Tagged: MLS

Alternative Evaluations... Good or Bad 7

Alternative Evaluations… Good or Bad

All of these "alternative evaluations" are an attempt to reduce the fee of the appraiser… All this talk about alternatives to a full appraisal needs some common business sense added to the conversation. At the end of these comments I will include some of my background and you can make your decision if you think I am qualified to put my 2 cents in this discussion. I have said this before and I will say it again, the lenders (AMC included) just want an Appraisers signature and their E&O insurance with a value and they want it as cheap as...

Third Party Services Prohibited - Prohibition is Back! 24

Prohibition is Back!

AMC strictly prohibits the use of third party services. A recent review of an engagement letter from a large national appraisal management company revealed something pretty peculiar… “An appraiser is prohibited from using any third party services.“ Wait, What? No third party services? I am no attorney, and certainly do not know all the aspects of law, but it seems that the definition of third party services is pretty self-explanatory. To be sure I am not mistaken; I researched the definition of third party. FreeDictionary.com: “A person who is not a party to a contract or a transaction, but has...

Market conditions analysis 2

What Do You Suppose Might Have Caused This?

In my area, the Market Conditions data is basically worthless. Folks, One of the data analysis aspects I do in all reports is research sales trends of comparable properties, using MLS data, and making a graph to show report readers the actual market activity that has occurred over a long real estate cycle…usually 4-5 years back from the Effective Date. I use this to supplement, but not replace, the cruddy Market Conditions form, which poorly accounts for only 12 months of activity. In my area, the Market Conditions data is basically worthless. I’m sharing this because in the 8 years...

Agents Blacklisting Appraisers 46

No I Won’t Work With This Appraiser

How much power do agents have over the appraisal process? The lender gets a call. Agent tells them that appraiser “X” just called to set up an appointment to do the appraisal for 123 Main St. That darn appraiser killed my last deal and if he is appraising this house, I will have my clients find another lender. I flat-out refuse to work with this appraiser. Whether it’s the listing or buyer’s agent, who put this person in charge of the appraisal process? Does the banker have to listen to them and risk losing the loan? It depends. What’s his...

Real, Real Estate Reform Needed 5

Real, Real Estate Reform Needed

What a crazy system we have grown into since Dodd-Frank. All this talk about “Big Data” and “Standardization” makes me want to scream! Enough is enough. Before we get to the appraisal process discussion, let’s talk about how real estate is priced all across this country. Realtors® price homes, period. No Big Data, no thoughts of mortgage risk, accuracy, consistency, transparency, and no one is looking over their shoulders asking “why” on every choice they make. No regression analysis, no quality or condition ratings, not too much of anything that resembles an appraisal these days. Yet, they are quick to...

Dear AMC, Goodbye - Why I'm leaving Residential Appraisal 21

Dear AMC, Goodbye…

Why I’m Leaving Residential Appraisal – Dear AMC, Goodbye! The Law of Unintended Consequences is a law, like Murphy’s Law, which is always lurking in the background to foil the attempts we humans make to control the world around us. It is particularly true of government attempts to reduce crime. A couple of examples follow: I used to love air travel. I was a flight test engineer at Boeing and for many years I flew all over the world for both work and recreation. Then came the shoe bomber. Now I wait in long “security” lines while thousands of security...

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Is it now Necessary to Confirm the Verifiability of the Confirmation?

It appears that we, as an industry, have finally reached that all time high of stupidity in action. I was recently instructed by an appraisal management company to provide additional MLS sales on a grid to demonstrate market support for my opinion of value because I agreed with the origination appraisal. Had this been something other than a typical residential subdivision where the appraisal used sales from the same development, perhaps I would understand this requirement. Still, one wonders at what point have we crossed into the twilight zone of appraisal review. I have attested to the confirmation of each...

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Original Comparable Photos

I recently received an AMC update and reminder about the need for and why actual comparable photos are necessary. My reply: Original Comparable Photographs: Scope of Work Point 3: Inspection of the comparable sales from at least the street. This requirement does not tie the appraiser to a specific time for that inspection. Geographical competence would have the appraiser in the area of the comparables many times, and depending on the appraiser’s experience, for many years. Taking a comparable photo a month, six months, a year or more after the sale, does not represent the sale’s condition at the time...

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Do Associates Need to Be Licensed to Take Comp Photos?

Do Associates Need to Be Licensed to Take Photos for a Property Inspection? I received a great question in my email the other day: I am writing on behalf of one of our appraisal managers who is a certified in Illinois. He wants to send one of his associates only to take the photos for a property inspection, but the associate is unlicensed. Is he authorized to do so, or would the associate need a temporary license of some kind? In some states this is considered clerical work, and some states are considered volunteer states, so a license is not required as long as the certified appraiser clarifies in the report who took the...

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Drive By Comp Pictures and Appraisers Safety

Rethinking Drive By Comp Pictures I posted the following true (and scary) experience on Facebook a few days ago: “I just had to file a police report. I was taking a picture of a house from the street for a drive-by pre-foreclosure. The owner ran out of the home and stood in front of my car. He demanded to know what I was doing. He walked around to the driver’s window, and I calmly explained to him that I was taking a picture for the bank. He got very verbally abusive and demanded to know why. I told him it was...

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