NAR Appraiser Survey July, 2023

NAR Appraiser Survey July, 2023

In July 2023, NAR Research conducted a survey of all 9,800 appraiser members and 50,000 randomly-selected residential-focused non-appraiser members.

The survey results had a comparison of 2022 and 2023, which was very interesting.

  • Appraiser Topics
  • Greatest challenges in business
  • Lesser challenges with business
  • Valuations
  • Comfort with valuation tools
  • Radius in which appraisals are conducted
  • Radius by area type (rural, small town, urban, resort, suburban)
  • How often asked to conduct appraisals outside geographic area/Property type of expertise

Sample: Greatest challenges in business

(AMCs) in general among their greatest challenges. This year, this option was broken into three separate AMC-related issues. Forty-four percent cite at least one of these, with 28 percent specifically citing AMC requests for revisions.

This year, however, the single greatest challenge, cited by almost half (47 percent), is “fee pressures,” which, based on comments, is also related in many cases to pressure from AMCs. This is up sharply from 27 percent last year.

One-quarter (26 percent) cite technology fees (not an option in 2022). Appraisers are less likely this year to cite expanding regulations/interpretations of regulations, lender requirements, pressure from real estate agents/brokers, and liability concerns.

The 21 percent who cite other challenges are most likely to cite lack of business/slow market, rising interest rates, low fees, and to reiterate pressure from AMCs.

A very good graphic is included for each section.

To read the report, click here

My comments: Read the appraiser sections in the long report. Fortunately, appraiser results are in the first section. I read the full survey. Most of the questions were for all NAR members, both appraisers and non-appraiser members. Some may be of interest to you. Much of the appraiser results were what we already sort of suspected, but it is good to see actual survey results.

NAR Appraisal Survey 2022

Appraisal Business Tips 

Humor for Appraisers

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NOTE: Please scroll down to read the other topics in this long blog post on  GSE Appraisal Independence Update, Private money lender appraials, ADUs, adjustments, unusual homes, mortgage origination

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Appraising Solar Panels

Appraising Solar Panels

By Mark Buhler

Excerpts: You drive up to the property. There they are, on the roof: those shiny black rectangles that are just about to turn a simple assignment into a headache. What to do? Put the car in reverse and slowly back away? Call the client and have them re-assign the order?

Those are certainly options. But in today’s tight market, with orders as scarce as hens’ teeth, let’s explore some other approaches to solving this problem.

First: How do appraisers value any amenity of a property?

Appraisal 101 would suggest the matched pairs analysis. So our first task is to find a property with solar panels that’s similar to the subject.

That search quickly comes to a screeching halt. (I can almost smell the brake dust.) There are no comps with solar panels in the area. So when we type the report, a comment like this might slip past the reviewer and underwriter: “A thorough search of the subject’s marketing area revealed a scarcity of sales comparables with solar panels.”

So far, so good. Now let’s continue with that reasoning: “Due to a lack of comparables with solar panels, no contributory value can be extracted.”

This supports a zero (0) adjustment, right?

Well … maybe. A savvy underwriter or reviewer might wonder why the appraiser didn’t consider the cost and income approaches…

To read more click here

My comments: Good, practical advice. The article is worth reading. Solar for homes is everywhere now. I recently spoke with Mark. I asked some technical questions about financing solar and electric companies lowering what they pay to homeowners with solar. He knew everything! Taking a webinar or class from him is definitely worth the price. He has been teaching the classes for a long time.

Complex Residential Properties for Appraisers

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Appraiser Gets Subpoena – What to Do 3-17-23

Appraiser Gets Subpoena – What to Do

Excerpts: As an appraiser, you don’t have to be sued or be facing a lawsuit to find yourself on the receiving end of a subpoena—staring down a lawyer who is peppering you with questions.

Appraisers are often subpoenaed in legal disputes involving third parties, usually being tied to the dispute for no other reason than having appraised a property involved in the dispute. If the appraiser is not a party to the lawsuit, then typically they are being subpoenaed for documents and/or being called as an expert witness, sometimes without pay, to testify regarding a past appraisal.

First, subpoenas are court orders and you must not ignore the subpoena or you will find yourself in contempt of court. Tim Andersen, MAI, MSc, USPAP instructor and CEO of TheAppraisersAdvocate.com, says that if an appraiser doesn’t want to comply with a subpoena they can try to fight it, but that requires hiring a lawyer, which can be costly and has its own challenges. “One approach is to protest the subpoena to the judge indicating that your records are private, and requesting that your records be treated as confidential and not be made part of the public record. The judge, however, will do whatever s/he chooses to do,” reports Andersen.

To read more, click here

My comments: This is an excellent article on this topic. Read it to find out the issues. If you lost this link later, when you need help, Google “Dealing with a Subpoena Workingre”. This is specifically for appraisers. If you find other links online, they are not as useful.

I have never been served with a subpoena, but this is a regular topic among appraisers. I get calls occasionally from appraisers about this.

Appraisal Business Tips 

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Fannie Mae: No Appraisals Required? 3-10-23

Fannie Mae: Appraisals are no longer the default option: Value Acceptance replaces Appraisal Waiver

Fannie Mae updated its Selling Guide on March 1 to include more options for property valuations, saying that they are “moving away from implying that an appraisal is a default requirement.”  Those options include value acceptance (formerly appraisal waivers), value acceptance plus property data and hybrid appraisals.

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Fannie Mae – No Appraisals Required – The End of Appraisers?

Hamp Thomas 12 minute video – my favorite commentary on this issue!

Fannie Mae took a direct shot at appraisers today with the announcement of changes in their Selling Guide. Two options for the future, both of which do great harm to the appraisal industry.

First, “third party” inspections. Appraisal trainees aren’t good enough, so now we will have unlicensed inspectors going through the homes of unsuspecting homeowners. And, with this inspection a traditional appraisal is no longer a requirement for the mortgage loan.

Secondly, the 3rd party inspection is sent to a licensed appraiser. FNMA wants an appraiser’s signature so the appraiser can be held responsible if there’s any problem in the future. Both options say they are good for consumers and both options are filled with fabrications and misinformation. At the end of it all, it’s about control and profits. Why trainees can’t provide the data is simply because big banking and AMC’s don’t make profit from the inspection part of the process.

If appraisers don’t stand up and say no, right now, the running joke of the appraisal industry could be gone in five years; well, it just very well may come true. Ok appraisers, it’s time to speak out and stand together.

The only reason for these changes are about a piece of the 11 TRILLION dollar mortgage market. And that’s the way it is – March 1, 2023.

To watch the video, click here

My comments: Worth watching the video. Call to Action. Hamp is an excellent speaker and teacher.

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Fannie Statement: “Value acceptance + property data has arrived”

“This new option reduces cycle times and may reduce borrower costs, promotes safety and soundness by obtaining a current observation of the subject property, and provides operational simplicity and certainty at time of loan application.“

To read what Fannie says, click here

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Link to Fannie SEL-2023-02: Selling Guide Updates PDF

To read more, click here

My comments: Lenders Are Happeeee! Those darn appraisers and appraisals have always taken too much time. Fannie sells their loans to investors. The more loans, the more money Fannie makes. I did not include links to what the happy lenders say. You already know.Clear the Tracks!

Fannie Wants Desktop Appraisals

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What Appraisers Wish Real Estate Agents Understood

What Appraisers Wish Real Estate Agents Understood

McKissock Survey

Question: “What’s one thing you wish real estate agents knew about the appraisal process?

Top 10 most common answers

  1. The appraisal process is complex and takes time
  2. Appraisers do not assign value
  3. Appraisers are unbiased and must follow guidelines
  4. Appraisers need their input and cooperation
  5. How to select appropriate sales comps
  6. The importance of providing accurate and detailed info in their listings
  7. How to determine correct GLA (gross living area)
  8. How renovations and upgrades affect value
  9. How to prepare for the appraisal appointment
  10. FHA/VA/USDA guidelines

To read all the appraiser comments, click here

My comments: The appraiser comments are worth reading. I will always remember when, many years ago, a top local real estate agent asked me why I was driving around taking photos of homes. Of course, most people confuse real estate agents with appraisers. We have done a very poor job of telling the general public what we do and that we are are objective and unbiased. We need a good Appraiser PR Campaign!

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AMC Alleged Violations of Appraiser Independence Requirements

Fastapp AMC Alleged Violations of AIR (Appraiser Independence Requirements)

Excerpts: The following court documents in the case Naftali Horowitz v. xxx, Fastapp AMC founder v. Fastapp AMC president, confirm what appraisers have been saying all along, that if you want high-volume AMC work, you have to lower your fees to 1980’s level, have 24 hour turn times, and, above all, be a number hitter.

Horowitz claimed that Andrews engaged in conduct constituting potential violations of the Appraiser Independence Requirements under the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010 (“Dodd-Frank Act”), including unlawfully seeking to influence an appraiser to encourage a targeted value to facilitate the making or pricing of the transaction in violation of 15 U.S.C. § 1639e(b)(3).

… it began to become apparent to Andrews that Horowitz was not complying with appraisal independence standards. Instead, Horowitz would personally select one of a small number of his preferred appraisers for any given appraisal request… It thus became apparent to Andrews that Horowitz was engaged in a widespread scheme in violation of federal law by assigning appraisals to appraisers who would appraise values at requested values in exchange for order flow.

To read more plus over 50 appraiser comments, click here

My comment: Copies of the emails tell the story of “cooperative” appraisers getting most of the assignments. Very similar to the old mortgage broker days. A primary reason for Dodd-Frank.

AMC Fined for Appraisal Order Blast Violation

Appraisal Business Tips 

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FHA Handbook 4000.1 Appraisal Changes

FHA Handbook 4000.1 Appraisal Changes

By Dan Bradley

Excerpts: On January 18, 2023, HUD issued an announcement regarding revisions made to Handbook 4000.1. According to the announcement, the revisions included “enhancements and revisions to existing guidelines and various technical edits.”

The most significant of these revisions was the elimination of the requirement to include the 1004MC form as an attachment to the appraisal report.

Changes to the Handbook also include several other minor, but nevertheless meaningful, edits and clarifications to FHA appraisal requirements, including:

Under “Attic Observation Requirements,” a clarification was made regarding the appraiser’s obligation to “safely” access the attic. The language requiring a minimum “head and shoulders” access into the attic was deleted.

Under “Crawl Space Observation Requirements,” significant revisions were made, including removal of a bullet point list of MPR/MPS criteria for the crawl space. Also, language requiring a minimum “head and shoulders” access into the crawl space was deleted.

The changes outlined in the Handbook may be implemented immediately but must be implemented for FHA cases assigned on or after April 18, 2023.

To read more, click here

My comments: Many thanks to McKissock for telling us what we need to know. Includes a link to the “redline” version of 4000.1 so you can skip over most of it. Scroll down to “Updates, Revisions, Notifications” to get the redline versions.

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Revised FHA Handbook 4000.1 effective 9/14/15. Are you ready for the changes? Get the facts!!

Appraisal Business Tips 

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Top Ten Reasons Why It Is Great to be an Appraiser!

Top Ten Reasons Why It Is Great to be an Appraiser!

10. Dazzle your friends with your knowledge of external obsolescence.

9. The wonderful world of rats, bats, and spiders.

8. Be a part of the profession blamed for the collapse of the savings and loan industry.

7. See places in people’s houses that usually require a search warrant to access.

6. Arouse the suspicion of an entire neighborhood when inspecting comparable sales.

5. Chance to really irritate annoying real estate salespeople.

4. Walk around holding a clipboard just like “Skip” down at the Jiffy Lube.

3. Spend hours writing volumes of supporting documentation to justify the market value of a property you already decided on when you pulled into the driveway.

2. See that some people really do hang those black velveteen pictures of Elvis on their living room walls.

1. Be one of a handful of people who know that USPAP is not a medical term.

Many thanks to reader Joe Ibach, MAI, for this great list! He doesn’t know the source…seems like it is one of those email/send/resends now floating around the Internet!

Appraisal Business Tips 

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Practical Tips for Working With AMCs

Appraisers Share Their Best Tips for Working with AMCs

By McKissock

Excerpts: In a nutshell, our survey respondents recommended that you should:

1) do your research and get to know the AMCs,

2) build a relationship with them,

3) treat the relationship as a partnership, and

4) prioritize communication.

Build a relationship

“Be personable so they remember you.”

“Make yourself known by being efficient as well as timely with your reports. Be friendly—even when you feel like the UW’s question may be redundant or was already answered in the report. I promise you that this will make you known in your area.”

“Have a very responsive credo. Keep them up to date in every step of the report so that they can keep the Lender (and the Buyer/Seller/Realtor/Closing Attorneys when applicable) all in the loop on the progress of the report. Remember when they look good and trust you—you look good

Communicate, communicate, communicate!

“Update the orders quickly.”

“Keep them informed.”

“Over communicate!”

“Always communicate—even if it feels like too much. Our office updates AMCs on every scheduling attempt with details, every inspection appointment set and completion, and any materials needed ASAP in the assignment. They really appreciate it, and it ensures you can complete assignments on time as you had planned (no one likes waiting for a legal description only to have it show up on your day of 4 inspections!). It’s truly a win-win.”

“Stay in communication. Appraisers tend to get annoyed with constant emails from the AMC about inspection date, completion, report submission, etc. I make it a point to update them and answer their emails ASAP. In my opinion, that’s good business. And if you do need more time, more info, they are more willing to oblige.”

To read more, click here

My comments: Read this blog post with practical tips from practicing appraisers. It can help you get more business from AMCs (and other lender clients). Savvy appraisers I know who mostly do non-lender work also have a limited number of carefully vetted AMCs they work for, plus a few local lenders and “private” lenders.

Advertising Disclaimer: McKissock is one of my regular email advertisers. I keep my advertising clients and this newsletter’s content separate. But, McKissock’s blog posts are short, well written, and popular with readers, so I include them regularly.

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Practical real estate appraisal writing tips for AMC questions

Reconsideration of value and Appraisers

Appraisal Business Tips 

Humor for Appraisers

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Appraisers: What should you have in your car?

Appraisers: What should you have in your car?

Excerpt: Here are a few items:

  • Screwdriver: A screwdriver has many uses. You can use it to take the cover off a crawl space entry panel, check wooden structural members for rot or insect damage, remove an electrical outlet cover to check for insulation in the walls, etc.
  • Voltage detector: To determine whether wires are live.
  • Ice pick: To check for termites or wood rot.
  • Magnet: To determine whether old pipes are made of iron or lead.
  • Mace or pepper spray: To defend yourself, especially if you’re appraising REO and foreclosure properties.
  • Bug spray: To protect yourself from mosquito bites, ticks, etc.
  • Spare clothes and footwear: Including an extra coat or jacket, hat, and boots—especially if you work in rural areas.

To read more, click here

My comments: Good tips! I definitely need to add some of the items to my car, especially dog repellent, which is not on the list. I have been bitten by dogs. I left the homes and contacted the lender. Don’t know if they got their loan and did not care. Once two large Dobermann dogs broke down a trailer door. I barely got into my car in time.

This was originally posted on McKissock’s Appraisal Blog, but that link was not working.

Appraisers – The Past and The Future

Appraisal Business Tips 

Humor for Appraisers

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