Payment Trouble – Another AMC Failing?
If you don’t demand payment, you work for free.
I learned from two different appraisers, that an AMC/Appraiser Company may be on the verge of failing. The AMC is based here in Washington State not far from Seattle. It has 4 initials in its name. First initial starts with “W”.
This company operates as an Appraiser Company with W-2 employee staff appraisers, and as an AMC with vendor appraisers in those areas where their staff appraisers don’t work.
The situation came to light today in an email sent out to their appraisers. They admitted they do not have the resources presently to fully pay their appraisers, and asked them if they would consider converting the non-paid amounts to ‘company stock shares.’
Here’s a portion of the message (I have added the ###’s):
“What we are purposing, is to transfer a portion of W### company stock to each appraiser in exchange for the balance W### shows you have invoiced as of 2/8/15. This would mean that you would become a part owner in W### with dividends and decision making capabilities moving forward. The only way we will be able to make this happen and ensure that W### lives on and continues to be fully appraiser owned & operated, we must get all of our appraisers’ with outstanding balances to agree.”
This, of course, is an incredibly bad idea for the appraiser, but good for the company who still probably will fail in the long run. I would strongly urge any appraiser caught up in this mess to demand payment now. Cancel any pending assignments. And delay finishing any reports for properties already inspected. You might also want to call the Lender directly, ask for the manager of the appraisal ordering department, and tell that person about this.
Secondly, as an AMC, the company is licensed in WA State and under our law, they are REQUIRED to pay appraisers for submitted reports within 45 days of receiving the report. There are procedures in place to derive payment from their $100,000 bond, but the appraiser has to contact the regulatory agency first. To save you time, here’s the phone number: (360) 664-6504
Those W-2 staff appraisers unfortunately don’t fall under that requirement (as far as I know), and basically are twisting in the wind at the moment.
I hate to say this, but this does not look good for appraisers who have outstanding unpaid balances for completed submitted reports.
Also, I hate to rag on my peers, but to be frank, it’s appraisers’ own fault for not monitoring their accounts receivables closely, and cutting off non-paying clients (like this one) long before the balance due becomes excessive.
When appraisers don’t demand that companies like this operate properly, the appraisers take it on the chin (and elsewhere)… time after time. If you don’t demand payment, you work for free. “FREE” doesn’t buy any top ramen, or the filet mignon you love on the grill a few times a year.
PAY ATTENTION TO YOUR ACCOUNTS RECEIVABLES.