Why are barns painted red and the White House white?
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This graph has been in every issue of the paid Appraisal Today since 1992. I use the data from the MBA below. Business has been slowing down since the peak in 9/16.
The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, increased 3.3 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index increased 16 percent compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index increased 5 percent from the previous week to the highest level since December 2016. The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index increased 2 percent from one week earlier. The unadjusted Purchase Index increased 15 percent compared with the previous week and was 4 percent higher than the same week one year ago.
The refinance share of mortgage activity increased to 45.4 percent of total applications from 45.1 percent the previous week. The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity increased to 7.7 percent of total applications to the highest level since October 2014. The average loan size for purchase applications reached a survey high at $313,300.
The FHA share of total applications decreased to 11.8 percent from 12.3 percent the week prior. The VA share of total applications decreased to 11.6 percent from 11.7 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) increased to 4.36 percent from 4.30 percent, with points increasing to 0.44 from 0.38 (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 $424,100) increased to 4.27 percent from 4.23 percent, with points increasing to 0.26 from 0.25 (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 increased to 4.18 percent from 4.07 percent, with points decreasing to 0.32 from 0.37 (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 3.57 percent from 3.51 percent, with points remaining unchanged at 0.36 (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 increased to 3.48 percent from 3.35 percent, with points decreasing to 0.20 from 0.29 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate increased 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.
What is the White House Worth? Nearly $400 Million, Says Zillow
Are Granny Flats Undervalued?
by Kathy Price-Robinson, The Appraisers Research Foundation
Whether you call them granny flats, in-law units, or something else, residential accessory dwelling units (ADUs) on residential properties excite municipal planners, homeowners, and others for social and environmental reasons. They are “green” by nature because of their small size and can provide great benefits to the owner.
But they can also perplex appraisers and other real estate professionals because of erroneous perceptions and various institutional policies that complicate lending on properties featuring ADUs.
To help clarify the estimation of value of residential properties with accessory units, researchers Martin J. Brown and Taylor Watkins conducted a study to test an income-based approach to valuation of properties with ADUs.
My comment: I appraise these types of units often in my city. Typically they are not legal. I consider them similar to detached bonus rooms, offices, guest quarters. If legal, the income approach would work to determine the added value of the ADU. Of course, income from airbnb, etc. vs. “regular” rentals is another big issue. The article does not address non-legal ADUs, the vast majority of them. FYI, The Appraisers Research Foundation has been around for a long time and regularly publishes (and gives grants for) research papers. For more info, go to http://www.appraiserresearch.org/ To see their other research, click on Research Results in the top menu bar.
Poll: On average, how long does it take you to complete a 1004 interior inspection appraisal report, including inspection and drive time?
2016’s Best Small Cities in America
Small-city dwellers enjoy tighter networks, shorter commutes and an abundance of land, just to name a few advantages. Granted, there are tradeoffs such as perhaps fewer restaurant options or shorter business hours. But one of the best perks of living in a city with a relatively smaller population is cheaper cost of living – generally speaking, that is. According to the Economic Policy Institute, a two-parent, two-child family would need to earn $49,114 a year “to secure an adequate but modest living standard” in Morristown, Tenn., compared with $106,493 in Washington.
So which small cities outshine the rest? WalletHub’s analysts compared 1,268 cities with populations between 25,000 and 100,000 based on 30 key indicators of livability. They range from “housing costs” to “school-system quality” to “number of restaurants per capita.” Continue reading below for the winners of the top spots, expert commentary and a full description of our methodology.
My comment: Check your city – mine was listed!! But, did not rate high on cost of living with a median home price of around $800,000… But, you can see the mayor at the grocery store to complain about potholes ;>
Wells Fargo agrees to $50 million settlement over homeowner appraisal fees
Wells Fargo & Co (WFC.N) has agreed to pay $50 million to settle a racketeering lawsuit accusing it of overcharging hundreds of thousands of homeowners for appraisals ordered after they defaulted on their mortgage loans.
The proposed settlement, which requires court approval, was disclosed in a filing on Friday in an Oakland, California federal court. If approved, it will resolve nationwide claims that Wells Fargo charged much more than it paid for third-party appraisals, exploiting borrowers who could least afford it and driving them further into default.
The Coolest Empty Buildings in America
They’re weird, amazing, and available.
If you’ve got a few million bucks to play with, you’ll find that the country is littered with remarkable empty structures in various states of disrepair, just waiting for enterprising new owners with big dreams and deep pockets. Here are five of our current faves.
Here are a few:
Miami Marine Stadium: Miami, Florida
“Superman Building”: Providence, Rhode Island
Michigan Central Station: Detroit, Michigan
Fannie’s Property Inspection Waiver (no appraisal) effective 12/10/16 for all lenders
Notice dated 10/24/16. I suspected that this was where Fannie was going with UAD and CU. Refis only.. for now. $75 to waive the appraisal requirement. Fannie has been testing it for awhile with some lenders. You may see this referred to as “Day 1 Certainty”, the name Fannie has chosen.
Link to the 2 page fact sheet: https://www.fanniemae.com/content/fact_sheet/property-inspection-waiver-fact-sheet.pdf
Thanks to Dave Towne for this very interesting news!
My comment: I will have an article on this topic for my November newsletter, out November 1, including relevant details and what this means for you. Very interesting.
WHAT DO YOU THINK? POST YOUR COMMENTS AT www.appraisaltodayblog.com !!
Donation Fundraising for Louisiana Appraisers
Thanks (again) to Dave Towne for this info!!
The Louisiana Real Estate Appraisers Coalition (LAREAC) has started a fund raising campaign using PayPal, which will be used to equally provide donated funds to affected appraisers who are suffering as a result of the massive flooding last weekend. PayPal is being used because its administrative fee is less than another more-well-known crowd funding web site.
There are approximately 8-10 presently known appraisers who have had their homes nearly destroyed in the flood.
My comment: last week I wrote about donations to Bill Cobb, whose house was flooded. It is great that this donation method is done also.
8 Colorful Cities that Look Like They Were Designed by Crayola
See the world in a whole new light through these vibrant locales.
Just for Fun!!!
Many cities are known for their distinctive profiles and unique landmarks, but all across the globe there are regions that are landmarks in and of themselves thanks to their insane colorations. From a all-blue town in Spain that is a leftover from a Smurf marketing stunt, to a Venetian island that looks as though it was born of an intense acid trip, some of the most colorful locations in the world aren’t the biggest, just the most eye-popping. Check out eight cities and towns that offer vibrantly colorful views which are just as unforgettable as any big city skyline.
My comment: None are in the U.S. Too conservative I guess…
Great article with lots of photos and comments!!
The Most Insane Property Description Ever
Short descriptions, click here for some humor!! Reminds me of the times I am driving to the subject, hoping the house ahead is not the one I am appraising… Probably not the Most Insane, but definitely reality-based!!
These Neighborhood Amenities Can Kill Your Property Value
Excerpt: In real estate, the phrase “cash is king” is oft overused. However, if you’re struggling to sell a house in a bad ‘hood, then you already know that in reality, location is king. Purchasing a home in a great area, or an area that is up-and-coming, can help maximize the value of your home investment.
So what can tear your property value down faster than a tree through the roof? The following infographic from Realtor.com offers insight-and some will surprise you!
Link to original article:
My comment: Of course, the effect on value varies by location – cemeteries for example.
Collateral Underwriter Update from Fannie Mae
Source: Appraisal Buzz
The Buzz staff recently asked Zach Dawson, Director of Collateral Policy and Strategy, Fannie Mae, to provide appraisers with an update on the development of Collateral Underwriter.
A few of the questions:
– Buzz: Can you bring us up to date on CU? What have you learned from this data initiative?
– Buzz: Can you tell us more about AQM and the objectives of that project?
– Buzz: How many appraisers does Fannie Mae refuse to accept appraisals from?
My comment: Definitely hits the Hot Topics!! Nothing much new, but good to directly from Fannie Mae, in writing…
Can Living Near a Starbucks Boost Your Home Value?
It seems that being close to a Starbucks does have a marked effect on home values, particularly in the East, according to a Zillow report.
Between 1997 and 2014, homes within walking distance, or one-quarter mile, of a Starbucks appreciated 96 percent. Compared to the national average for the same time period, 65 percent, it seems having a barista close by is a smart real estate move.
Does a new Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s in Your Neighborhood Increase Your Home Value?
A 2015 study by the real estate information company RealtyTrac analyzed this trend. The study included 4 million homes located in a ZIP code with either a Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s location, finding that average property values in a ZIP code with Trader Joe’s appreciated by about 40 percent since they were purchased, while homes with a Whole Foods in the ZIP code appreciated by nearly 34 percent, which matches the national average increase according to the survey.
… One architect’s proposed solution for low-lying cities that have trouble with flooding. Inspired by amphibious houses, Lira Luis’ concept asks: what if buildings could avoid flooding simply by not touching the ground at all?
As sea levels rise, some low-lying cities have started experimenting with floating buildings and amphibious houses. But one architect has another unlikely sounding suggestion: What if buildings could avoid flooding simply by not touching the ground at all?
Architect Lira Luis thought of the concept as she was working on another installation that happened to be on water and required invisible, easily removable attachments. She started using magnets for the attachments, and when she accidentally held the magnets the wrong way, she noticed that they repelled each other even through a layer of water.
Click here to read. A bit “techie” but fascinating.
Thanks to Matt Cook for posting this Most Interesting Link!!
My comment: This is very relevant for predicted increases in sea levels. I live in a low-lying coastal city in San Francisco Bay. Recently, part of the city’s flood maps were revised to 100 year flood levels, requiring flood insurance if you have a federally insured loan. As usual, all the complaints from owners were about having to buy flood insurance. My house is about 5-6 feet above typical high tide now. When there are very high “King” tides (high tide plus heavy rains), it is closer to high tides. Flood maps for all coastal areas in the country are being revised.