A summary of who developed this system, why it was developed and where our data comes from seems appropriate.After working commercial real estate markets we covered since 1985 there were few villages, towns, township or counties we had not collected data from to perform USPAP compliant appraisals. This website was built by vested appraisers, hands on valuation experts who hold some of the highest credentials in the industry. We have been researching and verifying data with brokers, appraisers and public records years before most had internet access or published book sources for commercial property sales. This site has taken our expert knowledge in an effort to develop one of the best commercial MLS systems on the market. We have completed the state of Indiana but will be adding the states of Illinois and Michigan soon. Thereafter, further expansion is possible.
Within our system we have added a section on each comparable for users to make comments on the data. This allows users to place additional information to the comparable in an effort to make our data stronger and more credible. Feel free to place any useful information you believe would help others. It would be most helpful to those following.
We verify the property type, sales price; date of closing, condition of sale, financing terms, parcel index number, sales document number, grantor, grantee, closing attorney and land size through sales disclosures. These are signed by the buyer and seller and the closing attorney or preparer. Within every sales disclosure it clearly states
"Under penalties of perjury, I hereby certify that this Sales Disclosure, to the best of my knowledge and belief, is true, correct and complete as required by law, and is prepared in accordance with IC 6-1.1-5.5, "Real Property Sales Disclosure Act".
A copy of the act can be found here; http://www.in.gov/legislative/ic/2010/title6/ar1.1/ch5.5.html.
These documents are admissible evidence in court. Anyone who intentionally omits or falsifies any information required to be provided in the sales disclosure form;commits a Class C felony.With that said, people still make mistakes. Generally if it is an error of omission (meaning unintentional), most people will quickly own up. However, if you have all three people collaborating in fraud most likely they will stick to the story until the end.Today, with the chance of facing prison, these collusions are becoming rarer.
With that said, we always recommend verifying everything. If the buyer, seller or closing attorneys' phone number was on the sales disclosure it will be in our data base. If not the system generally has their name and address. Thereafter it is fairly easy to locate a phone number. We urge all data be confirmed. People make errors and it is best practice to speak with someone involved with the transaction. Our system is a very good source for leads and we have found a large majority of it completely accurate.
The physical description of the property comes from assessor records filed with the state. As most professionals working in the commercial real estate industry know there are some very good and some very bad assessors. With that said we believe most assessors are hard-working and do their best to provide accurate data. The majority of assessors know commercial properties are especially prone to legal assessment challenges(as compared to residential real estate), so many try hard to be as accurate as possible. Does this mean data is always accurate? Of course it does not. However, in today's environment it is fairly easy to check physical details on improved properties. We highly recommend any comparable used be visited by the appraiser, broker or other users of the data. There are numerous software programs that have measurement keys that are fairly accurate, so building sizes are relatively easily confirmed. One we recommend is Google Earth Pro (this also provides a number of other extremely useful features to commercial real estate professionals). The annual subscription is well worth its price if you work a lot in the industry. Further, most users can look at a property and tell if many of the physical details provided on the property record card are within the realms of reason.