Author: Guest Author

Reforming the Appraisal Review Process: The Illogical Reality of Mortgage Appraisal Reviews 23

The Illogical Reality of Mortgage Appraisal Reviews 

Reforming the appraisal review process is essential to maintaining the integrity of the real estate market and protecting consumers and homeowners.  In mortgage financing, the appraisal process is often seen as the foundation of accurate property valuation and market stability. However, beneath this façade of reliability lies a troubling rift: while real estate appraisers must navigate stringent licensing protocols and scrutiny, the individuals reviewing the appraisals often operate with minimal oversight, instead leaning heavily on automated systems and algorithms. This stark disparity not only undermines the credibility of the review process but also revives the threat of past missteps, once...

CFPB | Bureau Crackdown: Unfair Practices Hurting Consumers 17

CFPB Crackdown: Unfair Practices Hurting Consumers

Bureau is currently investigating various fees associated with obtaining a loan, with the goal of identifying any that may be particularly burdensome or concerning for borrowers. As we all know many AMCs are not paying Customary & Reasonable fee as required by TILA. They have consistently pushed down the pay of Appraisers while making undisclosed profit off consumers and prioritizing cheapest and fastest over quality and competency. The CFPB has been in communication with individuals behind the scenes and are concerned with what has been shown enough to include AMCs in their data collection process. Now is the time to...

Appraisal Fees & Value: Lessons from Picasso & Steinmetz 26

Appraisal Fees & Value: Lessons from Picasso & Steinmetz

Picasso answered “$5,000 madam.” “But it only took you five minutes.” “No, madam, it took me my whole life.”  The Appraisal Institute has been a source of frustration and criticism within the appraisal profession for quite some time. I must admit that I have also expressed my dissatisfaction with them. Nevertheless, I must acknowledge that the new CEO, Cindy Chance, appears to be a positive change and is making some valuable points about our profession from her new position. In particular, she recently discussed appraisal fees in a piece she wrote. In this excerpt, she shares two stories that provide...

The One-Mile Rule: Prudent Policy or Modern Day Redlining? 8

The One-Mile Rule: Prudent Policy or Modern Day Redlining?

…whether through redlined maps or implicit “one-mile rule,” the result can be undervalued properties in historically marginalized neighborhoods.  Throughout the history of mortgage banking and lending in the United States, underwriting policies have significantly influenced the appraisal process for home purchases and refinances. Appraisers must follow underwriter appraisal review guidelines meticulously to ensure their appraisal reports are accepted by the lender. Unfortunately, in the past, these policies became the basis for redlining, wherein certain communities were systematically denied access to mortgage credit. In this article, we delve into the historical context of underwriting policies and their influence on the appraisal...

Is the GSEs "Appraisal Modernization" Really Just Mass Appraisal? 18

Is the GSE’s “Appraisal Modernization” Really Just Mass Appraisal?

Mass Appraisal tend to exhibit a regressive nature…  In the intricate landscape of real estate mortgage financing, the notion of appraisal waivers recently dubbed “Value Acceptance”, by the Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs), has stirred considerable debate. The most recent statistics show Value Acceptance accounts for up to 40% of all mortgage approvals. It is presented as part of the GSEs “Appraisal Modernization” initiative, which aims to streamline the mortgage appraisal process. However, a closer examination reveals potential drawbacks, raising questions about its efficacy and impact on the housing market. Despite its roots in a methodology designed to support appraisers, Value...

The Sales Agents Derailed This Deal! 4

The Sales Agents Derailed This Deal!

The lender and the AMC could have applied that veto to the sales agents, using the appraisal as proof positive that the agents derailed this deal.  What is the ROV for? The answer is the listing agents pricing strategy and the buyers agents buying strategy. The lender will go through the appraisal with a fine tooth comb and microscope, while ignoring the fact the initial BPO and CMA which led to the listed price the contract was formed around, was totally inadequate and riddled with errors. Clearly off the page in relationship to existing market value indicators. I’ve seen numerous...

Let's All Build the Gallows Together 61

Let’s All Build the Gallows Together

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have issued a clarion call to all appraisers to pitch in and help build the gallows from which they will hang us all in 2025. The mission is to “modernize” the appraisal profession into a skeleton crew of compliant zombies who will be rubber stamping appraisal reports for $25 each (Source: Voice of Appraisal) from the dark confines of their private offices. “Grab some nails, get your hammer, pick up that saw and let’s build a new gallows… I mean model, that gives lenders everything they want and need to inflate the housing market into...

AMCs Billing Scheme, Hidden Profits & Deceptive Practices 79

AMCs Billing Scheme, Hidden Profits & Deceptive Practices

Appraisers who do not agree to their hidden billing methods are excluded from the majority of the GSE lending marketplace for appraisal orders.  Appraisal Management Companies (AMC’s) do not pass on cost savings for reduced appraisal services to consumers. Instead, they keep the savings for themselves without disclosing the amount to the consumer or the appraiser. What should have been cost savings for the consumer are pocketed by the AMC in secret. This is considered a junk fee or unearned fee billing scheme under current law. Appraisers who participate in this system are in violation of The Management Rule of...

How Many Fees Are Needed for One Appraisal Order 65

How Many Fees Are Needed for One Appraisal Order?

Being beaten up about a fee increase request, new higher technology fees, or losing out to an order in a ridiculous bidding war and learning the AMC made more money than the appraiser on an order, or even having an order cancelled because someone else offered to take less compensation, are only a few of the issues the appraisal industry is facing.  After reflecting on 2023, from the position as an appraiser, experiencing the changes in volume of orders, the compensation being offered to the appraiser, the amount of waivers being given so no appraisal was required, and the roll...

Damned If You Do and Damned If You Don’t 34

Damned If You Do and Damned If You Don’t

Damned if you do, damned if you don’t has become the new normal in the real estate appraisal profession. The government and those that write the rules have made it illegal (a punishable violation) to refuse an appraisal assignment in an area which consists primarily of non-whites. The government and those that write the rules also state the purpose of an appraisal is to determine the value of the home/property in its market setting, so an underwriter can make a lending decision. Back in the day, this protected the lender from lending more than the home/property is worth. It also...

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