What’s Wrong With this Sentence?
AMC says sentence was unacceptable based on one word in that sentence
Beware appraisers, big brother is watching what you write.
This is the sentence in question. See if you can figure out what is considered to be ‘wrong’ about it:
“Skagit County is centrally located between Seattle and Vancouver, BC, and is considered a desirable residential area with good appeal and has had continued stable growth for years.”
Okay…now re-read that sentence again.
Then, read this, which is from the FNMA Seller’s Guide, pg 567 in the Feb. 2016 edition:
Unacceptable Appraisal Practices
The following are examples of unacceptable appraisal practices:
- development of or reporting an opinion of market value that is not supportable by market data or is misleading;
- development of a valuation conclusion based either partially or completely on the sex, race, color, religion, handicap, national origin, familial status, or other protected classes of either the prospective owners or occupants of the subject property or the present owners or occupants of the properties in the vicinity of the subject property;
- development of a valuation conclusion based on factors that local, state, or federal law designate as discriminatory, and thus, prohibited;
There is more in this section, but this is the relevant part.
I was called on Wed morning, March 2, by an AMC’s review appraiser, with the lender’s checklist in hand, who said the sentence I wrote was unacceptable based on one word in that sentence. Can you guess which word?
I was told that this word may be one of the ‘banned’ words in the EEOC Fair Housing law. I’m not sure if it actually is. I don’t have time now to research that law. I was told that since this word is only ‘subjective’ and not based on actual objective supportable facts (in the report), it was unacceptable to have it in the report. I was told that the FNMA Seller’s Guide quoted above backs that up.
What is sickening, and time wasting, is this sentence has been in my reports for at least 10 years. I didn’t put that word in the sentence on purpose as a way to thumb my nose at the EEOC law. I was merely trying to describe the quality of the region, and not the specific neighborhood.
No one, until today, has bothered to be concerned about it.
So once again, we appraisers are forced to write reports that are very generic in some cases***, with lots of CYA statements mainly to protect us, and allegedly, the lender from potential loan buy-backs.
*** This is probably the reason I see such Pablum in many reports I review. I see very little in terms of specifics and much wording that can apply to a home in Nome, AK, or in Key West, FL.