Desktop Appraisal to Become the New Norm
by Isaac Peck, Editor
Excerpts: Sketch vs. Floor Plan
One notable requirement that is expected of the Desktop assignments is that they will require a floor plan instead of just a sketch. A floor plan takes the sketch a step further by including interior walls and room labeling, in most cases.
The obvious question is how are appraisers going to get these floor plans?
…the requirement for a floor plan in the desktop appraisal strongly suggests that appraisers will be required to work with real estate agents and/or the home seller and have them use a third-party tool to walk through the house, take pictures, and use advanced mobile app to generate a floor plan based on the agent or seller walking through the house.
… There is also the question of whether the introduction of desktop appraisals will potentially lead to a broader range of alternative appraisal products into the mix. Given that some senior executives at Fannie Mae were predicting that hybrid appraisals would become mainstream by 2022, it is actually a little surprising that desktop appraisal assignments are the first alternative product to get a permanent place on the GSE’s valuation roster. Appraisers will just have to wait to see what the future holds!
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My comments: Who will do the floor plans? They take much time for appraisers to measure and use appraisal sketching software. Many years ago, Fannie required them for a year or so, but quit due to appraiser complaints. I still do rough sketches for myself, so I don’t miss a bathroom or small bedroom!
Fannie met with Cubicasa and Inside Maps, who agreed to make their software conform to ANSI. Cubicasa is $34.90 per use. I have no idea how a homeowner will be expected to have an expensive smartphone (iPhone 12 Pro +) and learn how to use this software. In my market, many real estate agents are having these done or doing it themselves.
Some AMCs are recruiting appraisers to do these desktops with someone else using the floor plan apps. I don’t think many fee appraisers will want to hassle with finding someone to do them and pay for using the app.