Category: Appraisal

AMCs Property Inspectors Denied Minimum Wage - Class Action Cases 11

Class Action Against AMCs on the Horizon

Property inspectors suing ServiceLink to obtain minimum wage… Peter Christensen wrote another article on LinkedIn about wages being paid by lenders and AMCs. This one should get your attention as it is from Independent Contractors suing an AMC. This will set a precedent and start a chain reaction. In a nut shell, property inspectors are suing ServiceLink for work performed to obtain minimum wage. Yes, you read that correctly, minimum wage. According to the article, property inspectors receive between $3 and $5 for each assignment. The article does not specify the specific service the property inspectors perform, but think bifurcated or...

Smart Exchange Not So Smart - Is Smart Exchange Really a Smart Idea? 64

Is Smart Exchange Really a Smart Idea?

Alamode recently launched Smart Exchange to its users. The idea is appraisers can see what others have stated as property characteristics and transfer that information directly into your report. The system is based on mutual sharing, so if you participate, you will share all your comparable data with everyone else that is using Smart Exchange and you can see their data. The last update from alamode installed the programming and changed the way the side by side screen looks. Now I must make a disclaimer here, I am in the over 50 category and my kids are all grown. It...

FNMA Rural High-needs Appraisal Waiver 18

FNMA Rural High-needs Appraisal Waiver

…which counties in the US qualify for this kind of FNMA rural high-needs appraisal waiver… Appraisers, you may not be affected by this new FNMA waiver process. Then again, if you service certain ‘poverty’ counties in the US, you may. A surprise to me… Kings County, New York [Brooklyn], is one such county. It probably would be in your best interest to examine this blog, and then click on the map link within the article. The map will show which counties in the US qualify for this kind of FNMA rural high-needs appraisal waiver. Once the map opens, you can...

Who Benefits from Hybrid Appraisals & Who Pays the Price? 24

Who Benefits & Who Pays the Price?

Why does a hybrid appraisal work better? What are the benefits? Who benefits? Who pays? A hybrid appraisal, as it has been proposed, separates the field work from the desk work. The assumption is that an appraiser is good at filling out the forms, while another “cheaper faster” person can do the property inspection. Also, we presume that the client would be the one to select the field inspector. For this post, we also assume that the property inspector is a real estate agent. This is the third post considering “hybrid appraisal”. I had intended it to be no more...

Size vs. Value - Finaly...The Truth About Price per Sq.ft. in Valuations 12

Truth About Price per Sq.ft. in Valuations

…has nothing to do with size… This article from realtor.com titled ‘Forget Price Per Square Foot: The More Accurate Ways to Determine Your Home’s Value’ explains why price per square foot is not a good gauge of value. Excerpt: A home’s price per square foot is a common way to quantify its value… Many home shoppers even use it as a determinant for whether or not they’ll even consider touring a home. But that doesn’t mean it’s the most accurate, end-all and be-all way to gauge a home’s value and compare it with other houses. Why? Because all homes are...

Commercial Appraisers Against National Firm - Overtime Class Action 3

Appraiser Overtime Lawsuits Continue

Appraiser Overtime Lawsuits Continue to Hit Banks and AMCs – and Now Commercial Appraisers Against a National Commercial Appraisal Firm In May, I wrote a short piece (posted here) about the legal threat posed to AMCs, appraisal firms and other employers of appraisers in relation to classification of appraisers as exempt from overtime. I included a warning that the threat was spreading to commercial firms. It’s time for an update. In August, another bank – U.S. Bank – was sued for unpaid overtime by a potential class of appraisers. Also named as a defendant to the class action is U.S....

Solidifi Agreement... All Indemnity Clauses Are Not Created Equal... 5

Indemnity Agreements

Solidifi User Agreement… all Indemnity Clauses are not created equal… This is a response to the article that Dave Towne wrote regarding Indemnity Clauses and that they are common in today’s world and appraisers better get used to it. It is also true that all Indemnity Clauses are not created equal and the devil is in the details. This topic came up because of the agreement that Solidifi requires that all appraisers that receive assignments from them must agree to. Let’s delve into the Indemnity Clause which is in that agreement. First the agreement is between Solidifi and the appraiser...

Stand Your Ground in Protecting Your Business! 41

Stand Your Ground!

Many states have laws in place that allow citizens to protect themselves and their property without prosecution. In the appraisal profession, you must also stand your ground to protect their business. Social Media is a quick and easy way to communicate. Recently there have been numerous appraisers reaching out and sharing trouble getting paid from some Appraisal Management Companies. Some are claiming they are long time clients with no issues in the past. This is wake up call for all appraisers to pay attention to the economic and financial side of your business. Volume is slowing as school starts and the...

How To Charge Cancellation Fees - 'We Cancelled, Didn’t the Bank Tell You?' 8

How To Charge Cancellation Fees

A-Clients who have no qualms paying cancellation fees… You’ve been driving for more than an hour and a half to your appraisal appointment. So, you decide to call the client and let them know you’re almost there – only for you to get told, ‘We cancelled, didn’t the bank tell you?’ For those involved in real estate appraisal, this is an all too common experience. The flip side is that they get just as angry when the bank cancels and we don’t call them to inform them. So let me share some tips with you on how to effectively deal...

Indemnity Clauses... Either Sign, or Get Put Out to Pasture - Appraisers Blogs 8

Indemnity Clauses – Redux

It’s been an interesting ride down the fearfulness side of many appraisers since last week’s essay I wrote about Indemnity Clauses. But I’ve also received praise from some of the best well-known people in this industry who understood the position I took, and complemented me for presenting the info. That means far more than the diatribes I get from folks who shake in their boots and don’t bother to fully read what is presented. As I wrote to someone last week, what I should have included in my essay, and will do so now is that if you can’t (or...

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