Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Appraiser Active in Washington, D.C.

While browsing at Tampa International Airport, waiting to board my flight to Washington, D.C., I picked up a copy of the Tampa Bay Times. On the tarmac, waiting to take off, I noticed a familiar face looking at me from page 4B; the Business Section. 

The headline:


I'm pleased the writer, Elizabeth Behrman, decided to include these points:

"The bulk of my testimony has to do with ensuring appraiser independence, and the value and importance of appraiser independence," Gregoire said.
"Buyers don't expect the appraiser to just rubber stamp the sale price," he said. "They want a good, honest, objective appraisal by somebody that has the necessary qualifications to do a credible job."
As long as the appraiser can demonstrate that his data is supported and correct, the lender should just lay off," Gregoire said.
For those interested, the testimony I am offering on behalf of the National Association of REALTORS is at this LINK, along with that of the other panel members.

UPDATE: There is a link to the video of the entire hearing at the link above.

This is what the hearing room looked like, just prior to 10:00 A.M. That's subcommittee chair Biggert preparing to gavel the meeting to order.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Appraisal Industry Hearing - June 28, 2012 - UPDATE #1 6-22-2012 UPDATE #2 6-26-2012

In a release, Chairman Spencer Bachus of the U.S. House of Representatives Financial Services Committee, announced the committee and subcommittee schedule for the month of June, 2012.

There is one interesting among them:

Thursday, June 28:
The Insurance and Housing Community Opportunity Subcommittee will hold a hearing on the appraisal industry and regulations impacting the single-family mortgage market. The hearing will begin at 10 a.m. in room 2128 Rayburn.

As soon as more information is available, we will do our best to update this post.

UPDATE #1 - 6-22-2012: The hearing has been added to the calendar of The Committee on Financial Services and is posted online. The new title of the hearing is "Appraisal Oversight: The Regulatory Impact on Consumers and Businesses". We are waiting to see the makeup of the witness panel.

UPDATE #2 - 6-26-2012: The members of the hearing panels have been posted online. Two panels will be providing testimony. Yours truly is on Panel II, providing comments on behalf of the National Association of REALTORS®. The written testimony will be delivered to the committee today, and should be posted online.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

AppraiserLoft Update

It might not be the largest scam pulled on appraisers, or even the latest, but it happens to be the one in the news today. According to Lily Leung at the San Diego Union Tribune:

AppraiserLoft, the company in question, has been at the center of several non-payment and late-payment claims from appraisers, former employees and other parties, before and after it shuttered suddenly in October, according to public records. 
In this bundle of cases, administrative law judge Diane Mihalsky found that the company failed to pay Arizona appraisers for completed work within the required 45 days set by Arizona state law -- 181 times. It appears AppraiserLoft either resolved or made attempts to resolve 10 of those cases, but appraisers in the remaining 171 cases say they haven't seen payments yet, court documents show. 
Mihalsky, in a June 6 order, recommended that the Arizona Board of Appraisal fine AppraiserLoft $5,000 for each of the 171 violations, totaling $855,000, and revoke the company's license as an appraisal management company.
AppraiserLoft joins Global Appraisal Solutions, Appraisal Mediation Solutions, (Larry Holzer affiliated companies), and Security One Valuation Services (a Todd Barfield enterprise), as the poster children of fly by night Appraisal Management Companies. The unpaid fees are in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Please be careful in extending credit to unknowns.