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Appraiser Rater: AMC Ratings by Appraisers

As suggested by readers, this space is designated for appraisers to comment on their experiences with AMCs that they have worked with. Whether it’s a major or private AMC, a good experience or bad, please share with your fellow appraisers. Include fee expectations, turn time expectations, unusual requests, flow of business, reporting requirements, ease of technology platform, payment and pressure issues or any other criteria. This is intended as a free exchange of information to help appraisers make informative decisions about the AMCs they work with. Please keep all comments constructive, factual and fair.

Please note that Working RE and OREP do not substantiate or verify any of the comments posted here.

602 Responses to Appraiser Rater: AMC Ratings by Appraisers

  1. Retired Appraiser says:

    Stop wasting your time appraisers and dreaming of a better day. Face the facts that you are being squeezed out of business. There is nothing that anyone can do about it.

    Either you left the business early on and saved yourselves from bankruptcy or you’ll learn the hard way (through bankruptcy).

    Grow a brain guys and get out of this flea bitten career??? while you still have 1/100 of your original bank account left.

  2. unknown says:

    Ok, Thats great Mr fed up and paul, now lets post info on how much these AMC’s you rated are truly paying you on their fees. This can be helpful and advantagious in many ways to all in this business. Im sure the AMC’s wont like it but who cares.

  3. PAUL says:

    ITS TRUE AMCS AND THE HVCC ARE RIUNING APPRAISAL!!! RELS AND LSI ARE THE WORST WITH THE RECONS PRESSURE-IT IS A WAY OF GETTING AN INFLATED APPRAISAL! PVC MURCOR ACTUALLY SENDS OUT INSTRUCTIONS WITH THE ENGAGMENT ON HOW TO DO THE APPRASIAL ! THERE ARE TOO MANY AMC’S THAT ONLY CARE ABOUT LOWEST FEES AND QUICKEST TAT (ALL OF THEM). WHY SHOULD THE AMC MAKE MORE MONEY THAN THE APPRAISER THAT DID THE WORK? I AGREE, NO ONE CARES ABOUT WHAT HAPPENS TO US.

  4. unknown says:

    H, cat,scott, p. joseph, Boondock and the rest. How pithetic, shameful and self-absorbant. Lets read the heading on this forum… Amc’s, rating and fees is what we should be DISCLOSING not complaining about. IF YOUR AN APPRAISER AND WANT TO COMPLAIN AND WRITE YOUR MISERY, THEN GET A HEAD SHRINK. WE CAN ACCOMPLISH MORE BY STATING SOME EFFECTIVE INFORMATION INSTEAD. Otherwise get out of your hiding space and lets begin posting our honest AMC FEES by state and AMC experiences/ratings. By doing so we will simply give your fellow appraisers the advantage and put the AMC’s “low ball thinking” and there own competition at some disadvantage for now. Lets stop holding back our fears of loosing business to other appraiser, stick together and put it all out there for now. There will be plenty of work to go around . Anyhow, Id rather do 5 appraisals at $350.00 than 7-8 at $250.00 any way. Here’s a reality check. Appraisers are the only individuals being financially affected by this. Its ethicaly wrong but legal. Considering, no politician, bank, investor, homeowner will care to stick there nose in this issue because it is not affecting them. The only way to better this is to begin, talking, networking and informing each other of better opportunities regarding AMC’S AND FEES. AMC’s NEED appraisers, and when they begin loosing appraisers to their own competition, their only atlernative will be to increase there fees to gain apprasiers!!!!! Just as Lawyers and Accountants know what there going fees are and stick to them, we should begin to do the same.. Honesty, budding, communication and networking is what will help us otherwise we shall accept whats come.

  5. Boondock slave says:

    As and appraiser working in a rural area i have seen it all. AMC’s hiring appraisers from as far away as 300 miles to complete a report for $250.

    In New York licensing led to a glut of new appraisers and thus allowed the lenders to spread the weath around. This assured that no
    one would be able to make a decent living or save for a rainy day.

    Although new regs have been implemented lenders,AMC’s and others have been hard at work making sure that appraisers cannot hire or grow their businesses by playing us one against another.

    We are under-represented and until that changes we can expect more of the same.

    May be as time goes on there will be so few appraisers left that those remaining will have more bargaining power.

    I don’t think I’ll make it. Good luck to those of you who do !!!!

  6. P. Joseph Siematkowski says:

    As we as an industry move forward we must keep in mind that within the real estate field we appraisers are the lowest in the food chain.

    We have been blamed for all of wall street’s corruption and cratering of the housing market.

    With trillions of dollars lost lenders are now attempting to recoup these loses by exacting minutes amounts of monies from the lowly appraiser. No one is coming to save us !!!!!!!

  7. Scott Wishart says:

    I’ve been a licensed appraiser since 1996. A retail banker for 12 years before that. Worked with nearly every AMC imaginable over the years. They’re all in it for the same thing we are, maximize amount of $ they can earn. Though in their case it seems more like a shady skimming/kickback type operation. How much are YOU willing to pay, or refund, or kickback, to the AMC to receive assignments?

    Here’s something I haven’t read much about here. the fact is….
    Lenders LOVE the HVCC, for the mandatory AMC “firewall”. Banks had a choice: Either A: close down their appraisal ordering/tracking/compliance department, saving hundreds of thousands of dollars in salaries and benefits. or B: “spin off” their appraisal ordering department into “independent AMC’s” and turn them into a profit center! It’s a win-win all the way around for the banks (again)!

    I currently only accept work through one AMC, RIMS. With RIMS they send out requests for bids, typically you have 1/2 a day to submit your bid. I always bid full fee (for my market) and have always received full fee (from the originating lender not RIMS). RIMS is truly a “pass-through” type AMC. I have never paid RIMS any fees. This is how it should work. I am paid every cent of my bid, nobody (but my rich Uncle Sam) takes a cut of my hard earned dollars.

    My experience with the rest is like everyone elses. Ridiculously low fees, short TAT’s, and moronic AMC staff.

  8. Cat says:

    Fine, lets name, names, Appraiserloft in San Diego. This company states on their website how appraisers do not need to send invoices or keep track of what’s owed to them because they do that automatically and send checks every 15-30 days. That is an out right lie. They hold on to your money, to keep you in their back pocket in case they need something else from you. It takes 3-6 months to get paid on any individual appraisal and not without a lot of begging for it. I won’t accept anymore work from them and neither will every other appraiser I personally know because of the same experience. How is that ethical? How is that customary or reasonable? How come the State Agency that licenses us can’t help? Who does Andrew Cuomo think he is? He does not know this industry!

  9. h says:

    Here is another one to beware of. It is called “Appraiser’s Advantage”, they charge a yearly fee of $349 and promise they have plenty of work in your area, and not enough appraisers. They promise you a full fee for your work, and then after they get your annual fee, you get no orders, and they won’t return your calls.

  10. unknown says:

    I really dont get this forum…all I hear is complaints about fees and turntime , how we should unite as appraiser, but I only see two postings regarding fees and AMC ratings…what are the others afraid of, competition?? How can we move forward if every man/women is looking out for there own…If we all post our true fees per amc, state as well as ratings, maybe we can get a step ahead of ourselves and begin taking some control. There is no unity in this appraisal business, we are still in a competive state of mind… lets start posting!

  11. George says:

    FYI (if it is news) there’s a scam going on with something called AMC Appraisal Network (1-888-519-4447). They promise appropriate fees (NJ _$300-350) and 1 order guaranteed within a month of applying. So I bit for $129…and NOTHING happened. There are no call backs…orders; just wonder at the cost of the website. Pass it on.

  12. Ms. D says:

    I’m afraid AMC’s are here to stay. So, we have to figure out how to live with them and ultimately (hopefully) make them work for us instead of feeling as though they are the enemy.

    As to the original purpose of this blog:
    Rels is good –not the highest fees but reasonable. Excellent time in paying and direct deposit.
    I have heard good about LSI, as well.

    I still have a few lawyers and tax grievance work here and there + a little AMC work and I am hanging in there.

    Lori Davenport–Thank you for all your information and opinions. Yes, I totally agree that Brokers should not be doing BPO’s—it’s technically illegal. APO’s (Appraiser Price Opinion) should be created and utilized.

    Dan–Fantastic idea! AMC’s should only be able to charge a set percentage (i.e. 20%) of the total fee. So that if they are going to tack it onto the appraisal fee at least the appraiser gets a reasonable fee by default of the AMC’s greed. Again great idea!

    Also, all states should pass a law that says appraisers have to put their fee in the report–that would help us out greatly. Getting the public angry would make changes come more quickly.
    I have had many conversations with those that have recently had appraisals (that I did not do) and they came out and asked me why appraisal fees have recently gone up so much–up to $500-$775??? I let them know it would be luck if the appraiser (who did ALL the work) got even $280 of it. I did not do the appraisal and so I’m not obligated to keep quiet about this “dirty little secret.” There should be transparency in regard to all the fees a borrower pays for any real estate transaction.

    But none of these laws or regulations of AMC’s will happen until we get representation in Washington DC. Getting the public angry over inflated fees that do not even go to the professional doing the work will do some good, but ultimately we need A REALLY LOUD VOICE in DC.
    Who shall be our voice?
    And how much are we willing to pay to support that voice?

  13. unknown says:

    E-appraisite= fees succck ..staff sucks .. paid 160-200 for 1 family, 250 for 2-4 fam –took a few and requested to raise fee… 300 for 1 fam 475 for 2. they said I would be place from prefered status to fee status… never saw another order again…

    LSI– fees . blahhh..great staff but was told 225 for 1 fam and 350 for 2-3 fam.. they can not pay any more than this??? lots of extras. a little less hassling with turn times.

    Quantrix…. pays somewhat better than LSI…easy staff to get along with.. found them to give the least issues with turn time but very quick to cut you off if you get behind with turn time…(no security in this business).

    imortgage… ridiculous fees… they only allow you 3 hours to accept reports before it is canceled…???

    not sure about landsafe… heard they pay somewhat better…but no longer accepting appraisers?? 3 years now??

    tried some unknown amcs… some never received any orders after hours of paper work application…some turned out to be appraisal companys pretending to come off as amcs offering similar fees.. pithetic and shameful to this industry…

    merc network… pay best… takes a small fee 13.00 but overall worth it. little hassle with turn time, I beleive they understand the works ins and out of this industry on an appraisers business perspective regarding P&L , expenses and survival at first hand better than others. Give them plenty of credit for trying..

    ….These are still unfeasable fees to stay in business considering the additonal expenses we now encounter along with lack of paid benifits and slow times period that should be absorbed with reasonable and higher paying feasable pay. I feel the banks should be paying the amc’s for services and amc’s should leave the appraisers fees and collections up to the Individual Appraisers… no reason to “shake down” appraiser for there hard worked income.

  14. Stan The Man says:

    OK, We all wrote letters and made all kinds of comments about AMCs. But where is the List and rating for the AMC and what they pay. Until we bring this list so all can see it we will all keep getting screwed by bad AMCs.

  15. Also, when I first started accepting AMC work the fees and client expectations were reasonable… Now, fees are lower and clients want more work for less pay.

  16. I am in Cook County, Illinois and I was told by one AMC that we have the one of the highest concentration of appraisers in the US. I believe that this is contributing to our appraisals woes; AMCs can pay low fees and still get an appraiser to accept the work. If you live in an area with fewer appraisaers, count your blessings (and your higher fees!).

  17. Terry Shannon says:

    I only read a smattering of the above comments, so I may be repeating some things stated in them. If so I apologize.

    AMCs have long been the bane of many appraiser’s existence, but it has thus far, for me at any rate, been a losing battle.

    In the Indianapolis market, there is little choice. Virtually all of the major lenders in this market use AMCs.

    The ONLY advantage I see coming from working through an AMC is that they do serve as a middle man, the appraiser does not have to deal directly with irate loan originators, buyers, sellers, realtors, etc. Any such calls I get, I refer back to the AMC.

    But the cost to us in lower fees is hardly worth it. If one works exclusively for AMCs, one must complete perhaps 50% more work per week/month in order to earn a living. And, as alluded to above, there is the added pressure of expected 24 to 48 hour turn times and all the “corrections” that come from their reviewers who often invent things to nettle their appraisers with either to justify their existence or just to salve their egos.

    Keep in mind that many AMC reviewers are essentially failed appraisers.

    Under current circumstances, appraisers have become pretty much the low man (or woman) on the totem pole. We get little respect and have virtually no political clout. We are, more often than not, the scapegoat.

    Taking almost any appraisal class for continuing ed basically serves as a lesson in all the ways we can lose our licenses, get sued and/or get arrested. Appraisers essentially have no advocates. No one advocates on our behalf – not the Institute, nor any other organization. All they do is serve as a conduit for all the rules and regs that come along ad nauseam from Fannie, Freddie, HUD, VA, the AQB, the ASB, USPAP, etc. It is rare that anything is ever challenged on our behalf.

    The rise of AMCs has further stripped us of any power or respect we may have at one time had. Now, we are told to bend over, and all we’re expected to ask is “How far?”

  18. ventura county appraiser says:

    after 30 years in the business, i have seeen alot of developments in the appraisal profession. much has been driven by circumstances in the market, ie licensing, e/o insurance, merging of professional appraisal groups, various appraisal standards etc. this latest development of “AMC’s” is a reaction to what the RE market has gone through in the last 3-4 years. Looking forward i really don’t see the AMC continuing to be a viable function when the RE market returns to a more normal condition. Right now they can offer LOW fees and quick TAT with HEAVY handed underwriting because market volumne is low and some appraisers have little choice. However, when the market returns to normal, AMCs will not be able to handle the step up in appraisal volumne. bottom line I really don’t see how AMC’s will survive when a normal market returns. I recently got a request from a AMC that wanted an appraisal on a multi-million dollar beach property in Malibu, CA for $225 and 3 day turnaround. Pretty laughable….i quoted them a fee of $2,000+ and 3-4 weeks. i have not heard from them for weeks but I’m sure they got somebody to do it…….now that’s even more laughable

  19. Carin says:

    Honestly, I didn’t start out hating the AMCs. Really I didn’t. I understand some of their cost of doing business. They have to market and find new accounts. They have to review reports. They have to track orders. There IS a cost.

    BUT, after seeing the way they operate, i have increasingly become discouraged by the entire industry.

    These “reviews” they do are jokes. I am amazed if I get a report through with out corrections. Their “client requirements” (let’s face it, they’re all being sold to the same giant), change with the wind, and have about that much logic. One company required every direction and treet type had to be spelled out. Another would make me clarify if the subject had a basement, after it was clearly in the grid that it did not. Response: “add a comment about no basement in the addendum”. WHAT??? They have $5/hour idiots that must be REQUIRED to send reports back to meet some lame quota.

    The fees are insulting. We were asked to appraise an 8,000 sq. ft. house on 11 acres (ummmm, can we say NO comps?) for the astronomical fee of….$225. And sadly that is not even close tot the worst scenario we’ve encountered.

    We have to turn in reports in 48 hours, and we have been informed, “that’s actual hours, not business” and we are REQUIRED to turn in reports on Saturdays and Sundays. And the clock keeps ticking on holidays like Chrsitmas and Thanksgiving. We saaw a house the day before Thanksgiving, and were questioned why the report was not submitted on that Friday. AUGH!

    Loan officers and RE agents still belly ache that their flipped house won’t meet the sales price. We’re asked to “consider” 10 other properties in exclusive areas that are twice the size. And then, when we don’t change the value, we can get black-listed. Oh Yeah!

    CitiMortgage has a list of appraisers they won’t use, and for no reason spelled out in the HVCC, they can decide to add you to the list because of “the comps that were used.”

    Lenders are just running their own AMCs now, using their own appraisers and skirting the entire purpose of the HVCC…and the worthless HVCC allows it.

    I really question what is going to happen to the industry. I think it will look completely different in 5 years. Most AMCs don’t allow trainees to sign, and for the meager fees we get, having a trainee isn’t worth it. Plus, why WOULD anyone want to get in the industry now? It’s not worth it. We’re getting paid crappy and slow, we pay for our own insurance, we don’t get vacations (at least not paid like regular jobs….like the one I quit for this one…sigh), and now we’re treated like minions who have to jump becasue some AMC said so.

    And as much as I am sick and tired of the AMCs, I don’t know how to have a profitable business without them…. don’t really know how to do it WITH them, but I digress.

    Rock Hard place

    Well, I didn’t even rate the AMC’s, just whined about them….
    Oh well, that’s about all I can muster today.

  20. Jay says:

    So long as we are beholden to the lenders for work we will be annoyances to them, held hostage by the threat of no new jobs. That’s the real pressure HVCC doesn’t address.

    It was my experience that some AMCs at least were decent to work with, and as supplements to other client work, until those all died last year – or were shut off by HVCC. Landsafe was decent (“the Cadillac of AMCs” as I heard it called) up until ~last June, when BoA started sending a good proportion of their jobs God knows where. Now volume is slim and the new review system discourages an attempt to defend yourself by penalizing you longer if you do.

  21. Seattle Appraiser says:

    Like you all I watched my hard earned business evaporate due to the HVCC. I recently applied to a few AMC’s. What a frustrating experience! Most are nothing more then fronts for placing orders with the already approved appraisers, too bad for me my clients didn’t turn to this type of AMC instead of subjecting us/themselves to the low fee AMC lottery system.
    Not to reiterate what is already mentioned on this blog my additional frustration is that the AMC underwriters have various “opinions” on E&Os that range from where they want comments on the 1004, how they want the form filled out, which boxes to check, when you can put NA, and exactly how they want addendum information stated.
    Form filling protocol!!!
    THEN they grade and rate you on this crapola. To them a good appraisal is nothing more then a form that is filled out right, turned fast, and hits the number.
    We are the mushroom, kept in the dark, feed you know what. When we stop getting orders from them they can blame it on the fact that you didn’t check the driveway box a “no-no” for one underwriter or that you did check the driveway box a “no-no” for the other lender.
    In a call to the “underwriting” department about a subject condo project with a high precent of REO/short sales I was told NOT to meantion the current listings of REO’s … I now have an unfavorable rating with this AMC.
    Has anyone else faced this frustration?

  22. salvato says:

    IT IS WHAT IT IS! STOP BLAMING THE HVCC! The HVCC Rule is NOT the problem. As we know it, this rule was forced upon FNMA, FHFA and BANKS. The HVCC was created to eliminate influence and pressure. Unfortunately, this rule was also created and implemented by the same organizations and individuals who are / would financially, profitably and politically benefit from it—–AMC’s, banks and politicians(from political endorsements?). The problem…we fixed one problem, but created another…AMC’s have become a loophole for Banks to profit, reduce liability on their end and pass it on to the Appraiser. Banks made it clear, their to big to fail(tarp), they are lending the money, they run the market, as long as it is “legal” they are the bosses and call the shots. The majority of these AMC’s are fully or partially owned by these same banks. Some of these AMC’s are also involved in the TITLE / CLOSING services. Some have reportedly manipulated homeowners into utilizing their TITLE services, ATTORNEY’S and of coarse APPRAISERS. This is one of many reasons the code was favorably amended (announcement 09-01) allowing lender’s ownership of AMC’s. For these reasons appraisers have no chance– lawsuits, standard FHA customary fees, etc. etc., would be useless. WHY would anyone with this “legal” power and control give it all up?

    AMC’s are a legal business and would be a productive one if done right, but what is irresponsible, unproductive and should be considered illegal is their business practice. Bank/AMC’S are forcing appraisers and homeowners to go through these selected AMC’s for business and loan services. They’re profiting from the appraisers services and discreetly charging homeowners a higher cost than what would be customary. Is this not a form of monopolizing, fraud/non-disclosure? From these discreet charges, the Bank/AMC’s are controlling and paying the appraisers an unfeasible fee and no benefits to do the work. Is this not a form of labor law corruption or taxation without representation at its best? AMC fees(splits) could have been absorbed by the banks themselves instead of stealing it from the appraisers income. After all it is their money they are lending. Does the IRS/GOVT take a split fee for accountant’s services? Who pays the IRS for their services? Considering these are irresponsible or corrupt forms of practice, the appraisal industry and support organizations seem powerless to make any difference.

    HVCC rule does NOT state they must utilize AMC’s. Pressure and negative influence could have simply been eliminated by having banks create their own independent non-commissioned appraisal review department to “blindly” order appraisals, provide better trained underwriters and fairly hold all parties equally responsible for unethical behavior (Its called a check and balance system). They could have simply eliminated the needless expense of an AMC and/or created a not for profit, market specific, rotating appraiser network ordering system set up by appraisal software companies /or banks, charging a small annual fee paid by appraiser and lenders whom sign up. This system could have been utilized to distribute orders and leave appraisers responsible to make/collect there own feasible service fees (which would eliminate the AMC payroll costs we are absorbing) and hand in a quality report which is what an appraiser should be qualified and trained to do. This would also have created more Bank, Broker & Appraisal trainee jobs having no effect on the then existing AMC’s. BANK AMC’s business practice’s are really not the most productive, proactive and beneficial solution to the real problem. There are many other alternatives, but the financial benefits for banks, AMC’S and politicians are too tremendous.

    Appraisers are now facing profitable/unfeasible fee cuts, unrealistic turn times, lack of benefits, lack of job security (if turn time and fees are not met.), additional schooling /hours requirements, lack of income and the loss of assistant appraisers to absorb the slow months. R.E. transactions are not closing due to inaccurate low appraisal values and delayed closing time, which is usually due to the time lost between the appraisals to the AMC’S review dept to the banks, etc,. Appraisers are voluntarily or involuntarily leaving this job market by the dozens and it doesn’t a great prophet to predict that they will be leaving by the hundreds when the general job markets improve. What will replace the Appraiser, computers? Is this the plan? Appraiser’s only possible hope would be to(by the use of media and pressure)organize and consistently mandated non-negotiable standard feasible fee’s’ along with “responsible and reasonable turn-time” throughout the states. There is no other way. Even so, without change and the empowerment of AMC’s in this industry there will continue to be job losses, a lack of Appraisal Independence and Job Security. AMC’s way of doing business is not going to easily go away, unless it causes a MAJOR unfavorable financial impact on the economy, banks, or politician. Without proactive, responsible and regulated change, BANK AMC’s and their business practice will kill the appraisal industry and continue to complicate the future recovery of the economically dependent American real estate market. It’s just a matter of time before. This once again is about irresponsible greed, power and political endorsements, which is really what got us into this mess in the first place.

  23. George says:

    Another adventure into absurdity!
    One AMC I have a good relationship with (tho they’re ruining it by going from an unlikely 48 hour turn-time to a ridiculous 24 hours. We got into the subject of reviews (desktop) and I heard a fee of $30; better than looking out the window! So I started…at a fee of $15! Any enthusiasm I had went out the window. Then I got an e-mail saying they had a “rush project” (does an AMC ever not have a rush project?) that would require about 10 minutes per report. The fee was $8 per hour! Am I selling donuts…and what are these reports?
    But if you do 500 per month; that’s $4,000. This biz has become a total joke!

  24. The Opinionator says:

    A word to Working RE – I would MUCH prefer for these submissions to be displayed “Last first”. In other owrds put the latest submission at the beginning, so we don’t have to slide all the way down the page EVERY time. Anyone agree? . . . .

  25. The Opinionator says:

    Looks like this dialogue is running out of steam – I see longer & longer time lapses between postings. Probably the reason is that everything that needs to be said about AMC’s has been said.
    But, one major point that I don’t think has been raised is that AMC’s cost the CONSUMER hundreds of dollars over actual appraiser fees. No-one cares about us (the appraisers) – but politicians have to be on the side of the consumer and that’s where we need to concentrate our efforts.
    Not how are AMC’s bad for us, but answer the questions, “Are AMC’s bad for the public? “If so, in what way?”
    Then “How can we convey those concerns to the government?”
    “How can the implementation of HVCC be changed to protect the public”.
    It’s my opinion that you can’t do a thorough, professional job for $200.00.
    Office, auto, E&O and and other essential expenses take up about half of that, so the appraiser is earning maybe $100.00.
    Of course we all want to do a ‘professional’, quality report every time – but low fees and impossible deadlines don’t help at all.
    The consumer pays for, and deserves our best product – but AMC’s impede the process.
    Once the public knows what their money is being spend on, I’m confident a lot of the problems will go away. We have to do a MUCH better job of getting our message out.
    So, “Who you gonna call?”

  26. Mike says:

    I have to agree with the majority of the rants on this site. Unfortunately, the appraisal industry has been taken over by the AMC’s. I have never worked for an AMC because their “Mafia” style cut is ridiculous! At the moment I’m left with one full pay customer, which is a local credit union. I was working w/ 15+ clients prior to HVCC. Sadly,these folks are now all out of business. What I want to know, is what can be done aside from refusing work from AMC’s? I hate to throw away the career I’ve built up over the past 15 years, but the income just isn’t there anymore.

  27. George says:

    And the real issues are what, Salvo?
    (Guess I can’t resist looking at a train-wreck…and I get a 99% in spelling). And use “professional” instead of “profession”…btw!
    My point was/is this profession is dying. Every other entity in a real estate transaction wants appraisers to go away. The other players are doing a damn good job of getting it done.
    Mr. Cuomo and his HVCC seem headed for the statehouse in NY and who knows where after that?
    How are you gonna stop that train? You gonna have a cookout?

  28. salvo says:

    Hey George, were all here venting, not writing reports, otherwise Im sure my fellow appraiser’s would be much more diligent, profession, and careful with their spelling. By the way, you may want to consider spell check, REALISE is spelled with a Z not S.. I guess we all make spelling mistakes during the mist of venting out. Lets stick to the real issues here, your insults are useless.

  29. George says:

    I just realised that this rant was supposed to be about rating AMCs yet in however many sob tales; not many appraisers were willing to name “names”. I can only conclude that you are talking out of the side of your mouth and stuffing those $175 checks in your shirt. Unions, strikes…what a joke! Half of you can’t even spell but you want to “negotiate”. Don’t you get it? The AMCs are laughing at you/me/us. I’m outta here!

  30. George says:

    Referencing back nearly a year ago; I came across the AMC Solidifi and its claims of full fees, etc. Filling out forms is a no-brainer but as a “tag” I added…”now how about some orders”? The answer astounded me. Their clients (lenders) had rosters of approved appraisers but “maybe” an opportunity might arise for me to do an appraisal! I asked the obvious question…”why are you soliciting new appraisers?” Never got a response nor can I figure out their game. If you want names of AMCs that really suck try these…E-Appraiseit, IMortgage, LSI. All had once had a nice reputation and were quite professional. They are now as professional as that corner in your town where you don’t stop for red lights!

  31. Ed says:

    You a-holes that work for amc’s are destroying this profession. With the amc it’s a race to the bottom with their fees. When the cost of an appraisal is the same as an avm, guess what valuation will get chosen. You’ve all chosen to give this profession less than 2 years, maybe less than 1 year. You’re all idiots. The HVCC is ILLEGAL!! Don’t you know that? Why do you want to make deals with a criminal enterprise? Make the HVCC legal first if you want to make deals. I’m ashamed of you, going for the fast buck and guaranteeing you won’t have a profession in a year or 2. You are the problem with amc’s.

  32. Dan says:

    Instead of fighting the AMCs, we should be pressuring our state governments to regulate their fees thusly:

    Fee split with 20% maximum going to the AMC. That way, we use their influence with the lenders to put more money in our pockets.

  33. Lori says:

    Just watch this – it says it all and humorous.
    Hitler on HVCC and AMC’s

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lDUpXwoj5Ck

  34. First thing I want to say…..Those appraisers that called in wanting to know what HVCC stood for!!! They need to get out of the business today. That is just plain scary!

    As for HVCC (home valuation code of conduct) for those who want to know….LOL..

    I am all for paying appraisers their reasonable and customary fees (as long as they produce a credible and informative report) and forcing AMC’s to follow suit, because most of them only look for those appraisers who will take the lowest fee. I know because I never get work from many of the large companies as my fees are not low enough..forget about my expertise or quality reporting.

    I also believe strongly, those who stand to gain with the closing of a loan, ie: loan originators should NOT be allowed to order appraisals. We are going backwards if they do. They will go back to the game of pressure and giving assignments to those who produce the values they want.

    HVCC is surely not perfect by any stretch, but since then we have seen a huge reduction in calls wanting to know what a property will appraise for before they even send a report. The good ol comp checks are a thing of the past, not to mention against USPAP. Desk reviews are now my offerings for those wanting an idea on value without paying for the entire report.

    I think the movement toward using appraisers who are familiar with and who live in the same area of the homes being appraised is perfect. I think if you live and work in a certain city on a daily basis, you should be the first one they consider to do that appraisal, it only makes sense. We should not be driving 30+ miles to a property if there are others who live and work in that area all the time.

    There of course are exceptions, but gone should be the days where appraisers travel all over gods country doing reports in areas they really have no clue about.

    Thanks for letting me vent

  35. Jeffrey Key says:

    I have been told by AMC personnel and personally experienced AMCs NOT using certain panel appraisers.
    In seems they do so cause they don’t hit client’s required value!!!
    (now of course they won’t tell you this – you just mysteriously stop getting work after the client questions the value on your appraisals)
    And if the client complains about the value, the AMC requires numerous explanations from appraiser to explain value (sending you a msg).

    I NEVER SEE THIS QUESTION ON ANY AMC SURVEYS…HMM..

    Anyone else experience this?/

  36. George C. Jalil says:

    I have been a residential appraiser since 1981.

    The National Association of Realtors has an appraisal designation RAA. If more appraisers would join NAR or if the Appraisal Institute would affiliate itself with NAR we would then have a very powerful voice in Washington.

    Realtor’s interests are always very strongly represented by NAR. If appraisers had strong representation we would benefit greatly. I do not think it would solve all the problems but it would make sure our interest were defended in a powerful way.

    NAR for appraisers is like having a big brother in a school yard full of bullies. Its that simple

    If you want to know what one little appraiser can do, Join NAR’s appraisal arm now!

    Will this ever happen?

    well I can dream can’t I

  37. Mark says:

    I have been in the profession for over 20 years. I could have made at least twice the amount of income I have over the years but my constant refusal to hit numbers, inability to not adequately describe the property (ie: deferred maintenance, external issues, etc), not allowing others to choose the comparables, etc. So I hear now that the AMC’s are here to solve the issues, to make a system that allows the appraisal process to truly work. Well…… this is how my 20 years of experience, hard work, ethical behavior is be rewarded….. the amount of work that I am getting is down over 66% and the fees that are being offered to me is down about 25-40%. All the client relationships that I built over the last 20 years is gone. The lenders that wanted a good ethical, hardworking appraiser and would pay a fair fee for that experience and ethical behavior can no longer choose me over the guy that has little to no experience or was a local appraiser that any lender that cared about not getting crap appraisals would stay away from. It’s funny, these AMC’s will grade your report, post your turn time and than treat you like you are some form filler and tell you how to do your job. It just blows my mind sometimes when I talk with a reviewer and learn how they think an appraisal is completed, their complete lack of an understanding of the appraisal process. You can do a complex appraisal, really utilize your experience, knowledge and intelligence to provide them with a high quality appraisal and if there is an angle in the picture they don’t like, a comment that some reviewer at the amc (out of the blue) wants in the report you will get a grade of like a 7 out of 10. So some hack appraiser can slap together some report, could use inappropriate sales, really be off the mark as far as value and not truly describe the property and if the reviewer likes the angles of the picture and doesnt deem they want some additional abitrary comment in, than wow, he gets a perfect score of 10 out of 10. I could go on and on of how this system is so flawed and how it truly is killing the industry and I am sure we will get back to some common sense one day but I bet you there will be far less good appraisers around. God help us all.

  38. Jim says:

    Yes their are good amc’s out there, Quantrix comes to mind. Their are also bad ones, Lincoln Appraisal for one. Constant pressure to hit the value their clients, such as Crecent Mortgage, needs.

  39. bryan says:

    its ashame that as appraisers we are willing or more correctly if we want to continue doing appraisals we have to put up with amc’s. amc’s are nothing more than what use to be internal appraisal departments at the banks. now the banks that own these amcs are profitting off of our industry and they aren’t even licensed appraisers. nice business model. they are collecting appraisal fees and they supposedly want an independent appraisal!?! what a joke our industry has become. until the banks get their hands out of our pockets im ashamed to say were are nothing but form fillers.

    this is corruption plain and simple and our elected officials allow this to continue and voted on allowing this sytem to take hold.

    the american consumer will not stand for this and change will happen.

  40. Ken Maurer says:

    I hate to say it but we knew this was coming especially with all the mortgage fraud during the real estate boom. AMC’s have been around as long as I have been appraising, 21 years. Appraisers are a funny bunch, if we had a strong lobby group (sorry appraisal institute you dropped the ball) maybe we could have been involved in this transition. Were we tired of lender pressure, yes for the past 20 years!! But all we do is complain. If every appraiser refused to work for AMC’s paying the low fees, than we would control the fees and our destiny.

  41. John says:

    I just got off the phone with a major AMC. I called them to complain that it doesn’t matter how fast I text them back for an assignment, it has already been accepted by another appraiser. I got five text messages in the last two days and didn’t get one assignment. I complained that every time they text message it costs me $.15 and that I wouldn’t mind paying the $.15 if I got an occassional appraisal. The woman said that the way they assign appraisals is, when an appraisal comes in the put the address in their computer and all the appraisers within a certain radius gets a text message. First one to text back gets the assignment. I told the woman on the phone that I didn’t think it could be any worse than that. I was told that what I should do is get a PO Box in a busy area and they could feed me work that way. They are already doing that with a few appraisers. She told me that she thinks that I am nasty and that is why I not getting any work. She said they want to have a mutual friendly working situation and that by being nasty it was making it hard for them to assign me work. I said you want to talk nasty, I did two appraisals for your company and I am waiting over 60 days to get paid a lousy $210 an appraisal. She hung up on me. Anyone who thinks that this AMC is a good thing, is out of their minds. After twenty-five years in the business I think it’s time for me to find a new profession.

  42. Vicki says:

    More feedback from our marketing efforts:

    Maybe you have read this advertisement from Special Asset Management (SAM): Bank Appraisers Needed – Valuation Opportunities for Bank REO Properties
    Amid the current housing market crisis, the nation’s banks and financial institutions need qualified real estate valuation experts for third-party services on their foreclosed and troubled real estate properties, both residential and commercial. This is one intermediary source that matches work with appraisers and other vendors. There is a one-time registration fee. Orders are awarded on a bidding system, so there is no guarantee of work. Appraisers/vendors keep 100 percent of their negotiated fees. OREP members qualify for a significant group discount at sign up. Please visit https://specialassetmanagement.com/UserDetails.aspx?UserType=M and be sure to enter code OREP27 when paying, to receive a $115.00 discount from $250.00 to $135.00.

    We paid the fee many months ago (8 months or so) and have not received any opportunities. I recently emailed and received this reply (in part): Let me share with you some overall numbers on opportunities provided to our panel. Since June of this year, we have forwarded in excess of fifty (50) opportunities to the panel, in 30 different states. The quantity is varied–August was an unusually strong month with 23 opportunities forwarded, while October and November only provided a handful of opportunities. By all accounts, home sale activities for distressed properties are expected to greatly increase early in 2010.

    50 opportunites since June and today is December 1st? Not great numbers.

    I like to believe this organization is legitimately trying to provide a service for the money received. I hope they are successful.

    Be leary in spending $250 or $135. You may not receive any opportunities as we have not.

    I hope this feedback helps!

  43. Vicki says:

    I’ve been asked to provide this feedback from our Chief Appraiser. iMortgage’s retrospective review department lacks seasoning and review staff tend to view reports with an eye for new financing instead of as a retrospective valuation. This group needs education. Our chief appraiser was not allowed to speak to the review appraiser after having 8 requests to revisit a retrospective valuation to determine if a retrospective review was required. None of the additional requests for information had any merit or the information was fully explained in the original report. iMortgage is also among the lowest paying. At this time it is questionable if we will continue the appraiser-client relationship.

    If hope this feedback helps!

  44. Carter says:

    Less than $300 for a single family report is a failed business model in my mind. So far I have managed to stick by this. If if can’t I will start the process of finding another profession and or job. Accepting $200 fees for a full report is pitiful. I was getting more in the early 1990′s. There are other options out there and working as a tenant farmer for AMC’s is not one.

  45. Vicki says:

    Allen, thanks for your comments. I think your comments are what this blog is about. We need to get away from the “if you don’t like it – don’t work for them attitude” and figure out which ones we can work with (fees, turntime, hassle factor).

  46. Allen says:

    AppraiserLoft.com- does not pay on time…3-9 months after completion of assignment. 6 months average.
    ProTeck- ranks the appraiser based on turn time and quality…enphasis on turn time and not quality. My ranking 3 out of 5 starts….99% quality rating 70% turn time.
    Southwest Financial- very low fees and high demand on fast turn time.
    LSI- pays on time and fees are reasonable.

    My state is requiring all AMC’s to register prior to doing business in the state of Arkansas, but they do not have the man power or revenue to “regulate” the activity.

    As a whole, I think we asked for this type of business model, it just isn’t what we expected. I think that management companies should be regional, not national. An appraisal management in California has not business working with appraisers in New York or Tennessee. If the appraiser needs to be competent in his market, then so should the management company. How can a AMC company employee “review” and appraisal for a market they know nothing about? Insurance companies have to be licensed in the state they operate, we should apply the same principle of “knowledge” to AMCs. I really can’t wait for the AMC’s “USPAP” to come out. Should make for some interesting reading.

  47. LarryXA says:

    Thx, this has definitely made my day!

    _______________________
    wtf

  48. Cracker says:

    I don’t get all this unrest. If you think the fee is too small don’t accept the job. If you don’t like having to commit to a 48 hour turn around then don’t accept the job. You are still free to cultivate clients with the lawyers, banks, ect. You are still free to make the appointments at your conveniece, you are still free to work out of a large appraiser shop or your garage. And you are still free to go sell cars if you don’t like the deal. So, Whats up??

  49. Vicki says:

    I just read most of this blog and wanted to comment on an AMC I recently came across.
    I am the marketing person for a ten appraiser firm (I am also a certified appraiser). It is my job to find and negotiate business when we are slow and to complete appraisal assignments when we are busy.

    I recently looked into and signed up for ProVal USA. It appeared that some appraisers were receiving assignments in our area through this AMC. I left two messages for someone to call me back so I could better understand this AMC (no one answers their phones!) and received no calls back. Shortly thereafter we started to receive emails to pay them $50 to sign up with them and we would have to also pay them around $75 for each order we receive. They would debit our credit card. It looks like we would have to collect from their clients as well. What if their clients didn’t pay? We declined to do business with them. Pretty scary! I don’t even know what they do to earn their money.

    Please feel free to correct me if my information is wrong. I wasn’t able to veryify anything with this company because they wouldn’t call me back.

    We do work with many AMCs but our priorty clients are banks, credit unions and government agencies.

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