Amateur AMCs

Dave Towne

Dave Towne

Certified Residential RE Appraiser at Towne Appraisals
AGA, MNAA, Accredited Green Appraiser - Licensed in WA State since 2003.
Dave Towne on e-AppraisersDirectory.com
Dave Towne

Amateur AMCs Misguided Requests

Amateur AMCs Misguided Requests & Unecessary Demands…

Folks,

I’ve written consistently over many years about the misguided request many lenders and AMCs have about “requiring” appraisers to include a copy of their license and E&O binder page in reports.

I have consistently suggested appraisers PUSH BACK whenever you encounter this demand when it is in the list of items to be included, shown in the AMC assignment engagement documents. I’m not the only one doing this.

It is absolutely essential that you review these docs prior to accepting and doing any assignment for anyone, especially the multiple new amateur AMCs that are having significant problems finding willing quality and competent appraisers to do their requested assignments. I define ‘amateur AMCs’ as those who fall on their swords trying to appease the low echelon lenders with virtually any request lenders/investors make, such as the license/E&O issue. Quality, high echelon AMCs don’t have these requests in assignment reporting instructions.

Many of the amateur AMCs operate like this:

amateur AMCs cartoon

Just a few days ago, I had an encounter with such an AMC. When reading over their ‘include in reports’ requirements, I found this, and responded back to them as you see:

“In reading through your reporting requirements, I find this, which I do not do for any client, at an time, for any assignment:

Provide a copy of appraiser’s license & E&O within the report.

Your job as an AMC is to have these docs on file from the appraiser BEFORE awarding any assignment, and then provide those docs to your lender clients… outside of any report… if the client thinks they have to have them.”

Today, I received a reply from that AMC from the person identified as the “Appraisal Coordinator:”

Regarding your concerns of providing a copy of your license and E&O within the report. This is something that the lenders requests; however, it is not required. You may make a note within the report stating that you will not be providing the requested information.

So folks… let me see if I, and you, understand this. On one hand, it IS required; on the other hand it is NOT required. So which is it, really?

In reality, these items are not actually required.

So, appraisers, just quit including license & E&O in reports and if pushed, just decline the assignment. Take these items out of your reports immediately. Eventually – if enough appraisers quit acquiescing to these unnecessary demands – the ‘requirement’ will disappear from appraisal reporting requests.

Otherwise, hope you all have a Happy Christmas season and Merry New Year, and thank you for allowing me into a small segment of your appraisal world with my occasional emailed comments and other info!

Dave Towne

Dave Towne

AGA, MNAA, Accredited Green Appraiser - Licensed in WA State since 2003. Dave Towne on e-AppraisersDirectory.com

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12 Responses

  1. Maurita says:

    Yep! DO NOT include them.  I don’t …never have…  When they send a revision request for these items I simply tell them “They are on file with you, the AMC, send them to lender under separate cover”…  Often they ask me to include a statement in my appraisal…I just say No   I don’t include any statements.    No AMC has dropped me from their panel for saying no.

    I wish more appraiser’s would use the word NO.  Not just for this but all unnecessary requests.  I once had a revision request for items I had already discussed in the appraisal report. They asked me to restate them in an addendum at the beginning of the report….WHAT?.    I said “NO, read the report”.

    Come on folks…..say NO!

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  2. Bob Miller says:

    As almost any Appraiser knows, the true reason for E&O binder attachment is for the lazy bank employee, who then knows how much they could sue me for and most likely get it.

    i do not believe that AMC’s can require appraiser’s to insure their work. I think insurance and the amount you carry is a personal matter, and is no ones business but your own. Becoming a condition of employment, is their choice. This does not mean I will disclose the amount of insurance or the premium I pay. Push comes to pull I will provide the binder number, and the insurance company. No more.

    Attaching a copy of your license, when the number of the license and state issued is on almost all appraisal forms, is stupid.

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    • Tom D says:

      ehh, the 1004 has your name, address, signature, license number & state on it. the state probable has a web site with all that info on it anyway, for anyone to check. and you think hiding your license & e&o will protect you? ok. i always though that it was a good report the would protect you.

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      • Robert Mitchell, SRA says:

        You are clueless.

        Providing your license leaves you exposed to fraud. Have you ever heard of someone copying and illegally using another’s license? Furnish your E&O and you expose yourself to a law suit.

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      • Baggins - troll me Baggins - troll me says:

        Providing ready manipulable xml files to non licensed non accountable persons is the biggest exposure, so what’s a little license copy on top of that? Just watermark it. Now with FNMA CU in place, most clients don’t read reports anymore, they score them. Some amc’s have already begun to go public and export the earnings they’ve yanked, to the ‘business investors’. My client tells me I’m one of the last solo true independent guys they have on panel. Appraisers with the ability to say no are increasingly rare. Think of amc work as deserving an extra hundred or two fee, since they apply additional scrutiny and demand. Time is money but if you charge enough, any client will do just fine. You have to test them out individually. Regain the professional standing. The most volume for lowest fee thing worked for a while, but does not work anymore for most appraisers these days. It’s self defeating because volume never holds up. If completing appraisals was easy, more people would do it. I’m last of 2 guys out of 60 who were in the CR class with me from 2007 or so.

        I’ll bet anyone here a hamburger their top client is not training appraisers, and is also not employing anyone with aspirations to be an appraiser. The most powerful rebuttal I’ve found is to ask people if they’re interested in being an appraiser. Stops the show cold every time, and then up with the fee. I’m not in this job to make friends or pal around with shopping distributors. If they try to shop me I shift to sales mode and reverse upsell instead. Tit for tat. Appraisers who cannot best the ameture distributor phone salesmen have no business judging the credibility of licensed realty agent deals. Shopping for lowest fee and fastest tat is synonymous with seeking the weakest vendor set possible.  aka; see addenda

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  3. Kevin says:

    Dave, I agree. I never include my E&O in my reports.

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  4. Bill Johnson says:

    Our appraisal issues don’t take a holiday.

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  5. Baggins - wake me when the carpetbaggers die. Baggins - wake me when the carpetbaggers die. says:

    USRES: Care to take a 1200 rush order over Christmas? Me: Sure, you’re lucky, first time in 3 years or so I’m actually taking a month off, but heck, why not for a rush xmas spiff.

    Next day: So sorry, order not actually live, cannot assign. Me: Please don’t distribute orders you are not supposed to be distributing yet. What’s your standard minimum fee? USRES: Resnet is god, and we are moving the standard from 300 to 350! Me: I remember 10 years ago when 350 was the absolute minimum USRES would pay, many orders automatically crawled to $550+ and everything was direct assigned.

    Email quote: We work with some of the nations BIGGEST lenders.

    (Yes, she actually capitalized that)

    Me: Bigger lenders represent more valuation risk and capitalizing the word does not make large lenders any more impressive. Set me to vacation for another 3 years until you get the permanent minimum fees not just back to yesterday, but up to the current standard. You cannot fathom the time drain amc’s as a group represent to appraisers. I do not exist as an independent appraiser to save anyone a dollar or a day. I’m not a temporary laborer standing by for side jobs, and I cannot build my business around a question mark.

    Competency analysis; Offering 1,200 up front direct, but only teaser and likely would have gone bait and switch. Assignment agent was spam emailing big fees in anticipation of an order which never actually materialized. Meanwhile nothing is direct but if you’re the teachers pet for the non licensed distributor person, she will call you the ‘go to’ appraiser. All appraisers are substitutable regardless of fee, and national standards are still woefully underpaid at rates less than 20 years ago.

    USRES, competent or not? You’re the quarterback, you make the call. I remember when they hired the 7 additional executives and restructured. Fees did not just dip, they went into free fall, and the fees never returned. Well, I hope those execs are good at doing appraisals themselves, they are in fact, claiming the majority of the expenses for the appraisal. One presumes that companies whom take the majority of the payment, actually do the majority of the work. I personally suspect this is a rare but still occasional happening, where the new assignment person read the assignment ledger wrong. I’ve had RELS pull the same thing on accident. They actually do bill $1,200 for appraisal services, and it’s supposed to be a secret, given the 300 standard appraisers fee demand. Yes, it’s true, that’s where the numbers are at for many of these companies. Now, who’s still following the yes man mantra, where their business method is to get more appraisals done for less cost in record time? Fools rush in.

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  6. Retired Appraiser Retired Appraiser says:

    Merry Christmas to every scumbag AMC owner out there!  It’s unfortunate but even leeches serve a purpose in this world as do bottom feeders.

    I dedicate this song to both. (Sang to the rebel tune “Dixie”)

    SHIFTY

    Oh, I’m glad I left,…this job was rotten
    Fees these days aren’t worth a snot.
    Run away, drive away, fly away from Shifty Land!

    In Shifty Land, where you now dwell in,
    Jobs are auctioned…life is Hell and…
    Run away, drive away, fly away from Shifty Land!

    You’ll soon need lots of Whiskey.  Hurray! Hurray!
    In Shifty Land you’ll take no stand,
    To fight for fees o’er fifty
    Don’t give…away…your fees to Uncle Shifty!
    Or you…will live…your life just like a Gypsy!

     

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  7. Retired Appraiser Retired Appraiser says:

    Now why on earth would Joan Trice be reading (and recommending) countless books on quants and algorithms (the stuff that AVMs & AMCs are made of)? Probably because she holds a partial ownership in both.

    Be sure to order your books through her most recent article so she can also make a buck off of you though affiliate marketing with Amazon. Does this woman eat golden corn flakes so she can see gold in her toilet each morning as well? Talk about a traitor to the profession. 

    I’m still puzzled over how she recently proclaimed to Congress that she holds an SRA designation (yet she no longer holds an appraiser’s license). 

    SRA Claim Here.

    Search For Her Mysterious ACTIVE License Here.

    Finders Fee: 1 Box Of Corn Flakes

    I suppose if you throw enough money at the AI you can keep your designation for life (active or inactive). Otherwise, she is both a traitor and a LIAR.

    My Advice To The Appraisal Buzzard:
    Stop pretending you are a friend to appraisers because you were once one yourself. You made the decision to sell out yet you just can’t resist trying to make money via AMCs, AVMs and appraisers. That model just doesn’t work for appraisers. Find another way to gold plate your bathroom fixtures and leave appraisers in peace. This should be your 2017 New Year’s Resolution Joan.

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    • Bill Johnson says:

      This is the same person who I had a lengthy back and forth with on her site (when you could post comments) about her opinion that her survey met C&R requirements. Although our comments were deleted (by her and team), it was of her opinion that their fee survey was both an independent private sector survey and was of objective third-party information. In fact, she said it was the ONLY independent fee survey that she was aware of. I too question her allegiance, and thus the idea of her data being objective third party.

      Seek the truth.

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    • Jack Of All Trades says:

      Yes retired appraiser that’s the battle axe’s brand of evil…..rotten to the core.

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