Backseat Driving

A large lender has recently amended their appraisal policy regarding comparables.

The table below was taken from their general information Correspondent Bulletin.

The change greatly expands what and how an appraiser filters data. It appears as though this lender wants to stand over the shoulder of the appraiser to make certain that the filtering is to their liking.

It brings backseat driving to a new level.

Imagine driving someone to a destination and having to provide a detailed list of every possible route to this destination as you arrive. Imagine having to provide detailed routes that you never seriously considered or had already discarded.

Imagine this conversation: “Why didn’t you turn left at the corner?”

“Because it leads off of a cliff.”

“Show me.”

Irritating, isn’t it?

Gathering maps and determining the best possible route to a value destination is the job of a seasoned appraiser, right?

What does USPAP call this process?

Its called Standard 1:

In developing a real property appraisal, an appraiser must identify the problem to be solved, determine the scope of work necessary to solve the problem, and correctly complete research and analyses necessary to produce a credible appraisal.

It’s entirely up to you as professional appraiser whether you wish to hop in the car and hand piles of maps to the person in the backseat.

Most prefer to follow their own path.

By Lee Lansford – Illinois Appraiser Newsletters – Volume 4, Issue 6

Latest posts by IDFPR Board (see all)


Provided as a service to licensed and registered Illinois appraisal professionals as well as Illinois course providers and users of appraisals. Illinois Appraiser Newsletters promote a greater understanding of USPAP, the Act, and the Administrative Rules of the State of Illinois. promote a greater understanding of USPAP, the Act, and the Administrative Rules of the State of Illinois.

You may also like...

4 Responses

  1. Avatar RE Appraiser says:

    It looks like this lender is not asking anything about standard 1, as they are not telling you which route to take, they just want you to describe which route was taken and WHY it was taken. That is a standard 2 issue in reporting what you did to arrive at the comparables used. It should not cause any change to your scope to simply tell the client how you got to the end result. If most appraisers would have been detailing the “why” in their reports for the past 10 years instead of saying “because I’m the appraiser”, then maybe the client wouldn’t be looking over our shoulders so much now.

  2. Philip Gray via Facebook Philip Gray via Facebook says:

    Me – “Doctor I have a sore throat.” Doctor – “Here’s some medicine to fix you right up.” Me – “Doctor explain all of the medicine you COULD have given me but didn’t. List their names, both trade name and generic name, and why you chose not to use them.” Sheesh, I’m glad I don’t work for that nameless lender.

    • Avatar RE Appraiser says:

      Would you ask the doctor “Why” you are giving me the medicine and what good will it do me? Or do you just assume that whatever your doctor says is always correct…. I am a real estate appraiser, but I am sorry to say that there are many appraiser’s that do not understand the concepts of value and if they can’t explain why they did what they did, then they might need to find a new job in this environment.

      • Avatar TomAl says:

        RE Appraiser, are you talking about Self-Contained Appraisal Reports which contains an extensive level of detail and significant amount of data (usually more costly) OR Summary Appraisal Reports? Why do you think appraisers need to explain everything and every little thing to the client??? Does your mechanic explain why he didn’t use a specific brand of oil or brake pads etc.? Do you ask him to make you a list of all possible products he could have used but didn’t and why? This is ludicrous!


Leave a Reply

We welcome critical posts & opposing points of view. We value robust & civil discourse. You may openly disagree, but state your case in an atmosphere of mutual respect, in which everyone has a right to a particular view about the topic of conversation. Please keep remarks about the topic at hand, & PLEASE avoid personal attacks. If the poster gets you upset, it is the Internet, you can walk away from it.

Personal attacks harm the collegial atmosphere we encourage on AppraisersBlogs.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

xml sitemap

Backseat Driving

by IDFPR Board time to read: 1 min