Appraisal and valuation service Vref is introducing a revised and updated online platform offering significantly enhanced functionality, its debut coinciding with the NBAA Convention. In the works for a year, the new system’s foundation leverages 25 years of Vref’s accumulated data, and is “bigger, stronger, [and] faster” than its predecessor, said president Jason Zilberbrand. “We had a clear vision of what we wanted to produce, but we had to clean the data so it could be placed in the new framework,” he said.
The revised platform (no “2.0” or other rebranded designation) aims to improve and accelerate value determination of any single or fleet of aircraft, whether being used by financial companies and lenders, brokerages, insurance companies, operators, aircraft buyers and sellers, or others. “Instead of a range [of values], we’re trying to get to specific numbers,” Zilberbrand said.
Every aircraft model now has specific baseline equipment pegged to year of manufacture, making it much easier to adjust values for a specific aircraft’s options and upgrades. Also, along with wholesale and retail valuations, Vref now reports fair market and scrap value, displayed along with historical residual values, and predicted future values, the latter using data from the company’s annual 15-year residual value forecast introduced last year.
The list of avionics in the system’s database has more than doubled to over 40,000 individual items, with depreciation based on filterable time in service.
Interior condition, long a subjective and imprecise area of appraisal, has been divided into components including soft goods, seats, and wood, with photographs of each defined condition term, practically eliminating subjective ratings; paint condition has been similarly defined.
Engine upgrades can now be easily figured into valuations as well, with aftermarket engines (and depreciation filters) all available for quick selection via dropdown menus.
Damage history valuations have been completely rewritten, though Zilberbrand acknowledges gauging damage’s impact is difficult via online tool. Therefore Vref makes live chat with an appraiser, and submission via writing also available for damage assessment.
The platform, able to incorporate new features going forward, is offered in a three-tiered model. Current subscribers will be automatically switched to Tier 1, the basic service, and can opt for Tier 2 or 3, offering progressively increasing functionality and filtering capabilities. All AOPA members will now have access to Tier 1 tools via the organization’s website, through Vref’s partnership with the pilots' group.