Are you paying unseen add-on fees for your appraisal?By Ken Harney, nationally syndicated real estate writer

Excerpt: Are you getting fleeced on appraisal charges when you buy a house or refinance? Could you be paying as much as double what the appraiser is receiving for actually doing the work, with the excess going to an undisclosed third party?

Many appraisers say yes. And they’re eager to let consumers know that when the appraisal charge is $500 or $800 or $1,000, they’re frequently being paid just a fraction of that. The rest is going to an “appraisal management” company…
Read the full article here and add your comments:
My comment: Finally, someone is writing about the AMC Consumer Ripoff!! I have been saying since 2008 that the best way to “fight” AMCs is to let consumers know they are getting ripped off!! Appraisers complain about how AMCs treat appraisers and low fees, but don’t seem to focus on consumers, who are paying much more.

Funny video in yesterday’s Comergence ad for background checks
You just gotta watch it!! Whomever did this ad knows about appraisers!! It is a commercial, of course, but very realistic regarding who has a clipboard and who has a tablet. I am the clipboard appraiser of course ;>
Regulators Said to Weigh Commercial Appraisal Change That May Spur Lending
Source: Bloomberg
Excerpt: As President Donald Trump seeks to knock down government constraints on business loans, U.S. bank regulators have tentatively agreed to ease an appraisal requirement that could help commercial real estate borrowers, said people familiar with talks among the agencies.
Regulators have decided the threshold for requiring appraisals on commercial property should be increased to $400,000 from $250,000, according to two people who asked that they not be identified because the discussions aren’t public. The threshold for residential real restate would remain at $250,000, they said.

My comment: of course, we worry about residential being next. But, Fannie and investors don’t really care about the deminimus. They still order appraisals. I remember when FIRREA passed in 1989 with the $250,000 deminimus and we thought residential lender appraising would be in big trouble. But, Fannie et al still required appraisals. However, there are no standard investor requirements for lender commercial loans, so it will have a much bigger effect. In many areas, including my area, commercial lender fees are still way down from prior to 2008.

Meet the New Boss….CU. Practical advice from a lender reviewer
Excerpt: Comparable warnings from mis-representing the subject
The other way appraisers needlessly generate comparable warnings occurs when they misrepresent the subject. CU is actually very trusting. It believes what you tell it about the subject and so the sales it presents will be selected and ranked to match your representation of the subject.
When you call the subject a C3 it expects that it *is* actually C3, and that you will compare the home to other properties that have been identified as C3 by the other appraisers in your market.
Consensus C3 properties will be ranked high by CU; all the C2 and C4 properties will be ranked low. If the actual condition of your property is most consistent with C4, and you bring in competitive C4
properties, those will be low rank sales. Warnings will be generated because it looks like you’re overlooking more comparable properties.
Make sure you know the UAD definitions inside and out and use them as faithfully as possible.
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AQB 3rd Exposure Draft: College Degree, Experience Requirements to Change

By Isaac Peck, Editor

Excerpts: College Degree: In keeping with its previous Exposure Draft, the AQB is now proposing the complete elimination of all college coursework for the Licensed Residential credential and allowing an alternative to the Bachelor’s degree requirement for the Certified Residential credential.
Experience: …its latest proposal once again returns to the idea that a would-be appraiser may be able to substitute 100% of their experience requirements with PAREA coursework. The PAREA modules as proposed by the AQB will be able to satisfy 100% of the required experience for the Licensed Residential and Certified Residential levels, and 75% of the required experience for the Certified General level.
Comments deadline: May 12, 2017
Any changes, if adopted, will go into effect no sooner than January 1, 2018.
Read this analysis for all the details.
My comment: Many thanks to Workingre for writing this so I did not have to read it all. Gives me a headache ;> Education: I don’t really care that much about a college degree requirement for res certified. Definitely should be a requirement for cert general. Licensed appraiser requirements have always been sorta weird. When licensing was set up the states set their own requirements for licensed appraisers, which varied widely.

I studied science in college. My afternoons were filled with labs. When I graduated, I was ready to start working in labs with little additional training needed, if any. I was surprised that none of my appraiser education had any “lab” time. Appraiser training has always varied widely, depending on who you worked for as a trainee. But, banks trained most appraisers so there was some consistency. I was trained at an assessor’s office, with training by supervisory appraisers and classes. When banks laid off their staff appraisers and fee appraisers took over training about 20 years ago, it has been a hopeless mess.

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
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 or send an email to . Or call 800-839-0227, MTW 8AM to noon, Pacific time.
Mortgage applications decreased 2.7 percent from one week earlier
WASHINGTON, D.C. (March 22, 2017) – Mortgage applications decreased 2.7 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending March 17, 2017.
The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 2.7 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 2 percent compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index decreased 3 percent from the previous week. The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index decreased 2 percent from one week earlier. The unadjusted Purchase Index decreased 2 percent compared with the previous week and was 5 percent higher than the same week one year ago. The Government Refinance Index decreased 12 percent to the lowest level since December 2014.
The refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 45.1 percent of total applications from 45.6 percent the previous week. The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity increased to 9.0 percent of total applications, the highest level since October 2014.
The FHA share of total applications decreased to 10.9 percent from 11.1 percent the week prior. The VA share of total applications decreased to 10.1 percent from 11.1 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 ($424,100 or less) remained unchanged at 4.46 percent, with points increasing to 0.41 from 0.37 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value ratio (LTV) loans. The effective rate remained unchanged from last week.
The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances (greater than $424,100) decreased to 4.40 percent from 4.44 percent, with points increasing to 0.37 from 0.28 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate decreased from last week.
The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages backed by the FHA increased to its highest level since January 2014, 4.33 percent, from 4.29 percent, with points increasing to 0.40 from 0.39 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.
The average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages increased to 3.68 percent from 3.66 percent, with points decreasing to 0.37 from 0.45 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate remained unchanged from last week.
The average contract interest rate for 5/1 ARMs decreased to 3.41 percent from 3.45 percent, with points increasing to 0.25 from 0.24 (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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