Appraisers Not Signing Up with These AMCs

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VaCAP Board

Coalition of Appraisers in Virginia at Virginia Coalition of Appraiser Professionals
Coalition of individual appraisers working together to unite, promote and protect the collective interests of all appraisal professionals in Virginia; to promote needed changes in laws, rules, regulations, policies and standards affecting all appraisers in Virginia; to observe and report the actions of regulatory, legislative, oversight, and standards-setting entities of the Commonwealth.
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Appraisal Management Companies Soliciting for Fast and Cheap AppraisersOver the past few weeks VaCAP has been hearing from our members on some of the concerns they have with how appraisal management companies are conducting themselves.

It started when appraisers on the USDA panel received notifications that USDA was no longer ordering appraisals directly and that task has been outsourced. Verdi Consulting and Jones Lang LaSalle have received the contracts from USDA for appraisal origination. Neither of these companies are licensed as an appraisal management company in Virginia and they are using two appraisal management companies as subcontractors; Valligent and Clarocity. Most appraisers we heard from were highly concerned as neither of these companies have a positive reputation among appraisers. Many appraisers we heard from shared they would not be signing up with either of these companies.

Then appraisers reported being solicited for fee and turn times from both Clarocity and Valligent on properties several hours away from their market coverage. Every appraiser is aware any amc asking for a fee and turn time is seeking to find the lowest priced appraisal, regardless of location, complexity or appraiser experience. Searching for appraisers outside of the market area is a huge red flag on how the amc operates.

USDA makes loans in rural areas to low income borrowers. These loans are already a higher risk and fee shopping for the lowest priced appraisers increases that risk unnecessarily. We have to question if this is what USDA anticipated when they outsourced appraisals. AppraisersBlogs published an article on this very topic. Take a look here.

Now Amrock has stepped up there micromanagement and announced starting in 2020 when an appraiser accepts an appraisal assignment, the appraiser must input three dates and times for the borrower/contact to choose. VaCAP heard from a few appraisers, but social media exploded over this announcement. This simply does not work on any level. Not from the appraisers point of view and not from the borrowers point of view. The need for speed and technology at Amrock is actually a hindrance to the appraisal process.

A few things will happen if Amrock follows through with this extremely poor decision. First, appraisers are simply not going to work for Amrock any longer. There will be borrower complaints because the times available do not work for them. Perhaps the most detrimental outcome will be longer turn times and higher fees charged by the appraiser due to the inefficiency of their system.

When appraisers call to schedule an appointment, they talk with the borrower about the property; condition, improvements, needed repairs, etc. We also explain the lender requirements of photographing every room and any specific requirements for FHA of VA. During this process, both the appraiser and borrower have built a trust so it runs more smoothly during the appraisal inspection. Skipping this crucial step will due more harm than good.

Amrock’s policy really begs the question, especially in light of the recently passed California AB-5 law in employee classification requirements, has Amrock crossed the line from an independent contractor to employee status?

Now to top off this insanity see the below solicitation that was forwarded to VaCAP. This new amc has a different approach. You just have to laugh…

Subject: Registration Request from Incenter Appraisal Management, LLC. *PLEASE DO NOT IGNORE*

Hello,

This is an invite from INCENTER APPRAISAL MANAGEMENT, LLC., a newly acquired AMC, formerly Managed Appraisal Service, Inc. to join our panel of appraisers. We have orders in your area from our Trusted Clients. Please register at your earliest convenience to begin receiving new orders from our longtime mortgage partners. Please reply to this e-mail once registration is complete. We look forward to working with you on our new database!

https://mas.myvalutrac.com/register/

As an AMC who values the work of our Appraiser partners, Incenter Appraisal Management, LLC continues to improve/offer benefits for their partners to maintain the best relationships possible.

*Incenter Appraisal Management, LLC is now paying appraisers within 7 business days of appraisal completion dates! Appraisers can also opt in for ACH payments which is our direct deposit option. If interested, please contact us for our ACH Intake form.

Incenter Appraisal Management, LLC also offers perks to their appraisers who qualify:

-How to qualify — Complete at least five appraisals in a 6 month time frame

Perks Available To You:

  • Roadside Assistance: 24/7 365 day a year vehicle towing, winching, fuel delivery, flat tire change, lockout services
  • Trupoint Tax Service: Free & discounted tax preparation by CPA’s
  • Discount Rx Card: RX discounts available at over 60,000 pharmacies
  • Staples: Discounts on all office supplies (printers, cameras, etc.)
  • Discount Shopping & Entertainment: Receive shopping and entertainment discounts from thousands of local and national vendors in 15 shopping categories.

When you qualify, based on the above criteria, you will receive log-in credentials to access the benefits portal.—This will be sent to you at the beginning of the month after you qualify!

If you have any questions. Please call the office at 866-222-6205

Thanks everyone!
Nikki Phanda
nikkita.phanda@incenterms.com
Head of Operations

This invitation was sent to you by Incenter Appraisal Management, LLC (MAS), 2 Village Road, Suite 11, Horsham, Pennsylvania 19044.

Image credit flickr - Elvert Barnes
VaCAP Board

VaCAP Board

Coalition of individual appraisers working together to unite, promote and protect the collective interests of all appraisal professionals in Virginia; to promote needed changes in laws, rules, regulations, policies and standards affecting all appraisers in Virginia; to observe and report the actions of regulatory, legislative, oversight, and standards-setting entities of the Commonwealth.

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15 Responses

  1. Avatar Tired Appraiser says:

    Servicelink has been micromanaging much the same way Amrock is going to for about 2 yrs. It’s called EXOS. They actually set the appointment and then send it to an appraiser who is available for that time slot. That sounds like more of an employee than a subcontractor.

    8
    • Avatar Bryan J. Trenholm says:

      We did some work for Servicelink until EXOS arrived. They were pushy and rude when we removed ourselves from their list. I swear we will never learn.

      5
    • Susan Layne on Facebook Susan Layne on Facebook says:

      A very risky practice going forward in California. I would not accept an assignment where the time is set for me; also, scheduling the appointment is an opportunity to ask questions about the condition etc.

      4
  2. Avatar JW says:

    It’s a shame the predators of AMCs is filtrating the USDA. Dont sign up with them. This is working and will speak volumes that we are independent business owners and professionals in our field. We do not tolerate behavior that otherwise attempts to diminish our professionalism. Stand strong and we will win this battle

    10
  3. Avatar Kimberly DeFilippis says:

    In the hospital. Needed this laugh!

    6
  4. Avatar Angry Appraiser says:

    The underlying message is that politicians have and will continue to reduce our standard of living and ability to earn a wage reflective of our experience and professionalism to a level that will REQUIRE the use of the “perks” they claim to provide just to afford the necessities and small indulgences of life. See(k) the truth.

    5
  5. Avatar E J says:

    I do quite a few USDA direct appraisals here in my rural market and if I remember correctly a year or so ago I had to send USDA something called a blanket appraisal fee form with my fee. So I did, and all orders were sent at $450. I wonder what happened to that agreement and what fee these AMC’s are offering. I’ll never work for Clarocity. Never heard of Amrock.

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  6. Avatar Ralph says:

    Giving 3 times is a complete joke! When I call to schedule I give one day and time, if I leave a mssg, I move on the the next inspection. If I had given 3 options, what happens when that day and time is gone because the next person answered the phone. This will be a complete train wreck. If I’m one of their appraisers I just ignore this BS. They can’t tell you how to run your business!

    5
  7. Avatar Cotton says:

    There is a capital F word I would like to use when describing my interactions with these AMCS. Again people it is your license and signature they are after. Play very hard to get!

    7
  8. Avatar E J says:

    You are right, I’ve been getting request from LRES for years and I’ve never done anything for them because they are all out of my area by 100 miles. Now they want me to sign up for their new “portal”. But I cannot figure out how to unsubscribe for any more emails. I believe they have gone to ClearValue, no thanks!
    I need a larger DELETE button.

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    • Baggins Baggins says:

      If they run their own email management service which is not channeled through a ready to go company, you can simply set them to spam. Their IT people will get little email disposition response notices that in order to comply with something or another and to be able to continue to send mass emails, they’ll need to stop sending you messages since you’ve noted that as spam. The spam button is not just for internal webmail organization. Couple that with a call blocker and accent it by refusing to update your credential and insurance information, never subscribe to the instant update all clients of credentials programs. Eventually they’ll stop soliciting you. Amc’s are nothing short of predatory relentless telemarketers. I would rather have amc’s think I’m out of business than deal with most of them.

      The FNMA white paper on amc effects on appraisal quality indicate roughly 1/2 of all appraisers nationally do not submit through the GSE’s CU portal, and of those half who do, roughly half of them do not accept amc orders (as the CU does identify sourcing through an amc or not). One key take away if appealing to lenders, they cut their vendor exposure in half if they use amc’s. And if a guarantee program is controlling which amc specifically, perhaps cut that in half again if not more.

      Still waiting on an answer if the FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) is applicable to the CU system, and now, the USDA systems as well. FOIA is a broadly used tool to force transparency of government and related institutions which requires them to share a broad range of unique and otherwise unavailable data which may be requested from persons or companies outside of their proprietary information circles. Think of the possibilities. Anyone can file an FOIA and see if it sticks.

      As long as appraisers keep taking the orders. The thing the 25% don’t understand is that if you take any amc work, you’re in that box and you may lose access to the other half of the ml lending community. Lenders whom pay full fee often disregard appraisers with discounted fee schedules. If lenders see you’re willing to take usda work via amc’s, don’t be surprised if they scoot you off of other direct panels and ask the amc’s to solicit you instead. Many lenders use a mix of amc vs direct, sometimes on the fly. They are good at keeping lists separated. If appraisers discount anywhere they are much more likely to lose full fee direct access elsewhere in the future. The old ‘but I negotiate my fees up’ thing is pointless and counter productive in the end.

      If appraisal management companies still do not understand what a fair fee for the majority of all appraisers is, we can’t help them. Or sign up to get played and collude against honest consumer billing. It’s your business decision.

      3
  9. Avatar Dave says:

    I’m still waiting for lawyers to have to use the same system as we appraisers of obtaining business. AMC- Attorney Management Company. The lawyer has to be fast and cheap to get the shotgun blast bid! That would be a hoot to see the lawyer’s squirm like the snakes they are!

    2
    • Avatar Tim Beyrent says:

      RE Cuomo: You left out “Former Head of HUD who turned Appraisers into Home Inspectors.”

      Oh, and Attorneys solicit tax assessment appeals based upon value. Fee typically = a year or two of property tax savings. Yeah try THAT as an Appraiser!

      3
  10. Avatar Bryan J. Trenholm says:

    How about a Title Insurance Management Company? Insurance on the left, insurance on the right, insure over the search you paid for, Fees on the left, fees on the right – It’s like a Jimmy Buffet song (Fins).

    2

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Appraisers Not Signing Up with These AMCs

by VaCAP Board time to read: 3 min