Author: Michael Ford

Titanic market value big data 9

Market Value in the Age of Big Data Infallibility

“Practically” unsinkable! This isn’t a topic I generally spend a lot of time on. Partly because I am ‘uneducated’ (sans college degree) and partly because it bores people to death. Despite this I ask you to bear with me. It all started while I was listening to my favorite local radio stock market gurus on the way to wash my car. An expert from the firm of Dewey Fleecem & Howe (DF&H), or some such firm, was explaining the current stock market instability in a historical context. Since our inception as a nation, DF&H reports that we have had 45...

First American Financial and ACI software 13

Software Provider Conflict of Interest(s)?

ACI software & “restricted appraisals” that suffer from schizophrenia… It’s been awhile since I reviewed or researched influences affecting products offered by appraisal software providers. It’s hardly been a number one priority lately. However, I just noticed something I’ve missed for I can’t even begin to guess at how long. Like many appraisers, I use a variety of software providers. Some do some things better than others, or easier. It’s usually been a matter of preference. I started out back in the 1980’s with Formfil PC+, back on my old DOS based system. It was a decent appraisal software. Pretty...

Porter Ranch Environmental Issues 5

Environmental Issues Notice to Appraisers

Response to LRES email concerning appraiser’s responsibility regarding environmental issues Fellow Appraisers, Have you asked yourself WHY a few more of the larger regional AMCs are joining organizations like REVAA? In my opinion, it is because they and their clients (usually GSE lenders) KNOW that they are not truly compliant with Dodd-Frank’s C&R requirement. Despite disclaimers or advisories like this, they also know that the bulk of their work products are ‘probably not compliant’ with USPAP. Notices like this don’t normally get set out until ‘after the fact’ issues arise. REVAA recently helped coerce the State of Virginia (through threat...

Board Member Says Squeaky Wheel Gets the Grease 2

Board Member Says ‘Squeaky Wheel Gets the Grease’

Board Members reported a shortage of individual appraisers offering suggestions, complaints and concerns… Legitimate ‘complaints’ should never be referred to as whining by any professional in my opinion. To do so diminishes the importance of the concerns being addressed. I attended the Las Vegas Public Hearing of the The Appraisal Foundation (TAF) / Appraisal Practices Board (APB) last Friday. No Appraisers Guild or member funds were used in any way for this. There was lots of good information. Board Members reported that there really is a shortage of individual appraisers offering suggestions, complaints and concerns to them as a Board,...

Computer Generated Value vs Human Brain 1

Computer Generated Value vs Human Brain

Around 1992, representatives of LSI (long before they became completely useless as an AMC) visited us in California to discuss some way to involve automation (as in AVMs) to eliminate appraisals. When I pointed out that they had JUST THANKED me for saving them from a quarter of a million dollars over valuation as a result of pressure from one of their very influential customers, and that the very same issue had arisen from that customers misapplication of data AND their potential misinterpretation of that data, they understood the connection. A KNOWLEDGEABLE human appraiser was required to resolve the difference....

Second appraisal controversy - argument 11

Second Appraisal Controversy

On reading a recent post about agents telling their clients to just order a second appraisal when the values came in ‘low’, I’m reminded of an old saying that both my parents used to frequently address toward me, “People who live in glass houses, shouldn’t be throwing stones.” I had no idea what they were talking about since when growing up I’m CERTAIN that ALL of my criticisms were well founded and deserved by those they were directed to. Teachers, government officials, world politicians, teachers, general authority figures, friends, enemies, and did I mention teachers? Basically most of the entire...

Reality check for appraisers 6

A Reality Check for Appraisers

I am not selling road-apples to my fellow appraisers… Appraisers as a group DO NOT PAY ATTENTION to what is going on within the profession OR seemingly unrelated areas that affect the profession. FNMA & Freddie ALREADY HAVE authority to fund loans without appraisals. This is in anticipation of an appraiser shortage. AI has appointed itself the ‘voice of all appraisers’ in America. They actually made the statement at the California TAF meeting in June that they speak for all appraisers interests AND that they put those interests of the entire profession above their own. (source-live meeting; TAF/ASB Redondo Beach...

Stop the Housing Tax for Transportation -Taxing us out of our homes - Flickr - Riley Kaminer 2

Stop the Housing Tax for Transportation

Hidden tax on homeowners The California Association of Realtors® in conjunction with the National Association of Realtors® has published a widespread “Call to Action”, Stop Congress From Taking Money From Future Homeowners. I have already contacted my Congress Member and received a reply. In a nutshell, the bill being discussed is a hidden tax on homeowners. Whether on a refinance or on a new purchase, anyone with a mortgage of about $400,000 could expect to pay an additional $8,000 for federal transportation infrastructure funding through an add on mortgage tax included in their monthly payment! For decades the Federal Highway...

A Contrary Response to The Future of Valuation - Imagecredit Flickr - Simon Cunningham 6

A Contrary Response to The Future of Valuation

Recently an article appeared in WorkingRE about the Future of Valuation. The author is the President of a large and highly respected Appraiser  Peer and Educational Organization.  My own contrary response was either too lengthy, or deemed too critical of a big advertiser for publication in WorkingRE. I thank the hosts of this blog for granting the space. My concern with the author’s views starts with the description of our Real Estate Appraisal profession as ‘valuation.’ The concern is more than mere quibbling over semantics. Valuation is the phrase preferred by the Business Valuation community. They have long been dominated...

Free Enterprise an Appraisal Myth 40

Free Enterprise an Appraisal Myth?

Is THAT free enterprise? I’m surprised anyone in the business today sees any minimum pricing proposal as being anti-free enterprise. Contrary to popular belief we have not had free enterprise in the GSE appraisal process since HVCC first reared its ugly head. AMCs ‘telling’ us to pick a number from $250 to $350, or that ‘THEY pay’ $325 per 1004 is NOT free enterprise. I’m an old timer (1986) that was brought up on what used to be AIREA (now the AI) & SREA (now gone) positions that free enterprise and the Sherman Anti-Trust Act prohibited us from ‘even discussing’...

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