Maryville, TN asked in Real Estate Law for Tennessee

Q: In a partition suit to settle a property, can one party choose to not abide by an appraised amount and demand more?

My siblings and i are coowners, as beneficiaries in a family trust, of our parents home. I’ve lived here for 4 years caring for our elderly mother. Zillow and trulia show the value as over $600,000 (which it might be had it been updated and maintained over the years). I made it known shortly after her death that I wanted to buy them out and both were agreeable. I obtained an appraisal from a licensed appraiser. The value has come back at $406,000 as the house is 30 years old, hasn’t been maintained since my father passed in 2004, and has never been updated. Since one brother thinks the home is worth far more, he’s threatening to partition to sale out from under me. Would an appraisal not hold more weight than Zillow and trulia which don’t take condition into account? Also it’s 4180 sq ft, but 1600 is a partially finished basement. He’s upset that the appraisal did not give full credit for the entire square footage, rather listed as 2706 living above grade with 67% finished bsmt.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery
  • Knoxville, TN
  • Licensed in Tennessee

A: In a Partition Suit, an appraisal has virtually no relevance. It would only be considered in evaluating the Case, that is whether Partition is viable or not. Much more important is the amount of debt and liens against the property, and the tax appraisal.

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