In short no, but in certain circumstances, say maybe 10% to 20% of the time they could be.  From a market solvency standpoint appraisals are hugely important to maintaining the stability of the secondary and broader mortgage market.  However on an individual level it represents an opportunity to save money.  In almost 30 years I don’t recall ever having a buyer I was representing have a low appraisal on a resale transaction (though I have on the listing side).  Your protection against paying too much is having a top broker looking out for your interests and negotiating on your behalf, not the appraisal.  So if you are putting 20% down or more or other circumstances apply we might be able to save you hundreds of dollars on the purchase side.  Here’s a good article on the topic and as always feel free to call with any questions.