FTC vs Corelogic
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…how the agreement between CoreLogic and the FTC from 2014 impacts appraisers…
The FTC vs CoreLogic: Why it is important to Appraisers
Some appraisers have reached out to VaCAP asking how the agreement between CoreLogic and the FTC from 2014 impacts appraisers. VaCAP wants to highlight the case and provide some key points of reference.
The agreement revolves around the purchase of DataQuick by its competitor CoreLogic in 2014. The FTC at that time allowed the transaction with some parameters in which CoreLogic agreed to. See the analysis of the agreement here. A summary of the parameters are below:
- CoreLogic agreed to settle the matter by divesting assets to RealtyTrac so RealtyTrac could essentially take over the competition in the market from DataQuick.
- CoreLogic was to provide RealtyTrac with the data DataQuick was providing to its customers so there would be adequate competition in the market.
- RealtyTrac, after two years, discovered CoreLogic was not providing all the data as required by the agreement, thus harming RealtyTrac’s ability to compete with CoreLogic.
- CoreLogic eventually provided some of the missing data, but not all.
- CoreLogic failed to provide all the required support to RealtyTrac as dictated by the order.
The FTC has proposed a modified agreement with CoreLogic, basically extending the time frame three years and requiring the disclosure of specific actions that will be taken to ensure compliance. The FTC wants public comments on if it should approve the modified agreement. See the proposed modified agreement in section V on page 12580 of the Federal Register here.
Consumers benefit from an open and competitive market. In the appraisal profession, CoreLogic is in control of so many of the resources appraisers rely on, so the question becomes is it open and competitive market? Some examples of CoreLogics’ businesses in the appraisal profession are:
- Matrix MLS
- Realist Tax
- ACI Software
- Appraisal Port (FNC)
- Appraisal Scope
- Mercury Network
- Data Courier
- Marshall and Swift
- RELS (now CoreLogic w/ staff appraisers)
- Columbia Institute
In March 2017, VaCAP published an article by our guest author Ace Appraiser and it went nationwide through AppraisersBlogs and on Facebook. The article highlighted how it was difficult for an appraiser to complete an appraisal without the use of a CoreLogic product. See the article here.
Here is where appraisers have an opportunity. CoreLogic has already demonstrated they did not fulfil their agreement on the purchase of DataQuick to maintain competition in the market. By commenting to the FTC, you, the appraiser, have the opportunity to express your opinions and concerns directly to the FTC in an open and official capacity. The comments should address the proposed modified agreement, however, there is nothing preventing you from referencing examples and analogies from your day to day activities as an appraiser. These comments will be read by the FTC.
This is an opportunity that we should not let pass by. The public comment period ends April 16th.
To place your comments with the FTC, click here.