What is the White House Worth? Nearly $400 Million, Says Zillow

Excerpt: Want to buy the White House? Well, you can’t. But if you could, it would go for just under $400 million, says new hypothetical Zillow data.
According to the data, the White House has appreciated 15 percent since Barack Obama’s inauguration in 2009, and is currently valued at $397.9 million. Were it to actually be listed on Zillow, it would be the most valuable home on the site-and rightfully so.
My comment: Of course, we all know how accurate Zillow is ;>
New Netflix Lemony Snicket series and Realtors – humor (Just for fun!!)
Netflix release of “A Series of Unfortunate Events.”
The children fall in the care of Count Olaf (Neil Patrick Harris), their geographically “nearest living relative,” who is plotting to steal their fortune.  From here on out, the orphans initiate a process of guardian hopping following every next guardian’s death at the hands of Count Olaf.

…during a definitive moment in the episode “The Wide Window II”-corresponding to the third book in the series-Klaus convinces his aunt to leave her hiding place at Curdled Cave by reminding her the cave is on sale. He only had to drive the fact that agents would be showing up for the once reluctant woman to run straight out of the cave in a panic.

My comment: I have watched the first two episodes so far. Neil Patrick Harris is fantastic!! Now if we could get something about appraisers on the show. I will never forget “Vic the appraiser” on the Sopranos!! I can’t remember if he got beat up or not, but it was close ;>

Appraiser email phishing scam – beware!!!
Some appraisers have received an email (see below) stating a complaint has been filed against their practice. This is a phishing scheme to scare the recipient into clicking on the link, and it may download a file with malicious code.
Remove the item from your computer if you have received one of these emails.
The clues that this email is bogus is the subject “Department of Consumers Affairs”, with an “s” on the end of Consumer, and also, the From email address is @outlook.com. And it states “A complaint has been filed against your practice.” Complaints are always filed against an appraiser, not a practice. Plus, when you mouse over the pdf link, you can see it goes to a suspicious web site.
Another scam posted by an appraiser online directed at appraisers
I saw one today with what appears to be an FHA case number and asking me to verify availability. Hover over the link and it’s a site and php content that looks like its probably spyware or some other nefarious link.
Here is a link to information and strategies to defend against phishing attacks.  http://staysafeonline.org/stay-safe-online/keep-a-clean-machine/spam-and-phishing 

My CA appraisal regulator sent out an email about the scam.

Email phishing

In the Feb. 2017 issue of the paid Appraisal Today

– Seeing the forest through the trees. Look at your adjusted comp sales price range. By Rachel Massey, SRA, AI-RRS
– Residential Highest and Best Use Analysis: more than Just a “Check box” Lots of good tips including sample statements for your appraisal reports plus short case studies. By Denis Desaix, MAI, SRA
– Fee and turn time surveys – appraisers vs. AMCs/lenders

Sometimes they agree, sometimes they don’t. Some very good data on what AMCs and lenders say about increasing requirements, etc. from two AMC surveys. Also, appraiser income, changes over time etc. etc. 

To read the articles, plus 2+ years of previous
issues, subscribe to the paid Appraisal Today
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or $99 per year or $169 for two years 
Subscribers get, FREE: past 18+ months of past newsletters 
plus 4 Special Reports, plus 2 Appraiser Marketing Books!!
To purchase the paid Appraisal Today newsletter   go to
www.appraisaltoday.com/products  or call 800-839-0227.
If you are a paid subscriber and did not get the February 2017 issue, emailed February 1, 2017, please send an email to info@appraisaltoday.com  and we will send it to you!! Or, hit the reply button. Be sure to put in a comment requesting it
Fannie Mae Announcement SEL-2017-01: Selling Guide Updates,  1/29/17.
Comparables in New Projects or Subdivisions (New)
Currently, we require the appraiser to select at least one closed sale from the subject subdivision or project and one sale from outside the subject subdivision or project when selecting comparables for the appraisal. (The third comparable can be from inside or outside the subdivision or project.) In new subdivisions or projects, compliance with this requirement may be difficult due to a lack of closed sales.
With this update, we will now accept two pending sales in lieu of one closed sale in the subject subdivision or project in the event closed sales are not yet available. When this flexibility is used, the appraiser must also provide at least three closed comparable sales from outside the subject subdivision or project.
Effective Date This change is effective immediately.
Property Inspection by Appraiser Trainee (clarification)
We have clarified our existing policy that allows an unlicensed or uncertified appraiser, or an appraiser trainee to complete the property inspection. When the unlicensed or uncertified appraiser or appraiser trainee completes the property inspection, the supervisory appraiser is not required to also inspect the property.
Effective clarification is effective immediately.
My comment: Fannie has always allowed trainees. FHA does not. Most lenders do not. State regs. vary widely on trainees.
Adjustments to an Appraisal for Sales Concessions(clarification)
With this update, we have clarified that appraisers may use dollar for dollar adjustments for financing or sales concessions when such an adjustment approximates the local market’s response to these types of concessions.
Effective Date This clarification is effective immediately.
Comment from Dave Towne: clarifies the pre-written statement with the Definition of Market Value on the GSE appraisal forms.  (See 1004, page 4 of 6)
Email ads – I am looking for new advertisers that appraisers want to read about!!
Have an appraisal product or service you like, or want to find out more about?  I am looking for advertisers that my readers want. Also looking for products and services that have new features added. The open rate on these email newsletters averages 32%. For the ads, it is about 28%, a very good open rate, indicating that many readers like to read them.
Last week’s Mite-R-Gage ad was a good example. It is a product that every appraiser can use. Several appraisers told me about it, so I found the company that sells it online and contacted the owner. I was so impressed with it that I offered to writeup the ad myself. I also ordered it. http://www.mitergage.com/product.htm
If you have any ideas, just hit the reply button!!
AI Suspends Full Implementation of New Chapter Policy
The Appraisal Institute Board of Directors on January 10 voted to suspend full implementation of the new Chapter Financial Management and Administration Policy – previously targeted for January 1, 2018 – to a date to be determined later.
The Board had adopted that policy on November 18. Board members have spent considerable time since then receiving feedback from chapter leaders and other Appraisal Institute professionals about the new policy. The Appraisal Institute will continue to solicit and receive AI professionals’ input, so I encourage you to convey your constructive feedback to members of the Board.
Under the policy, chapters will retain their duties and responsibilities to develop a budget, select vendors, authorize payments, determine how funds are spent, and establish compensation packages for chapter staff. Chapters no longer will be burdened with the administrative tasks of performing accounting services, paying vendors and preparing financial reports, among others. These duties will shift to the Appraisal Institute’s national finance staff.
My comment: Good idea. Bad idea to “spring” this change without membership notice for feedback. Social Media posts can affect appraisal issues.
Appraisal Foundation temporarily suspends Appraisal Practices Board
On January 26, 2017 The Board of Trustees (BOT) of The Appraisal Foundation voted to temporarily suspend the activities of the APB, citing the desire to examine the current needs of appraiser professionals related to guidance on recognized valuation methods and techniques.
For more info, including the full news release plus appraiser comments, go to http://appraisersblogs.com/TAF-suspends-APB-operations
My comment: the APB has been somewhat controversial for various “political” reasons mostly. To see the list of Advisories, go to http://www.appraisalfoundation.org/imis/TAF/Valuation_Advisories.aspx 
HOW TO USE THE NUMBERS BELOW. Appraisals are ordered after the loan application. These numbers tell you the future for the next few weeks. For more information on how they are compiled, go to www.mbaa.org 
Note: I publish a graph of this data every month in my printed newsletter, Appraisal Today. For more information or get a FREE sample issue go to https://www.appraisaltoday.com/products.htm or send an email to info@appraisaltoday.com . Or call 800-839-0227, MTW 8AM to noon, Pacific time.

Mortgage applications decreased 3.2 percent from one week earlier

WASHINGTON, D.C. (February 1, 2017) – Mortgage applications decreased 3.2 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending January 27, 2017.  The previous week’s results included an adjustment for the MLK Day holiday.

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 3.2 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier.  On an unadjusted basis, the Index increased 11 percent compared with the previous week.  The Refinance Index decreased 1 percent from the previous week. The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index decreased 6 percent from one week earlier. The unadjusted Purchase Index increased 12 percent compared with the previous week and was 2 percent higher than the same week one year ago.

The refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 49.4 percent of total applications from 50.0 percent the previous week. The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity increased to 6.4 percent of total applications.

The FHA share of total applications decreased to 12.1 percent from 13.6 percent the week prior. The VA share of total applications increased to 12.4 percent from 12.2 percent the week prior. The USDA share of total applications remained unchanged at 0.9 percent from the week prior.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($424,000 or less) increased to its highest level since December 2016, 4.39 percent, from 4.35 percent, with points increasing to 0.34 from  0.30 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value ratio (LTV) loans.  The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances (greater than $424,000) increased to 4.32 percent from 4.28 percent, with points increasing to 0.34 from 0.31 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages backed by the FHA decreased to 4.17 percent from 4.19 percent, with points remaining unchanged at 0.35 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans.  The effective rate decreased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages increased to 3.61 percent from 3.57 percent, with points increasing to 0.33 from 0.28 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 5/1 ARMs decreased to 3.33 percent from 3.41 percent, with points decreasing to 0.22 from 0.30 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans.  The effective rate decreased from last week.

The survey covers over 75 percent of all U.S. retail residential mortgage applications, and has been conducted weekly since 1990.  Respondents include mortgage bankers, commercial banks and thrifts.  Base period and value for all indexes is March 16, 1990=100.

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