Appraisal News and Business Tips

Posts Tagged appraisal

How accurate is the reported square footage from the tax records in your primary service area?

How accurate is the reported square footage from the tax records in your primary service area?
3/10/14 poll – www.appraisalport.com
Poll Results
– Very accurate for most homes 869 votes – 16%
– Mostly accurate (about 75% of the time) 2495 votes – 55%
– Hit and miss (about 50% of the time). 1470 votes – 27%
– Not reliable (accurate less than 25% of the time). 475 votes – 9%
– The tax records do not usually show the square footage in my area. 127 votes – 2%
Total votes = 5,346
My comment: AMCs seem to be assuming that tax records are more reliable than appraisers’ measurements. WRONG!! I started appraising at an assessor’s office in 1975. We were no more accurate than any other appraisers and never thought that our square footages were exact.
I used to do a lot of relocation appraisals where 2 or 3 appraisers were hired to appraise the same property. Very, very seldom did the appraisers have the same square footage.
A few years ago, a local real estate agent asked me about an appraisal where the sketch did not match the house. Tax records sq.ft. was way off. The appraiser had “fudged” the dimensions to match public records.
Do many appraisers do this to avoid AMC hassles or they were taught to do this by their supervisors?
I have always looked at tax records sq.ft. as a cross check, but never assumed it was more accurate than my measured sq.ft. In some neighborhoods and cities they are accurate and are very unreliable in other areas as they often are not correct.

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Former appraiser gets first pot license in WA

Excerpt:
His company’s name celebrates being too stoned to get off the couch, and he hopes to bring an ultra-potent “super joint” to market.

Meet Sean Green, chief executive of Kouchlock Productions and the proud owner of Washington state’s first legal-marijuana business license.

Green said he got involved in the industry after his decade-long career as an independent real-estate appraiser dried up. He took $10,000 and started Pacific Northwest Medical in Shoreline in 2011, later expanding to Spokane.

He plans to begin by growing 1,200 square feet of starter plants to provide to other growers as they become licensed. He expects to expand to growing marijuana buds for retail, with 30 to 50 employees. For now, he said he will also continue running his medical operations, though the Legislature is considering whether to bring medical marijuana into the same system as recreational pot.

My comment: I love the creative diversification!! Yes, I do have a California medical marijuana card…

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How many appraisers are left?

I like to use California as it has always included trainees. ASC.gov is ok but includes duplicate licenses.

1994: 16,000 total license appraisers
1999 11,000 total license appraisers
2007 20,000 total license appraisers
2014: 12,232 total licensed appraisers

3,343 certified general appraiser;
6,147 certified residential appraiser;
1,906 appraiser licenses and
836 appraiser trainees.
total 12,232 appraisers

Quite a change up and down. Reflecting the mortgage market, of course!!

Posted by appraiser Roy Villa. Thanks!!

There are still way too many left!!

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Appraisers' forecast for biz in 2014

AppraisalPort Polls – 2014 biz forecast
www.appraisalport.com

Do you expect appraisal fees to change in 2014? January 6, 2014
Yes, increase substantially – 384 votes – 7%
Yes, increase slightly – 1,030 votes – 18%
Yes, decrease slightly – 420 votes – 8%
Yes, decrease substantially 230 votes – 4%
No, stay about the same – 3,227 votes – 57%
Not sure – 302 votes – 5%

Total Votes: 5,593

My comment: Looks like the majority of appraisers see stable fees. However, only a few weeks later, I am hearing reports of AMCs dropping fees, especially on broadcast orders.

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I think the business environment for appraisers in 2014 is going to be: (December 30, 2013)
Much better than 2013 – 212 votes – 4%
Better than 2013 – 516 votes – 9%
About the same as 2013 – 1,962 votes – 35%
Worse than 2013 – 1,781 votes – 32%
Much worse than 2013 – 621 votes – 11%
Too early to tell – 548 votes – 10%

Total Votes: 5,640

My comment: Looks like appraisers are unsure about 2014.
They left off my choice – I have no idea!!

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Positive Resolution to Chase AppraiserBlacklisting Saga

 Source: WorkingRE

Excerpts:
Nearly two years have passed since Working RE first reported the story of John Dingeman, an appraiser who faced the difficult choice of either violating USPAP’s Confidentiality Section or suffering the wrath of JP Morgan Chase by refusing. Finally, this holiday season, there is some good news to share.

In March 2012, Dingeman refused Chase’s initial request to discuss an appraisal with the bank because of the Confidentiality Section of USPAP.  Immediately following his refusal, Dingeman was placed on Chase’s Ineligible Appraiser List. Chase then filed a complaint against Dingeman with the Arizona Board of Appraisal. The complaint was promptly dismissed and found to be without merit.

The good news? After battling for over a year, Dingeman recently learned that he has been removed from Chase’s “Ineligible Appraiser List.”  He’ll be the first to tell you that it didn’t happen without a fight.

http://www.workingre.com/blacklist-positive-resolution-chase-saga/

My comment: I am not a lawyer and don’t play one on TV, so I don’t know what it means legally. But, it is great to see an appraiser winning!! I do know that many appraisers refuse to work for Chase because of this and many other problems.

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Info on Fannie's "do not use" appraiser list available

Info on Fannie’s “do not use” appraiser list available

Many thanks to appraiser Dave Towne for sending the email below!!

FannieMae distributed this info below on 1/07/14 ….. shown here just as an FYI, because appraisers cannot access the AQM page.

But you can access the LL-2013-10 which describes some of the negative reporting issues the GSE’s have seen since the UAD was implemented.

Your UAD reports are subject to a higher level procto exam if:
–>you often use the same comp in different reports, but the data you report for that property is different between reports
–>you change the Quality and Condition rating for the same property used as a comp in different reports  (The first time it’s used the Q & C ratings should ‘stick’ thereafter)
–>you are contacted by a GSE reviewer who discusses the above item(s), and you don’t have a credible explanation as to why you have done the above
–>you continue to make the same reporting errors frequently

If you wind up on the GSE’s ‘do not use list’ you are effectively out of business – at least for federally regulated mortgage lending reports.  So “let’s be careful out there!”

Appraiser Quality Monitoring Information
Fannie Mae has published a new web page with information about the recently implemented Appraiser Quality Monitoring (AQM) process. The new AQM web page includes FAQs and a link to the AQM list identifying appraisers whose appraisals will be subject to 100% review by Fannie Mae or whose appraisals are no longer accepted by Fannie Mae. The AQM list is protected content, and approved Fannie Mae sellers/servicers may set up access through Technology Manager.

For more information, refer to Lender Letter LL-2013-10: Appraisal Quality, which reminded lenders of Fannie Mae’s appraiser selection requirements, highlighted several data quality issues, and described the AQM process that Fannie Mae has implemented to identify and monitor issues with individual appraisers.

Direct link to Fannie Appraiser Quality Management (AQM) web page at  www.fanniemae.com/singlefamily/appraiser-quality-monitoring

Dave Towne, AGA, MAA                                             towneappraisals@clearwire.net                           www.towneappraisals.comMount Vernon, WA

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What do I think? This can be good for the appraisal profession!

Appraisers have been complaining for years about the “other” appraisers who are unethical, incompetent, lazy, or stupid. For many clients, since licensing, all appraisers are seen as the same. Why not use someone who gives you what you need – turn time, fee, no problems with underwriting, etc.?

Unfortunately, AMC hassles have driven many very experienced appraisers out of the business, or refusing to do AMC work. This makes the problem more difficult.

Maybe more AMCs will start using appraiser quality rather than fee, turn time, etc. to select their appraisers.

Also, the preference by many AMCs for low fees makes it very tempting to skimp on the time and effort for doing appraisals.

A low fee does not mean that you can do a poor job on an appraisal. I know what it is like to work for a low fee. I tried doing low fee jobs a few times over the years, but found I had a really “bad attitude” about the appraisal and had to force myself to do the same appraisal no matter what the fee. Doing a good appraisal is more important to me than using a low fee as an excuse for doing less work on an appraisal.

It is great to see that Fannie is using objective criteria, rather than a reviewer that gives an appraiser a bad rating, removing them from the list of a major lender. Just like appraising, reviewing is subjective. Particularly with the use of reviewers not familiar with your local market.

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Voluntary Appraiser Disciplinary Action Matrix Based on 2014-15 edition of USPAP

A very interesting document provided by the Appraisal Foundation to state boards. Not mandatory, just information for them. State boards vary dramatically in how they handle discipline. Fortunately, I am in California, which has never had a state board (Governor of CA at that time did not want to increase any expenses, including advisory boards). Investigators are all state employees.

3 examples:

An appraiser states in his certification on an appraisal that he inspected the interior and exterior of the subject property, when in fact he only drove by the property.
As a result, he stated that the subject property was in average condition when it was actually in poor condition and essentially uninhabitable. He did not use any extraordinary assumptions or hypothetical conditions in the assignment. He knew that the lender required an interior inspection.

An appraiser accepted an appraisal assignment in an area where he is not geographically competent, failed to notify the client that he was not geographically competent and failed to take the necessary steps to become competent. As a result, he produced an appraisal that was not supported by market data.

In the sales comparison approach, an appraiser simply adds the adjusted value of the three comparable sales used and divides by three for an indicated value, even though some sales were far better indicators of value than others.

Note: These are the simple examples. There are more commercial appraisal examples and more complicated residential examples.

Click here to download from the Oklahoma state regulator web site.

My comment: Well worth reading. What does your state board do?

Thanks to Long Time Reader and author Doug Smith in Montana for this great link!!

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  Read more!!

If you use XP today, what are your plans regarding upgrading your operating system and internet browser in 2014?

Poll Results from www.appraisalport.com
Go there to participate  the current poll!!
11/11/13

If you use XP today, what are your plans regarding upgrading your operating system and internet browser in 2014?

– I plan to upgrade XP to Windows 7 or 8 and use newer included IE browser, Chrome or Firefox. 573 votes 14%
– I plan to move to another platform such as Apple along with a Safari, Firefox or Chrome browser. 78 votes 1%
– I don’t plan to upgrade XP, but will move to a different browser like Chrome or Firefox. 284 votes 7%
– I’m not going to do anything and hope for the best. 601 votes 7%
– I have already upgraded my system(s). 2,220 votes 56%
– I am not sure what Operating System I use. 201 votes 5%

Total Votes: 3,957

My comment: wow. I am definitely behind!! Still using XP (too cheap to purchase new software and go through the extreme hassle of moving everything to a new computer;> Stuff going back to the early 90s, buying and installing new software, etc. etc. ;> But, I do plan to get a new computer and upgrade to Windows 8 in 2014… sometime. I have been using a macbook pro for 4 years for music and video. No hassles at all. I have a dual boot to PC and have had very few problems with it either, even though I run most of my business software on it. Few crashes and hassles on the pc side. In direct contrast, I spend about 2-3 hours per week, on average, hassling with my two desktop pcs. I guess finally, after 30 years, windows is coming close to the mac in reliability and east of use, so they say. My got first PC in 1980. Nothing but hassles since then.

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What appraisal designation(s) do you currently hold?

Poll results from www.appraisalport.com
Go there to participate  the current poll!!
7/29/13

What designation(s) do you currently hold?
MAI 49 votes .8%
SRA 491 votes 8%
IFA 82 votes 1.4%
ASA 24 votes .04%
Other 227 votes 4%
Two or more of the above. 92 votes 1.6%
AI associate member only 293 votes 5%
None, but state certified residential or general. 4087 votes 70%
None, but state licensed. 417 votes 7%
None, working as a trainee at this time. 50 votes 1.2%

Total Votes: 5,812

My comment: Once again, I am in the minority with an MAI and an SRA. Probably because I am an “old timer” who started before licensing and also because I have an MAI, which is very valuable for commercial appraising. No extra fee for having both designations.

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Review appraiser liability

By attorney Todd F. Stevens

Excerpts:
Here’s a trend in real estate law: attorneys are waking up to the potential liability of review appraisers. Couple this with the common misunderstanding among review appraisers that their risk is less than the author of the original report, and you get a burgeoning new area of litigation. Here’s how to protect yourself.

Another big myth is that reviewers have less liability than the original appraiser. In fact, I have heard some attorneys argue that reviewers have more liability than the original appraiser since reviewers have the “last” opportunity to correct any problems with the report. While I am unaware of any case precedent specifically addressing this issue, logic dictates that the liability of a reviewer and the original appraiser are the same.

My comment: a topic that appraisers who review appraisals don’t like to think about. This article was written several years ago and refers to mortgage brokers, but it applies now. The author defends appraisers.

http://www.keenlaw.com/topics/reviewappraisals.html

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