Category: E&O

Wells Fargo & Inflated Appraisal Fees: The End of AMCs? 5

The End of AMCs?

Wells Fargo has agreed to a $50 million settlement over inflated appraisal fees. Think about this for a minute….. The people bringing the lawsuit (the “Plaintiffs”) claim that Wells Fargo violated Federal law by charging homeowners more than the amount Wells Fargo paid for Broker’s Price Opinions (“BPOs”) and improperly concealing these “marked-up” charges. So, Wells Fargo was charging customers more for BPO fees on defaulted loans than the actual fees charged by the vendor. Is this any different than the use of an AMC? From the case: “Wells Fargo does not identify any provision in any of the numerous...

Tell Them to Find Some Other Lesser Experienced Appraiser 16

Tell Them to Find Some Other Lesser Experienced Appraiser

Tell them they are NOT needed in the report. The march of many appraisers who blindly comply with AMC & other lender ‘demands’ to INCLUDE YOUR E&O BINDER PAGE and FULL SIZE LICENSE COPY in every report. Inclusion of your E&O Binder in reports is the quickest and easiest way to have your report challenged, and for you to be sued. Why would you want to do that? Inclusion of your license copy is absurd. Your license info is already in every single report you submit, or hadn’t you noticed that tidbit of info? If AMC clerks tell you that...

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Appraisers Shortage? A Personal Story

Very large lender who treats appraisers poorly… I received an email from an AMC I have not worked for before at 2:15 PM. They were looking for an appraiser to complete a 1004 report for a very large lender who treats appraisers poorly. The property is in a suburban/rural area, on 5 acres, about 30 minutes from my office. I responded that I could do it, but not until early NOVEMBER, due to being fully booked until then. I requested the rep let me know if that would work for the AMC, and if so, I would then provide my...

Unintended Use & Misleading Appraisal Reports 13

Unintended Use & Misleading Appraisal Reports

Unintended and Potentially Misleading At what point do we ALL say enough? When they insist on unlocked PDF, XML or ENV formats that facilitate recipients in removing portions of appraisal reports they don’t like? Too late. When they blacklist appraisers for refusing to make post effective date contract analysis changes? When they set the fees we charge? When they change the scope of work after assignments are completed? When they LIE to borrowers about how much the ‘appraisal fee’ is? Now we have several that think THEY own MY professional work product? Like HELL they do! Any, repeat, ANY appraiser...

AMC Vendor Agreement Controversies - Bad, Worst & Ugly AMCs 35

Vendor Agreement Controversies & Worst AMCs

AMC Vendor Agreement Controversies – Bad, Worst & Ugly AMCs And the winner is… According to a recent non-scientific survey conducted by AppraiserNews, the World’s Worst AMC Alive is Clear Capital. Honorable Mention goes to Coester VMS and Streetlinks. And the Worst Vampire AMC title goes to AppraiserLoft which is no longer operational. Excerpt: We’d also like to note the passion with which appraisers made their votes, describing the many ways that these AMCs deserved their titles! One final remark: It is sad that so many appraisers still hesitate to go public with their comments about AMCs, (justifiably) fearing that...

Greed Takes Over With Next Loss of Memory 13

Greed Takeover Coming Soon

Basic greed and institutional memory I am amazed how many times in my lifetime I have seen the past repeat itself. Beginning in the 1970’s, I have witnessed one form of financial meltdown after another, each occurring almost precisely 10 years after the last. I once had a wonderful professor who explained that the seemingly inevitable repetition of the past was based on numerous, very different factors, but with two factors appearing in virtually every case. The two “alpha” factors are (1) basic greed and (2) institutional memory. Basic greed is when one group of people is willing to compromise...

Social Media & USPAP Confidentiality Requirement 35

Think It Through Before You Post!

Appraisers are Professionals, Social media is a fact of life. There are many appraisal industry social media outlets for appraisers to connect. These forums provide a great resource for appraisers to seek advice from other appraisers, voice their opinions on industry related issues, and sometimes just to vent a bit after a rough day. This is where we need to be careful….. We have all read comments on social media outlets that you just have to stop and think to yourself, “I can’t believe someone actually posted this”. Confidentiality is a requirement of the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice....

Appraiser Safety - Stalked by Homeowner 29

Appraiser Safety, Stalked by Homeowner

Personal safety of appraisers I have several issues that focus on PERSONAL SAFETY of appraisers especially female appraisers that I need to address. I had a recent event where a homeowner was not happy with the appraised value of his home. Four weeks after I had turned in the appraisal, the lender, Freedom Mortgage, proceeded to send five sales that were 16 to 29 months old, for my review. I responded via StreetLinks AMC communication log stating these were not within FNMA guidelines. A few weeks later StreetLinks sent me the following: Good afternoon, the lender has ordered a second...

AMC email solicitation asking appraisers to perform "Interior Properties Inspections" for $25-$30 6

Why Would You Jeopardize Everything?

AMC email solicitation asking appraisers to perform “Interior Properties Inspections” for $25-$30 Let me admit to one very important fact… I am old. At least I assume I am since I am over 60. In any event, much of what I know about the cyclical nature of real estate is not based on any scholarly papers I have researched and presented, but rather it is due to the fact that in my professional career I have seen four different downturns in real estate and from that I have gained what is known as real world experience. In other words, I...

AQB Experience Requirements and College Degree Requirements Changes 24

AQB Proposes Alternative to College Degree Requirement

In a long-awaited and highly anticipated announcement, the Appraisers Qualifications Board (AQB) has just released an Exposure Draft (May 18) that indicates it intends to walk back the bachelor’s degree requirement for Certified Residential appraisers and more. The AQB also is proposing significant changes to appraiser experience requirements. An AQB Exposure Draft is issued in anticipation of implementing changes to the Real Property Appraiser Qualification Criteria (Criteria), which is the set of education, experience, and examination requirements for appraisers to achieve a state license or certification. The AQB always sets a comment deadline and is committed to reading and considering...

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