FAQ

How are properties analyzed in CROSSROADS?

CROSSROADS is a professional valuation tool that matches your subject property to comparison properties in a robust database to produce a valuation. The CROSSROADS database has the advantage of being created by individuals knowledgeable about the region, which increases the quality of the comparisons. Each property available for comparison has been cataloged at the time of its sale using residential appraisal methods (including assigning a Quality and Condition rating). The properties available for comparison are further organized into neighborhoods. Contributory land value and secondary amenities are extracted to leave a base value for the living area. This allows for apples-to-apples comparisons with a matched subject property and increases the supportability of the valuation. This means that the information is detailed, always up-to-date, instantly available, and representative of current market trends.

How does CROSSROADS reduce bias?

Use of CROSSROADS may reduce bias in determining a home valuation. Since the comparable properties are analyzed and cataloged prior to being associated with any valuation, the possibility of bias for the subject property is reduced. Additionally, the valuation produced by CROSSROADS software algorithms removes the human component responsible for bias from the comparable sales when the subject is known. Subject bias remains a possibility in that a variety of Quality and Condition choices are available that could be abused by someone with bias. To monitor for bias, CROSSROADS is available to different users participating in a real estate transaction, allowing a quick and supported opportunity for oversight of bias. The effect of locational differences may be also evaluated.

How can CROSSROADS valuations be used?

There are a variety of uses for CROSSROADS applications depending on the user role:

Banks/Mortgage Lenders

Home equity lending and renewals

Compare or validate appraisal from another source

Call note renewals

Refinance decisions-status of PMI

Portfolio monitoring and management

Due diligence (e.g. audit or quality control)

Risk monitoring (e.g. assess market trends)

Evaluate risk for purchase financing

Understand market trends and influences

Identify support properties

Track value of specific properties over time

Remote option for valuation (pandemic)

Appraisal waivers

Real Estate Agents

Assist setting sell price

Evaluate asking price

Understand market trends

Anticipate appraisal value

Determine effect of repairs

Appraisers

Support Opinion of Value

Amenity adjustments

Time adjustments

Determine scope of work

Aid in comparable property selection

What information do I need to value a property in CROSSROADS?

You will need the following subject property information to run a valuation in CROSSROADS:

Street address and zip code

Year built

Living area square footage (including above and below grade)

Note that there are only a few pieces of information required for property valuation, but the more you know about your subject, the better the valuation will be. The following entries are optional in CROSSROADS but do enhance the accuracy of the valuation:

Number of garage bays

Owned photovoltaic (PV) system (Watts)

Pool

View Grade

Auxiliary Living Area square footage

Shop square footage

Other amenities (sport court, enhanced patio, boat docks, etc.)

As you enter the property information, you will choose:

Neighborhood (auto-populates for properties already in the database)

Quality rating (may auto-populate)

Condition rating (may auto-populate)

Land Value

Check out our video guide for a  CROSSROADS Test Drive (16 min).
You may find these guides helpful as you use CROSSROADS:

Where can I find the information needed to value a property in CROSSROADS?

Information about your subject can be found in MLS listings, appraisal reports, personal inspection and measurement, county records and surveys, or any other source you deem reliable.

How do I choose a Quality or Condition rating?

The following videos and written guide are meant to help you learn to choose a quality and condition rating. A little practice goes a long way in gaining confidence to choose a rating. You may choose to experiment with different Quality or Condition ratings for the same property if you would like to see how the values are affected.

How do I choose a Land Value?

Once you have entered your information in the Property Information and Valuation Criteria boxes, adjust the filters to arrive at the number of comparable sales you want. The comparison sales are shown on the map, each one with a red balloon icon. Click on the red balloon icons to see characteristics of that comparable property.

This example shows a Land Value of $20000 for 601 Ash Street, one of the comparable properties. Look at the other land values of the comparable properties by clicking on the red balloons. This will allow you to see what is typical for land values in that area. With this information, you can choose a land value to enter in the Property Details/Adjustments box for your subject property.

How do I choose a View Grade?

A view grade is an opinion of how the market will react to a home’s view. Recognize that there may be a spectrum of reactions for the same view, but the view grade here is meant to represent a judgment of how the market in your area would typically value your subject’s view. The default in CROSSROADS is Grade 0 View, which means no additional value related to the view.

If the view from your subject property is BETTER than a Grade 0 View, choose one of the following:

Grade 1 is a beneficial view (such as a partial mountain view; the market would pay a little more for that view)

Grade 2 is a remarkable view (such as a full mountain view, the market would pay more for the view)

Grade 3 is a spectacular view (such as a full mountain view and including the valley below; the market would definitely recognize the view as an asset)

Why does the CROSSROADS Valuation Report give a range of values? How do I choose?

The range of valuation numbers is a statistical representation of the valuation possibilities based on the subject property data. Typically, the lower property values are from the lower end of the quality and condition selection. Reviewing the Quality and Condition Videos may help to identify factors that affect whether the lower, mid, or upper range of values best fits the subject property. Two examples may be helpful:

A “low” Q3 property would be nearing a Q4 rating; consider the lower end of the valuation range returned for that property.

A “high” C5 property would be nearing a C4 rating; consider the upper end of the valuation range returned for that property.

How does CROSSROADS report the credibility of a valuation?

Confidence factors are applied to each valuation in CROSSROADS to ensure that the valuation output meets a standard of reliability. Two values should be checked on the Reference Field Table to ensure that your valuation is supported and credible: The Results Correlation Confidence Factor and the Range of Value Variance. The table below shows how to assess the reliability of the CROSSROADS Valuation:

Results Correlation Factor

Range of Value Variance

Value Credibility

Above 0.5 (max is 1.0)

Less than 10%

Valuation is well supported and credible; confidence in the valuation is high

Between 0.1 and 0.5

10-15%

Additional consideration to filters for comparison properties should be applied

Below 0.1

Greater than 15%

Valuation is below threshold of integrity; an alternative approach should be considered

Results Correlation Factor

Above 0.5 (max is 1.0)

Range of Valuable Variance

Less than 10%

Value of Credibility

Valuation is well supported and credible; confidence in the valuation is high

Results Correlation Factor

Between 0.1 and 0.5

Range of Valuable Variance

10-15%

Value of Credibility

Additional consideration to filters for comparison properties should be applied

Results Correlation Factor

Below 0.1

Range of Valuable Variance

Greater than 15%

Value of Credibility

Valuation is below threshold of integrity; an alternative approach should be considered

The Results Correlation Factor and the Range of Value Variance are two separate calculations meant to indicate a level of confidence in the valuation. If both numbers conform to the desired range, the valuation confidence is high. If one conforms and the other does not, additional examination is needed to evaluate the reliability of the property valuation.

The Above Grade GLA Range entered in the Valuation Criteria box affects the confidence in the valuation. Small margins of unbracketed GLA will generally produce results that are credible, but the more severe the unbracketed range the more unreliable the results could be. 

In some cases there is not enough information in the CROSSROADS database to return a supported valuation. This is less likely when the database is “mature,” meaning years of sales data have been captured. However, there may be unusual or extreme circumstances associated with a subject property that cause limitations on the comparison data available. When the reliability of the valuation drops below a threshold of integrity, the Results Correlation Confidence Factor in the Reference Field table will be below 0.1 and the Range of Value Variance is greater than 15%. An alternative approach should be considered.

What is the difference between a CROSSROADS valuation and an appraisal?

An appraisal is a supportable and defensible opinion of value produced by a licensed appraiser who has gathered information about the property and evaluated recent sales of comparison properties in the area. An appraisal typically adheres to USPAP standards and produces a detailed report of the property findings and an explanation of the methods used to support the value of the property and the effect of market influences.

CROSSROADS is an Interactive Valuation Model (IVM) which derives home values by using a software algorithm to compare the characteristics of your subject property to properties in the CROSSROADS database. The properties contained in the database have been organized and characterized using methods very similar to those used by an appraiser. CROSSROADS is capable of analyzing many more data points than a human being. For this reason, identification of comparable properties by CROSSROADS may be greatly enhanced. A CROSSROADS valuation may even be used by a licensed appraiser to help satisfy the valuation component of an appraisal.

CROSSROADS may be used as a comparison tool to confirm the value of an appraised property. The cost of using CROSSROADS is low and very little time is needed to generate a value. Additionally, CROSSROADS has some unique features that may be useful in certain circumstances:

Reduction of bias

Allows for extraction of individual amenities to determine value contribution

Ability to adjust time of comparison sales

Ability to adjust location of comparison sales

Monitor land improvement ratios

How is CROSSROADS different than an AVM?

Learn how CROSSROADS is different than an AVM by downloading the PDF below:

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Learn How Crossroads is Different than an AVM

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Where is Crossroads available for use?

Click here to see where the Crossroads database is currently available, and what areas are coming soon.

Establishing a Crossroads database is a detailed process. It takes several months to curate a “seasoned” database with enough properties and analysis to reliably support valuations. We care about the quality of the valuations, which is why we undertake this process deliberately and with care. Check back often, as our Service Areas are expanding.