain features more than other markets.
Also, the cost of the feature often does not necessarily equal the value of the adjustment. For example, a pool may cost $75k but the value added may be much less.
⚠Be cautious of cheat sheets that include specific values for certain features. Appraisers very carefully analyze each market to determine the impact of specific features. ⚠

Panelist for LBA’s Appraisal Compliance Seminar

💥The Louisiana Bankers Association (LBA) is hosting an Appraisal Compliance Seminar in Baton Rouge today. Lane had the honor to serve as a panelist for the residential appraisal discussion.💥
Appraisers from around the state discussed topics including:
✅ State of the current market
✅ Reconsiderations of value
✅ Desktop appraisals
✅ ANSI standards
✅ Changes in the industry
It was a great opportunity to meet with some of our lending partners and hear from other appraisers!

⭐️Superior Customer Service⭐️

Our focus is always on providing a great experience for our clients and business partners. As silly as it sounds, we strive to be the Chick-fil-A 🐄 of the appraisal business.
This means we’re going to make efforts to meet and exceed your expectations. 💯 We’re going to treat you like we’d want our closest family members to be treated.
🎯 The appraiser will be on-time and dressed professionally when he visits your home. He’s going to treat your house and property with the utmost respect.
🎯 Our office staff is available to happily assist and answer your questions. We’ll maintain strict confidentiality in situations as needed.
We regularly ask for feedback. If you have an unfavorable experience, we want to know about it!

Industry and local market expertise is a top priority!

We’re going above and beyond the continuing education requirements ! 🤓🏆🤓 In 2019, Lane received his SRA membership designation from the Appraisal Institute. The designation required months of studying and passing rigorous exams. Within the Acadiana region, he is 1 of about 6 appraisers that currently hold the designation.
👫 We partner closely with real estate professionals throughout the Acadiana region. Our conversations with agents, brokers, lenders, attorneys, and others give us a good pulse on market conditions.
We ❤️Acadiana! Born and raised here. Proud to call it our home.
💎The appraisal industry is rapidly changing. Lane keeps a close eye on changing regulation and industry requirements. He also serves as the Treasurer for the Louisiana Real Estate Appraiser Coalition. The organization’s works to advocate and provide professional development for appraisers across the state.

Do you know what to look for in a good real estate appraiser?


It may be difficult to know if you have a “good” appraiser. A quick Google search or Facebook post may not tell you much about the appraiser’s knowledge, experience, or quality of work.
Whether or not we are your appraiser, we want you to know the qualities we think are most valuable for an appraiser. Appraisers are sometimes measured by their likelihood to “hit a value” or maybe their low fees. There are other qualities that may not be quite as obvious but even more important.
Some of the largest financial decisions are made based on an appraisal. It’s so important for an appraiser to provide a well-supported, honest, and unbiased value.
✅ Appraisers are bound to follow ethical standards and practices. Your appraiser should hold these values in high regard.
✅Analytical skills are extremally important for the intensive research and analysis poured into a quality appraisal. Your appraiser should pay close attention to details and have the ability to perform critical analysis.
✅Appraisers are required to have market competency to perform the appraisal. You want your appraiser to be an expert in your market.
✅Your appraiser should serve as an independent and unbiased party. Appraisers are sometimes put in tough situations. His/her responsibility is to use factual data to assess the value.
One of the best ways to find out if your appraiser checks these boxes? Ask around or check out online reviews. Word-of-mouth from people who have direct experience is often the best way to know!

💥Check out Acadiana’s latest residential sales data for September💥

Key takeaways:
🔑 Less sales than in August, to be expected due to seasonality
🔑 Average and median sale prices a little lower than last month
🔑 Days on market similar to August & very close to the average last year (Sep 2021)
🔑 Sales-to-list ratio continues to trend slightly downward, still higher than pre-pandemic times
🔑 More than 50% of properties sold for less than their original list price
#acadianaappraisals #realestate #appraiser #homevalues

📣Superior communication one of our key priorities!🔑

It’s important that you know what’s going on during the appraisal process. Lenders, agents, homeowners, and buyers all play a vital role.👫 We try our best to keep everyone informed.
We have a friendly staff available to answer your questions and keep you updated along the way.
Under some circumstances, we are unable to share certain types of information. 🚫 Client confidentiality is very important to us. We will kindly let you know if certain communication cannot be shared.
We can be reached by phone at 337-366-9927, email at, or through Facebook!
#AcadianaAppraisals #appraiser #realestate #acadiana

Pro Tip: PMI Removal

Your home’s current market value could qualify for PMI (private mortgage insurance) removal. Don’t count on your lender reaching out to you! Monthly savings could be real $$$ in your pocket. Hire your own appraiser!!! The lender may opt for the cheapest valuation options that may or may not give the most accurate value.

#acadianaappraisals #appraiser #appraisal #lafayettela #lafayetteparish #iberiaparish #vermilionparish #stlandryparish #stmartinparish #realestate