The End of AMCs?
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Wells Fargo has agreed to a $50 million settlement over inflated appraisal fees.
Think about this for a minute…..
The people bringing the lawsuit (the “Plaintiffs”) claim that Wells Fargo violated Federal law by charging homeowners more than the amount Wells Fargo paid for Broker’s Price Opinions (“BPOs”) and improperly concealing these “marked-up” charges. So, Wells Fargo was charging customers more for BPO fees on defaulted loans than the actual fees charged by the vendor. Is this any different than the use of an AMC?
From the case:
“Wells Fargo does not identify any provision in any of the numerous mortgage forms it puts in front of the Court that would authorize a mortgage servicer to charge borrowers an undisclosed mark-up on the BPO fee.”
VaCAP needs your help…
Have you filed a complaint against an AMC? If you have filed a complaint with DPOR or any of the Federal agencies against an AMC, contact VaCAP confidentially. We want to hear from you on the progress.
Things to Ponder about…..
How much risk are you exposed to when including E&O information in an appraisal report? Who sees your report after it leaves your hands? Is there personal information on the Declarations Page? Dave Towne just wrote about this topic. See what he has to say here.
What are your business hours? Do you respond to AMC requests after business hours? What impact does it have on your personal life? What about the look you get from your spouse or significant other when an AMC calls or texts at 8:00 AM on Sunday morning?
What about those text messages the AMCs send out? Are they after business hours? Do you even respond? Have you blocked the AMC from sending text messages? Do you have a personal and business cell phone? Do you use the AMCs proprietory app? Are you sure it is secure and USPAP compliant?
Do you blindly agree to all vendor agreements? Do you read them? Do you understand all the terms? Is the agreement in compliance with Virginia Law?
What are the real consequences of accepting low fees from AMCs? Are you setting a precedence for lower customary and reasonable fees? What are your services and experience worth? Are you charging accordingly?
Are you an active participant in the industry? Are you a member of a professional organization? Do you regularly read industry blogs? Listen to podcasts? Attend State Board Meetings? Do you regularly talk with colleagues?
What about CE Classes? Do you take them on line? In a classroom? Is the best education in a CE class coming from your peers? Can you truly get that experience sitting in front of a computer?