Financing that Works for Homes and Small Businesses

Appraisal Management Companies and Their Grief Factor

‘An appraisal management company (AMC) is “…an outsourcing solution that is paid by a lender-client to act on the lender/client’s behalf to engage real estate appraisers and to perform the administrative functions involved in the appraisal ordering, tracking, and delivery process.[1]  The need for mortgage professionals to demonstrate appraisal independence began in 2008 and 2009 with the adoption of the Appraisal Independence Rules and the Home Valuation Code of Conduct (HVCC), which also precluded those who made loans from direct involvement in the selection of appraisers.  These rules were the impetus for the growth of AMCs, and many speculate that the interim final appraisal rule will ensure that these companies continue to thrive.’

‘The presence of AMCs in the industry serves an important purpose but is sometimes controversial.  Members of the appraisal industry and professional organizations such as the Appraisal Institute have stated the following concerns about AMCs:

  • AMCs typically pay reduced fees to the individual appraisers who perform the work.
  • AMCs create unfair competition for independent appraisers who are trying to earn a fair fee for their appraisals.
  • AMCs prioritize low fees and quick turn-around over producing accurate appraisals.’

Here’s a very important point of distinction for us practitioners:

  • Some lenders have established their own AMCs, thereby violating the requisite distinction between those who originate loans and those that perform valuations. [1]
Lastly, the interim final rule was written by the privately owned Federal Reserve which is always less than desirable.

[1] Schurman, Jeff.  “Defining Appraisal Management.”  The Appraisal Vendor Management Association.  26 Sept. 2006, page 2. http://www.tavma.org/Articles/Defining%20Appraisal%20Magt_092206.pdf

[2] Examples of lender-owned AMCs include Quantrix, owned by JP Morgan Chase, Finiti, owned by Citigroup, and Rels owned by Wells Fargo

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