A Quick Guide to Property Data Collection 

In the realm of real estate, the foundation of informed decision-making lies in accurate property data. Enter Property Data Collection (PDC) — the systematic process of observing and reporting property characteristics in a fact-based manner. 

Let’s explore the intricacies of PDC, its significance, key requirements, and why it matters in the world of real estate.

What is Property Data Collection (PDC)? 

Fannie Mae defines property data collection as “the act of physically or virtually observing and reporting property characteristics in a fact-based manner.”

It’s important to note that PDC is not an appraisal, as it doesn’t provide an opinion of value. 

Instead, property data collection focuses on gathering objective data that conforms to Fannie Mae’s Uniform Property Dataset standards. This data is then submitted through Fannie Mae’s Property Data API, streamlining the information flow.

Why Property Data Collection Matters

Overall, standardized property data collection and property data reports improve efficiency and increase objectivity and transparency in the process. 

“Fannie Mae’s unique property data collection (PDC) allows financial institutions to manage their risk while potentially waiving the need for a full appraisal,” said Tate Zimmerman, Customer Experience and Media Manager at Akrivis Real Estate Valuation Services.

  • Improved Efficiency: Modernizing the real estate data collection process through technology reduces the burden on appraisers, making the entire system fast and efficient for all parties involved.
  • Consistency and Objectivity: PDC fosters consistency, which ensures that data is more objective and minimizes bias. This enhances the accuracy of property information but also aids in fair decision-making.
  • Transparency: The transparency that comes from a documented process benefits everyone. Whether you’re a buyer, seller, investor, or appraiser, understanding how the data was collected and having easy access to it helps with decision-making.

Key Property Data Collection Requirements

If you’re wondering what type of property information is collected during this process, here are the basics. 

Property Level Data

Part of property data collection includes looking at the property overall to better understand how it fits into the market. The data collector will document: 

  • Property type (single-family, condo, multi-family, etc.) 
  • Address
  • Whether or not the property is currently occupied 

Lot/Site Data

The yard and access to the property can also impact overall value, so an overview of the lot and property site is included. Details include: 

  • Lot size
  • Road ownership & maintenance information
  • Location description and details (What’s the neighborhood and surrounding area like?) 
  • View description and details (What do you see from the front, sides, and back of the house?)  
  • Exterior improvements (fences, sheds, pools, etc.) 
  • Water, sewer, and gas information

Building Data

Key building features and data are also a part of the data collection process, both for single-family homes and shared properties. Details include: 

  • Number of stories
  • Construction type and status
  • Elevators 
  • Year built
  • Foundation type and condition
  • Heating/cooling information 
  • Exterior updates and deficiencies 
  • Mechanical updates (plumbing, electrical, etc.) 
  • Parking and garage space

Level Data

Data collectors will also look at the various above and underground levels to document any significant issues or unique features. They look at:

  • Below-grade features (basements and crawl spaces) 
  • Attics 
  • Access to these areas
  • Whether the levels are finished or unfinished

Room Data

Once they’ve provided an overview of the property, data collectors will go room by room to note features, details, and updates. 

  • List each room on every level
  • Features and fixtures (toilet, sink, etc.) 
  • Interior updates and deficiencies 


Visual documentation and photos are a key part of the data collection process, allowing people to see the space without having to visit. 

  • Photos of all rooms
  • Fireplace
  • Heating and cooling elements
  • Garage
  • Front/rear/side views
  • Outbuildings 
  • Street views

Learn More About Property Data Collection

This is only scratching the surface. If you want to learn more about Fannie Mae property data collection and appraisal modernization, or you want support with the property data collection process, we’re here to help. 

Our network of data collections partners can service your inspection needs nationwide. Contact us to learn more!

Contact Akrivis


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