Author: Michael Ford

BPO Outsourced to India Replacing Appraisals 27

BPOs ‘Made in India’

$10 a pop ‘Made in India’ BPO… When saying you’re 'sari' just won’t do. The Blackstone Group is nothing short of legendary. To say it is a 'Big Deal' is an understatement squared. A little background from their website. “Who We Are Our investments are designed to preserve and grow our limited partners’ capital, provide financial security for millions of retirees, sovereign wealth funds, and other institutional and individual investors, and contribute to overall economic growth.” An honorable & worthy objective by any measure. Helping retirees on fixed income, little old ladies, grandmothers and mothers, albeit wealthy ones I’d guess. Sovereign...

Reconsideration of Value Requests & Undue Influence on Appraisers 20

Reconsideration of Value Requests

Open invitation for spurious reconsideration requests… No thank you. I just checked your website and glanced at your “clients” tab, Reconsideration request form. It pretty well negates all the puffed up hyperbole in your email invitation. It is people like you that are the problem, not solutions. Do you think a one of two items drop down menu is an adequate reason for asking an appraiser to reconsider their value? Do you not see a need to request a full and thorough explanation as to why your clients might be asking for a reconsideration? At a minimum didn’t you feel...

Professionals With No Appraisal Experience Cornering The Hybrid Market 6

New Hybrid Desktop Hucksters

What could lure these successful 'professionals' from their chosen careers? Fellow appraisers, I just received an advertisement for a company that wants to pay ‘me’ $50.00 an hour to do desktop appraisals. Actually, probably not me, because they prefer a degree. Now, my routine hourly rate for complex appraisal assignments is $150 ($500 for EW and something variable in between for pretty much everything else). So they are asking me to take a cut of 2/3… assuming I could meet their degree requirement “preference”. It got me thinking. I cannot always command my hourly rate for 8 hours a day,...

Experience Requirements Reduced, College Degree Still Required for CG 18

Experience Requirements Reduced

Sometimes the only substitute for experience, …is more experience. Dear Mr. Traynor: The American Guild of Appraisers has long been on record in opposition to the original requirement for a college degree to become any level of real estate appraiser. This was never a requirement of Congress at all, but rather one developed by the AQB over time. While we are pleased AQB has abandoned the college degree at the licensed and residential certification levels, we are disappointed to see it is still being proposed at the general certified level. We repeat for the record; there is nothing involved in...

Order Takers? AQB Advocating For All The New Garbage Products 18

Careless Order Takers?

Appraisers were simply order takers… A friend that refers a lot of commercial work to me forwarded the following communications from an AMC. He’s been telling to ‘go away’ for some time now. This time he played along to see exactly what it is they are hustling. I’ve redacted my friends name and eliminated excessive line spacing and repetitive email signatures. I also bold highlighted references to John Brenan & AQB communications. Otherwise it’s as copied from my email. We’ve all heard enough about hybrids so you can either read the copied emails or skip them. It’s the article from...

Valuation Partners & Schizophrenic AMCs vs. Appraisal Professionalism 20

FTC & REVP vs LREAB Bombshell

Like many other appraisers I received a copy of paperwork filed in conjunction with the Louisiana Real Estate Appraisers Board / FTC and Real Estate Valuation Partners (REVP) aka Valuation Partners. (Thank you VaCAP!) To me it’s a bombshell, but before I go into the story of who did what to whom, and for how much let’s start off by asking all readers to click this link to see who the players are. Even if you read the article elsewhere please read the following link. Got it? Great. Just so we are clear, one of the Chief players appears to...

Tristar Alleging Appraiser Shortage, AGA Opposes Appraisal Waivers 10

AGA Opposes Appraisal Waivers

Letter outlining the American Guild of Appraisers position in the national precedent setting matter of granting appraisal waivers for TriStar Bank in Dickson County TN. …this type of waiver is an outright invitation for fraud… December 8, 2017 RE: Tristar Bank, Dickson, Tennessee-Appraiser Waivers Request 11/20/2017 Dear R. Park The American Guild of Appraisers opposes the above referenced appraisal waiver request on behalf of our appraisal members and our more than 13 million taxpayers, consumer members of our parent unions. Tristar bank cites an absence of certified general real estate appraisers in their home office county (Dickson) as the basis...

Hacked! Are We to Rely on FNMA to Keep Our Private Tax Info Protected? 12

Is Your Private Tax Info Protected?

Even the Pentagon gets hacked! Do Consumers really KNOW how their loan application data is being handled? Having worked for IRS, I know it is against the law for any government employee to divulge specific (identifiable) taxpayer information without exceptional effort to get advance approval. There is no legal way for that personally identifiable taxpayer information to get into the public domain without the taxpayers specific written permission for it. Even inside IRS, we were required to protect the identification of the taxpayer in any case related situational discussions where we sought each others advice. We could talk about the...

Markets & Big Data Fool Proved Forecasting 10

I Got It Wrong…

“…after forty years of studying markets, I got it wrong…” As time goes on, the one thing that appears to be both a societal and financial markets constant, is our inability to learn from our past mistakes. Late, a couple of nights ago (10/23/17), while channel surfing, I happened on an economics program intended to explain the financial crisis of 2008. My apologies for referring to a programming without its name or network. Instead, I had to consider the person who was the primary focal point of the program: Hyman Minsky (see link to The Economist here). Before reading the...

Palm Beach AMC Solicitation Blast & Appraiser's Response 14

Appraiser’s Response to Palm Beach AMC

Palm Beach AMC, thank you for your blind/bulk solicitation. Just out of curiosity, why do you think I would share that kind of personal & confidential professional information with a firm I never heard of? I don’t even know what kind of fee schedule you are used to paying? You offer no references of any kind, yet you expect I will extend credit to you for thirty days? Without exception, THAT means that you will use MY fee to pay YOUR overhead for thirty days before you even consider sending MY fee to me. Firms that do not segregate appraiser...

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