I think bottomline1 was correct in stating that "...McBare's understanding of the appraisal process is simplistic and limited in scope." This is especially true when comparing apples and oranges...
McBare's car appraisal example is OK up to a point, but notice that it's the buyer who wants the appraisal. With real estate, it's the lender that requires the appraisal. When that party enters the process, the dynamics change. Federal and state laws become active. Incentives exist for the parties to push the process to completion. The lender wants to make the loan, but must be protected as to value for his investor. The catch phrase for this is, "the money must flow."
In general, appraisals become more accurate, the more information the appraiser has. The purchase contract certainly can't hurt the appraisal and may actually help. McBare's position may be much ado about nothing. He already has a signed purchase contract, so he's not going to use the appraisal to negotiate the price. The appraisal's only value then is to obtain the mortgage approval or to make McBare feel good.
You fully miss the point of the concept of OBJECTIVE. The point is that the system can easily be gamed, as has been shown in this mortgage crisis repeatedly. The appraisal is SUPPOSE to provide an ACCURATE value for the collateral to insure the mortgage holder has the requisite value in case the loan goes bad.
It should have nothing to do with either make the buyer feel good or "pushing the process to completion". Objective means it STANDS ON ITS OWN MERIT. When an appraisal has outside influence, whether the purchase contract that needs to be met or a mortgage broker that pushed for X number to get a different rate, the process becomes corrupt. That is simple ethics.
It is very funny to watch the kids on the right try to defend that practice, or maybe just have become anesthetized to the insidious corruptness of simple business practices that have become standard operating procedure in a world where enterprise at any cost is acceptable.
My understanding of the process is profoundly more comprehensive than you wish to acknowledge. I just have the additional elements of ethics and old school business practice associated with my understanding. It makes a difference. Of course I don't have to defend a series of practices that have cost taxpayers a Trillion Dollars and devistated two sectors of the US Economy.