No Mandatory AMC Use

UWM Appraisal Direct: No Mandatory AMC Use for Appraisal Assignments

When you work with UWM Appraisal Direct… if a borrower pays $500 for an order, the entire fee goes to you. UWM doesn’t make $1 on the order. No appraisal management fees…

This announcement just popped into my email, from HousingWire:

UWM launches AMC-free appraisal program

UWM to coordinate appraisals in-house

United Wholesale Mortgage (UWM) announced today that it will no longer require its brokers to use appraisal management companies to complete appraisals.

The Pontiac, Michigan-based wholesale lender will instead coordinate appraisals in-house, contracting with appraisers directly, offering appraisers and brokers a way to bypass AMCs altogether, which UWM CEO Mat Ishbia characterizes as “middlemen.”

During a Facebook Live address, Ishbia proclaimed that while AMCs add value to the industry, appraisals have been a stumbling block for the mortgage industry.

UWM Appraisal Direct available in all 50 States Starting October 1.

UWM Announcement:

Soon, mortgage brokers in our network will have UWM Appraisal Direct as an additional option for getting appraisals completed on UWM loans through Appraisal Manager in EASE. You’ll get greater transparency throughout the appraisal process, so you can more effectively manage your loans and support your borrowers. Keep an eye out for more information later this month.

In the meantime, a message to appraisers: UWM Appraisal Direct is looking to partner with the best appraisers across the country who share our goal of making the appraisal process easier so you can get paid faster.

When you work with UWM Appraisal Direct, you’ll have a dedicated in-house team available to assist with the scheduling and execution of your appraisals. We’ll provide support and timely communication to you, our broker partners and their borrowers — ensuring all parties know what’s going on at each step in the appraisal process.

Plus, you’ll enjoy these benefits and more:

  • Full appraisal amount paid directly to you with no appraisal management fee — For example, if a borrower pays $500 for an order, the entire fee goes to you. UWM doesn’t make $1 on the order. No appraisal management fees. You work directly with UWM.
  • Next-day payment — Get paid the following business day after successful completion of the appraisal.
  • Consistent business — UWM is the #1 wholesale mortgage lender in the nation with over 60,000 closings per month, so there will be no shortage of opportunities for you with UWM Appraisal Direct.
  • Strong partnership — We take pride in the entire mortgage process and will work closely with you to make sure that we are collectively successful.
Dave Towne
Image credit flickr - Joris Leermakers
Dave Towne

Dave Towne

AGA, MNAA, Accredited Green Appraiser - Licensed in WA State since 2003. Dave Towne on

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25 Responses

  1. Avatar Koma says:

    Dave, Thanks for this information.

  2. Avatar Shen Valley Appraiser says:

    Sounds promising – but until the Fine Print is published & there’s no “indemnify & hold Harmless clause” buried in paragraph 21 – I’ll withhold my enthusiasm. For those who aren’t aware – the hold harmless & indemnify clauses that these entities bury in their sign up verbiage are translated as another layer of liability the Appraiser incurs to an entity which you know nothing about (hiring practices, business practices, etc), and to which you are held to the laws of a State other than your own (wherever the entity is based) if you are sued or involved in a suit with them or the company goes under owing money. Read the sign up forms carefully.

  3. Avatar JC says:

    Great news! Thanks Dave

  4. Avatar BigAl says:

    I’m a bit confused. The signup link is to Anow. Are they using Anow platform to place their orders and how much is Anow subscription going to cost?

    • Avatar F F says:

      They have 3 packages $50, $100 and $500. The $100 package is the most popular. Keep in mind that you’d still have to maintain your Alamode, Bradford, … appraisal software subscription for non-UWM work.

    • Avatar Mark Skapinetz says:

      You don’t have to pay anything for the first year other than the $15.00 upload fee. If you want to buy a subscription you can but don’t have to right now to get UWM orders.

      • Avatar Koma says:

        Why do we have to pay any fee to upload their requested report? We’re paying a fee to cover for their tech costs and I guess it’s ok because this is our new norm. So ridiculous! How about this my fee is $xxx and when I down load the order on my end there is a $15 tech fee you’ll pay at that time not when my invoice is paid. Only fair right?

  5. So it is like Mercury, but with lots of glitches…not new.

    • Avatar Kyle says:

      Bingo. They switched to a diffrent platform that is more expensive! Thanks guys.

      • Cost to the appraiser for the 3 bottom feeder clients they will support makes no sense. Furthermore their platform is riddled with glitches. I have been getting calls and emails daily asking me to complete my registration which obviously has a monthly recurring fee. They all now go to spam….its a hard pass for me.

  6. Avatar Amanda Benatar says:

    Too automated, too many glitches so far. Just had a few orders, on eiwth no contact info and have called & emailed multiple times with no response. Another got the order, left message with contact. They returned message next day, confirming appointment time, went to site to update and order is nowhere to be found, look in emails and they cancelled for non-responsive. I had accepted the order, so that was a response. It was about 24 hours from acceptance before contact returned response. Again, left phone messages and emails through the platform with no response. Feel bad for the borrower since in this area we are booking 2-3 weeks out and now they have to wait for another appraiser to be assigned and contact, I guess.

  7. Baggins Baggins says:

    Just had a long old chat with ANOW rep. Parent company Voxture, Canadian based. ANOW requires a few percent credit card surcharge for appraiser to get paid, as from what I understand UWM is not paying paper based checks, and ANOW facilitates payment for UWM to the appraiser via Stripe payment services company. I suggested the option because we appreciate checks in the mail. UWM sets the time frame until acceptance which was 2 hours, is currently at 3, and that is a blanket time frame which the lender selects across the board for everyone, does not sound like they can adjust that for individual orders or appraisers, but not entirely clear on that point. Lenders in control of the time to accept window time frame. One good feature Anow offers which others do not, sounds like the appraiser may be in control of their own open order count. Anow only has one US lender on board, hopes to have more soon. Their system is fastest first, it’s automated based but then all choices to pull or release later if necessary, are supposedly lender rep decisions. I suggested rotational as a better solution for more fair distribution, otherwise it’s just ‘the amc model’ without an amc. I asked specifically about ‘membership fees’. They could use a better FAQ, the rep said no membership fees for appraisers. Appraisers do pay the per order fee like Mercury. They do offer integration with Mercury & Total, but according to rep are optional.

    Well, thanks to the rep for answering my questions (ANOW rep.)

    Might be worth a sign up if things slow down. From what I gather, the system does not charge membership fees for appraisers, only per diem per order fees like Mercury. I remain mystified how they have so many orders processed advertised on the website but only have one US lender currently. Probably from previous acquisition or whatever.

    Shen Valley, I read the terms, sounds more like mutual indemnity for the software and use, and did not read like an amc hold harmless which dumps everything on the appraiser. I’m no legal expert but that read more standard software disclosure to me. Not worried about that. Agreeing to the third party tech agreements is different than an amc or a lender agreement, I’m not worried. Thanks.

  8. Avatar Cynthia says:

    The Anow system is horrible. It’s really too bad UWM is putting up with their mess. When you bid a job the Anow system does not update so they pay the wrong amount, messages do not go through, I could go on. It is a mess.

  9. Avatar South Florida Appraiser says:

    UWM Appraisal Direct is a Joke. I’m glad they give young people opportunity but at least have a couple of Staff Appraisers to solve minor issues. NO knowledge whatsoever of the appraisal process, I did 13 reports in the last month and the headaches are never ending with BS revisions. On the upside they pay very fast, just not worth the headache in my opinion.

  10. Avatar jeff says:

    Where does UWM come up with the fee charged? $570 is steep for an appraisal in Polk County Florida. average cost in this area is $325 on average for a single-family home in a sub-division with lots of comps. when called and asked a question the phone just goes silent. I may end up just a missed potential borrower.

    • Baggins Baggins says:

      Hold on. The fee is the local standard for appraiser vendor services average, with no middle men raking any portion of the fee. Best reflected on the VA appraisal panel fees, taken from mortgage disclosures, so look at that for comparative fee relationships first. The average cost, clarify cost. The average consumer charge, vendor fee if operating under third party assignment services, or not? Lots of comps? So there is a high turnover or it’s a very large subdivision? Please clarify. Specifically what makes more data easier to sort through than less data, both can be quite time consuming. When utilizing voice communication, it’s important to use industry standard language for better articulation or the request. If appraisers are going to pay such substantial overhead, abide such complex rule sets from a multitude of regulatory agencies, shoulder liability, like any other professional, fairly compensated. There is always non qe lending if you’re not o.k. with typical mortgage lending terms.

      This is an important post which illustrates how consumers often perceive costs and fees when engaging mortgage lenders. Specifically on the topic of soft costs vs hard costs. For the laymen; hard costs are what a consumer pays out of pocket, actual money paid which is not a promissory note and not a loan in any form. Hard costs represent real world limitations to accessing mortgage services, like any other retail product offered to consumers. A product is offered, a cost is paid to access said product. Hard costs, pull the money out or walk away from the product. Soft costs are financed into a loan package, otherwise described as various financing fees, something consumers can simply sign for and not actually pay out of pocket upfront for. The financing fees are commonly added on top of the products price, actually increasing total out of pocket costs, compared to paying all fees hard costs which would have been cheaper, because the costs were not financed and amortized to be paid incrementally later on.

      There is usually a lending rate to represent the cost of borrowing money to afford the purchase price, which effects the total cash equivalent payment amount, ie the amortized cash equivalent based on the lending rate. If you pay $200k for something cash, you own it outright. You only pay $200k. If you borrow $200k for something, you may hold possession, but do not have true unencumbered ownership, while maintaining a commitment to pay for said product or face repossession, ie the lender maintains first position should the borrower default on the purchase payment plan commitment. And you pay the financing fees necessary to create and service the loan.

      Enter soft cost fees. Mortgage lending processing fees, of which there are many. We’ll use a conservative figure presuming the consumer has a credit union rather than a bank, $3.5k mortgage closing costs. $3.5kTack on hard costs like appraisal, home inspector, various utility inspectors, the costs add up quickly. Just on the buy side, it’s easy to spend $7k – $10k or more just to facilitate the sale inspection and new loan. The seller also shoulders the agency fees so tag on another $10k-$15k or so for even a low $200k home price number. Seller pays the most substantial hard costs of them all, realty agents don’t wait for commission payments, they are due upon closing.

      Let’s talk about putting that much commitment on the line, and skimping the hard costs. FYI, hard costs are among the most important efforts a buyer can commit to for protection for financial commitment reasons. The appraiser is paid irregardless if they move the show along or not, one of the quite limited few independent checks and balances within the lending pipeline not controlled by large corporations or their subsidiaries and not dependent upon sales commissions.

      People don’t mind rolling in tens of thousands of soft cost financing which is added on to long term amortized loan commitments, before the amount is actually amortized, but will balk and walk for a few hundred difference in hard cost fees for things like the appraisal service. It’s an easy decision to decide to trade quality for cost of service. We’re so happy UWM stepped away from appraisal management companies, prioritizing quality of appraisal services over dangerously low discounted vendor fees which create more liability than cost savings. Jeff, keep saving. Purchasing is superior to renting and up front hard costs are basically a non issue from a buyers perspective. Buyers should ideally have $5k or more cash on hand. You need to focus on lending terms, reliability of the lending companies, how they handle loan payment servicing, a hundred other considerations. Don’t skip the quality appraisal and don’t skip the quality home inspector. Get better lower power rates, by pay your closing costs up front, try to finance the least amount possible. Keep saving.

  11. Avatar Stephanie says:

    I did well over 100 reports for UWM. I showed 4 late reports and two rebuttals in December 2021 from borrowers who were real estate agents. My issue with UWM is up until March 2022 I would get calls for rush orders and always accepted whatever my schedule allowed. My issue was in March I did 23 appraisals for them and then April 2022 got three and only one final inspection for new construction May 5. My orders stopped cold. I spoke with whomever I could and they said there was no negative reflections on my profile. Has anyone else done work for them and this happen?

  12. Avatar AppraiserInPA says:

    Just got my first UWM order in about a year. And here is the kicker……it IS through an AMC.

    • Baggins Baggins says:

      Is the appraiser side compensation reduced? That’s when I used to forward the order back to the lender directly and say; I’m available, just not through these amc’s whom steal half my income. Lenders are often surprised to see the actual orders at the appraisers end. The amc’s promise and promise and promise, this will not effect appraisers income, more efficiency, more orders, appraisers will thrive. Hard to rebut the real world truth of the matter that the order was half fee rate compared to before though. That’s why one of the most effective methods to get lenders away from the amc model, is to share the real world orders with management. They are in fact part of the client set so there is no violations of privacy, it’s just another department further up the ladder, try to send that to the mortgage managers, if there are any left whom have not been laid off.

  13. Avatar cc says:

    UWM has taken over as the AMC and the lender. (lots of google results) and they just added a fee to EVERY order.

    If the order comes over at $700 that sounds great… but its not $700
    Its 700-$29 lender QC fee
    700-$16 platform fee
    700-$20.60 fee which is a percentage that slides around.

    In addition, they MANDATE you ONLY use Stripe to get paid and they take an extra ~3% fee out of your pay.

    700=700-29-16-20.60-21=613.40 for an order that a reasonable and customary fee is >$77 and that 775 would have been a check in my mailbox at 775…. before taxes…

    • Baggins Baggins says:

      One then considers if this operational method would require ANOW to register as an amc appraisal management company or not.

      There is specific regulatory language there that can be reviewed. How does that go again? If a company oversees more than so many appraisers and controls aspects of engagement, selects appraisers, defined as an appraisal management company, must register as such, etc, etc. Something like that.

      Workarounds to kickback limitations? Obviously these fees traditionally were not paid by the appraiser, and were not folded into appraisal service fees. Is the consumer still being charged various fees for the services appraisers are now shouldering, and do they become a thing of value for increased lender profits? Otherwise, why go through the effort of this approach?


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No Mandatory AMC Use

by Dave Towne time to read: 2 min