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TOPICS, COMMENTS OR CONCERNS OF THE APPRAISAL INDUSTRY

November 28th, 2017 9:25 AM

A single voice can easily be ignored while many voices with a single message cannot.  Representatives of organizations, coalitions, etc. tend to have greater opportunity to present their message to those in positions of power.  A coalition gives its appraisers with similar problems, issues or concerns a better chance to have their voice heard and heeded.

The Virginia Coalition of Appraiser Professionals is an active group with presence and participation in:

 Virginia Real Estate Appraiser Board Meetings
Network of State Appraiser Organizations (NSAO)
Association of Appraiser Regulatory Officials (AARO)
The Appraisal Foundation Advisory (TAF) Committee Meetings

We are active with State legislation impacting appraisers.
Some legislative issues we introduced/supported and lobbied at the State Capital include:

AMC Regulations
Customary and Reasonable Fees
AMC Surety Bonds 
30 Day payment from initial delivery

We introduced legislation prohibiting the use of staff appraisers by AMCs to complete Appraisal Reports and more recently spoke to the Virginia Housing Commission concerning the SB1575, which would eliminate fees paid to the appraiser by AMCs from the C&R calculations. 

VaCAP needs your support to continue to speak for all appraisers in Virginia


 Donations - Membership - Volunteering
 
 
Please Support VaCAP! 


To volunteer your time, click here

To make a monetary donation, click here. 

To join VaCAP, click here

 
to mail a donation to VaCAP: 

VaCAP 
 P.O. Box 42314, 
Richmond, VA 23242 

Thank you for supporting VaCAP!




Copyright © 2016 Virginia Coalition of Appraiser Professionals
P.O. Box 42314
Richmond, VA 23242
804741-4968
All Rights Reserved.

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Posted by Virginia Coalition of Appraiser Professionals on November 28th, 2017 9:25 AMLeave a Comment

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July 6th, 2016 10:25 AM
Fellow appraisers, 

It has come to our attention that someone by the name of Will Byers is stating he is an employee of the Virginia Coalition of Appraiser Professionals on Facebook. 

VaCAP is a 100% volunteer organization and has no employees. The individual posting this false information, Will Byers is not a member of VaCAP and does not have permission to use the VaCAP name or post anything on behalf of VaCAP. 

Sadly, a member of our Board of Directors tried to reach out to him through Facebook to ask him to remove the false information. He was blocked immediately. VaCAP  has reached out to Facebook to have this false information removed. 

Our volunteer members work very hard on behalf of all appraisers in the Commonwealth of Virginia and it is truly disheartening when a licensed professional appraiser conducts themselves with such dishonor. 

Thank you to all dedicated professional appraisers that support the efforts of VaCAP.

Posted by Virginia Coalition of Appraiser Professionals on July 6th, 2016 10:25 AMLeave a Comment

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February 21st, 2016 7:01 PM
Public Trust or Business Practice? 

VaCAP wants your opinion!  

Is the practice of email blasting appraisal assignments an issue of Public Trust or is it a Business Practice? Please share your thoughts. 

Posted in:General and tagged: AMC's
Posted by Virginia Coalition of Appraiser Professionals on February 21st, 2016 7:01 PMView Comments (2)

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February 5th, 2016 7:38 PM
The Virginia Coalition of Appraiser Professionals is a 100% volunteer organization. We exist to unite, preserve and promote the appraisal profession in Virginia. Public Trust and Appraiser Independence are of the utmost importance to us.  

Recently VaCAP has been receiving correspondence from Virginia Appraisers complaining about low fees and AMC abuses.  Comments like the “The AMC is taking more than half of my fee”   and another “Why hasn’t VaCAP done something? “ One of the best yet ….. ”When is the Customary and Reasonable Fee Committee meeting?  I can’t keep accepting appraisals for $225 “ This came two weeks after the Customary and Reasonable Fee Committee meeting! 

Well Mr. $225 Appraiser, what rock have you been under? VaCAP sends out information on a regular basis; on average of once a week. We have announced the dates, times, locations of all the meetings.  We have explained what the Townhall is; why you should register, and even provided a link to the site for you to register!  We even post on Facebook. Mr. $225 Appraiser, the AMC taking half your fee is nothing new. This is one of the main reasons VaCAP was started back in the 2011.  

Mr. $225 Appraiser, Why are you not a member of VaCAP? Why are you not a member of any other appraisal organization?  Why should all the volunteer members of VaCAP continue to work for your benefit?   Why are you unwilling to help yourself?  Why do you continue to accept fees below customary and reasonable?  As long as you, Mr. $225 Appraiser continue to accept assignments below customary and reasonable fees, they will continue to be paid.Mr. $225 Appraiser, you are a major contributor to the problem, and not part of any solution.  Why Mr. $225 Appraiser, are you unwilling to help yourself?  

VaCAP is willing to help any industry professional with any situation. We even help members of other coalitions in other states. Is it really too much to ask that you be willing to help yourself first?   

From the Appraisal Subcomittee Website:  

Appraisal independence requirements for consumer credit transactions secured by the consumer's principal dwelling are set forth in 129E of the Truth in Lending Act (TILA). Other appraisal independence (or appraisal independence) requirements are established by various Federal and State statutes, regulations or guidance. Examples of violations of appraisal independence laws could include:  

  • an appraisal management company failing to pay an appraiser a customary and reasonable fee for appraisal services. 
  • withholding payment of appraisal services to influence the outcome of an assignment
  • an appraiser failing to act independently and impartially in the development and reporting of an assignment's results.
  • a financial institution's loan production staff attempting to improperly influence an appraiser's opinion of value. 
  • an appraiser failing to disclose a financial or other interest in the property that is the subject of an assignment. 
  • excluding an appraiser from consideration for future assignments because the appraiser reported a value that did not meet or exceed a predetermined value. 
  • implying to an appraiser that future retention depends on the amount at which the appraiser estimates a value to be.
Mr. $225 Appraiser, the time  has come for you to step up and be a professional appraiser, support your industry, our future, and protect  the public.  Here is  who to contact with your complaint: 

Richard Cordray
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
P.O. Box 4503 
Iowa City, Iowa 52244
Appraisal_Tips@CFPB.gov

Thomas J Curry
Comptroller of the Currency
400 7th St, SW
Washington, D.C. 20210

Janet Yellen
Federal Reserve Board
20th Street and Constition Avenue, NW
Washington, D.C. 20429

Martin Gruenberg
Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
550 17th Street, NW
Washington, D.C. 20429


When filing your complaint, make sure to provide documentation as well as the lender involved. The lender is the one responsible for their agent, the AMC.  

Posted in:General and tagged: AMC's
Posted by Virginia Coalition of Appraiser Professionals on February 5th, 2016 7:38 PMLeave a Comment

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January 7th, 2016 5:12 PM

 

January 7, 2015

 

For immediate Release:

 

Since the beginning, Federal Regulation of the industry was initiated to “protect the public. “ FIRREA, USPAP, HVCC, Dodd Frank and state licensing of appraisers and appraisal management companies were initiated with consumer protection as the goal. Customary and reasonable fees, mandated by Dodd Frank, are also to protect the consumer.

 

The Virginia Coalition of Appraiser Professionals supports customary and reasonable fees and believes in order to determine a customary and reasonable fee all things associated must be considered and incorporated into the determination. The below practices by AMC’s are not in the interest of protecting public trust and go against the purpose of the Dodd Frank Act and the Commonwealth of Virginia AMC Regulations to protect the public.

 

1.   Email Blast of orders with a “first to respond gets the order” approach.  Often these email blasts are sent after normal business hours and on weekends with unrealistic fees and turn times. 

 

Many AMC’s have developed their own mobile apps and/ or utilize text messaging for the sole purpose of facilitating a” first to respond gets the order.” Limited information is relayed to the appraiser and only a partial address and a fee is displayed. Relevant information, such as the due date and scope or work are omitted.

 

Both the email blasts and the text messaging systems do not allow an appraiser ample time to research the property to determine if they are qualified to perform the assignment. The assignments advertised through these systems are usually below customary and reasonable fees and often are sent outside of normal business hours. Often there is no opportunity to counter the offer, a fee or turn time. These systems are not in compliance with the Dodd Frank Legislation and are harmful, not only to the public, but to communities, neighborhoods and the appraisal profession.

 

The consumer is protected when the most competent and qualified appraiser completes the appraisal. Language should be included in the C& R Fee determination on how to choose the most competent and qualified appraiser. The practice of email blast / text messaging should be strictly prohibited.  This business model seeks the lowest fee, the quickest turn time and does nothing to ensure the public is protected.

 

Documentation of the vetting of the appraiser should be kept with each assignment by the AMC and provided to the VREAB upon request and/ or audit.

 

2.   Appraisers should be given the opportunity to negotiate a C& R Fee without consequences.  Many AMC’s penalize the appraiser if they ask for a higher fee or reassign the appraisal assignment.

 

      Language should be included with the C& R Fee determination that strictly prohibits this practice and documentation of a higher fee request and documentation as to why it was accepted / not accepted by the AMC should be kept for each assignment. This information should be provided to the VREAB upon request or audit. Without proper vetting of the appraiser, the AMC is supporting a low fee / quick turn time model, which is not in compliance with the Dodd Frank Legislation or Virginia statue.  Paying an appraiser less than what is needed to provide a quality report does not protect the public in any way.

 

3.   Complete engagement letters should be presented to the appraiser before an order can be accepted.  How does the appraiser know if the fee is C&R if they don’t know what the engagement letter requires? Generic engagement letters that incorporate numerous lender guidelines should be eliminated. The appraiser should be provided this information without the need to access 3rd party sites, or click links within an email.  

 

      Additionally, some AMC’s state on the engagement letter, you cannot accept the assignment if you are on an exclusionary list. Isn’t this the role of the AMC to manage the appraisal process?  How does this practice protect the public?

 

4.   Ample time for an appraiser to research a property must be given prior to acceptance of an assignment. Some AMC’s allow as little as 2 hours to respond when directly assigned to an appraiser.  This is not realistic as often times, the appraiser is not in areas where they can access MLS and other data sources to research the property prior to acceptance.

 

Language should be included with the C& R Fees determination that strictly prohibits this practice. Accepting an assignment without the proper research is not in the interest of the protecting the public.

 

 

      5.  Upload and / or Technology Fees should not be an appraiser 

           expense. These  charges range from anywhere from $5 to $35 and are

           not necessary. Additionally, fees associated with the same 3rd party are

           not consistent. For example, the technology / pload fee for ABC Portal

           varies depending on the AMC the report is being sent to. How

           can this be a legitament fee? How is this fee in the best interest of the

           public?

 

Each appraiser has the ability to deliver an appraisal report in a safe, secure and compliant manor without the use of 3rd.party. The upload of an appraisal report is time consuming, and requires the record keeping and maintenance of user names and passwords. The use of 3rd party sites provides no benefit to the consumer or the appraiser. It only increases the cost to the public.

 

Any AMC or lender who requires an appraisal to be delivered through a 3rd party should do so at the expense of the AMC or lender, not the appraiser or borrower. This fee should be prohibited from being passed on to the borrower and appraiser as it does not provide any benefit to anyone other than the AMC or lender. Where are the protections and benefits to the public?

 

 

6.  Staff appraisers employed directly by an AMC are completing appraisals locally in direct competition with local fee appraisers. The role of an AMC is different than the role of an appraisal company / fee appraiser.  The role of a fee appraiser is to provide an unbiased opinion of value to protect the public. The role of an AMC is to manage the appraisal process, not to perform the appraisal. Allowing an employee of the AMC to perform an appraisal is not in the interest of protecting the public. An AMC is hired by the lender and is not an unbiased participant, thus resulting in a conflict of interest.

 

In addition to the above AMC practices, VaCAP recommends the VREAB implement the following to protect the public interest:

 

1.   A re-evaluation of C& R fees should be done at a minimum of every two years. Appraisal fees were stagnant for many years. Periodic reviews to ensure appraisal fees remain customary and reasonable is necessary to protect the public.

 

      2.  The definition of an AMC should be expanded to specifically

            include portals used by lenders directly. Many of these portals 

            perform the same function as an AMC, only in electronic form. The

            intent of the Dodd Frank Legislation must be consistent to protect

 the public.

 

Per Dodd Frank, an AMC is defined as:

 

‘‘(11) APPRAISAL MANAGEMENT COMPANY.—The term 

 ‘appraisal management company’  means, in connection with valuing

  properties collateralizing mortgage loans or mortgages incorporated into a

  securitization, any external third party authorized either by a creditor of a

  consumer credit transaction secured by a consumer’s principal dwelling or

  by an underwriter or other principal in the secondary mortgage markets,

  that oversees a network or panel of more than 15 certified or licensed

  appraisers in a State or 25 or more nationally within a given Year.”

 

Virginia Statue should be consistent with the Federal Statue which includes 3rd

party portals.

 

3.   The VREAB should have a system in place to process complaints

       of non- customary and reasonable fees of unlicensed entities. 

       Those entities conducting business in Virginia in accordance with

       Virginia Statue that are not licensed directly through DPOR must

       comply with all state statures. The VREAB should have a system in

       place to process complaints against those entities that are not required

       to be licensed by DPOR. The intent of all legislation is to protect the

       public interest and everyone must obey Virginia Statue to protect public

       trust.

 

VaCAP encourages all industry professionals that support the above initiatives to attend the special meeting of the Virginia Real Estate Appraisal Board on January 12, 2016, at 10:00 AM, 9960 Mayland Dr. Richmond, VA 23233.  If you are unable to attend, VaCAP encourages the submission of commentary and documentation to the Virginia Real Estate Appraisal Board at the above address.

 

This press release is a summary of a letter sent to the VREAB on 01/07/2016 in request for commentary on customary and reasonable fees.  


Posted in:General
Posted by Virginia Coalition of Appraiser Professionals on January 7th, 2016 5:12 PMLeave a Comment

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December 22nd, 2015 5:27 AM

Now is the time to speak up and let your voice be heard. The Virginia Real Estate Appraiser Board is holding a Special Meeting specifically for Customary and Reasonable Fees on January 12, 2016 @ 10:00 AM at the DPOR offices located at 9960 Mayland Ave, Richmond, VA 23233. 

Customary and Reasonable Fees are required under Federal and State Law. VaCAP encourages every appraiser to attend, participate and provide documentation on how to determine customary and reasonable fees in  Virginia. 

You can and will make a difference! Be part of the solution!






Posted in:General
Posted by Virginia Coalition of Appraiser Professionals on December 22nd, 2015 5:27 AMView Comments (1)

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December 1st, 2015 4:41 PM
Help Wanted - Day Laborers Needed .... Inquire at any AMC

The Dodd Frank act requires the lender to be responsible for their agents. This means the lender is responsible for the actions of the AMC. Do the lenders know what their AMC'S are doing? Probably not.

The Dodd Frank act also requires the most qualified appraiser be selected for each and every assignment. What vetting is done by the AMC'S to ensure the most qualified Appraiser is selected? Many AMC'S have the false mentality every appraiser is qualified and competent to appraise every piece of real estate. This simply is not a sound theory. Just because an appraiser is licensed to appraise a certain type of property, that does not make them qualified, nor competent for each piece of real estate. If an appraiser accepts an assignment in which they are not qualified to complete the appraiser has certain duties  to the client under USPAP; all with the intent to protect public trust. The purpose of the Dodd Frank Act was also to protect the public trust.

Many AMC's just don't get it. They force appraisers to respond to emails, and now text alerts with the mentality of the first to respond gets the order, often at well below customary and reasonable fees.  How often are such an requests made after normal business hours?

This business model reduces appraisers to the equivalency of day laborers standing on the corner waiting for a truck to come by and pick one person for a day's work. This practice is viewed by many State and Federal agencies as non- compliance with Dodd-Frank and harms the consumer. How many other Licensees from the Virginia Department of Professional Occupational Regulation are subjected to this environment?

State coalitions are working relentlessly to overcome and change how AMC 's conduct business and treat professional appraisers. Here in Virginia, VaCAP continues to preserve and promote the appraisal profession, and citizens of Virginia through education and legislative change. 

Help VaCAP promote and preserve our profession.  JOIN VaCAP TODAY  and make a difference. 

Posted in:General
Posted by Virginia Coalition of Appraiser Professionals on December 1st, 2015 4:41 PMLeave a Comment

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December 1st, 2015 4:39 PM
CUSTOMARY AND REASONABLE FEES
When Dodd Frank was passed a few years ago there was much discussion as to what it actually meant to
lenders¸ appraisers, and AMCs.
AMCs were quick and forceful in their definition. It was the fee they could coerce an appraiser into
accepting. That was their definition. This has been a big impact on the well-being of an honorable
profession.
In June the Federal Final Rules were released, and they took effect in September of this year. These Final
Rules clarified many questions regarding lending, appraising, and AMC involvement. First, the Feds
have made it very clear that lenders ARE NOT required to utilize the services of any AMC. Indeed, if they
do opt to do so the lender is responsible for the accuracy and reliability of ALL appraisals done by their
AMCs. It is clear that lenders have liability for good, honest, and competent appraisals regardless of any
involvement of an AMC. AMCs do NOT protect lenders or borrowers.
Second, the Final Rule clearly mandates that customary and reasonable fee definition is left to each
state to determine.
On November 17th at DPOR Headquarters on Mayland Road in Richmond is the quarterly Real Estate
Appraiser Board meeting. It begins at 10 am.
It is expected that at this meeting the Board will consider customary and reasonable fees. This is
important to us all. It appears that DPOR has come to the realization that C & R fees is an important
issue that must be settled.
VaCAP has been at the center of this issue, not only in Virginia, but also on a national basis through the
Network of state appraiser coalitions that represent about 25 states now.
VaCAP will speak out regarding C & R. The premise is that the current VA fee in Virginia is fair as
the minimum C & R fee to be paid to an appraiser. The utilization and adoption of the VA fee
meets all Dodd Frank requirements and definitions, much better that the self-serving, selfish fee
maintained and promoted by AMCs.
WHAT CAN YOU DO?
You can and should attend this most important meeting on November 17 to speak or support.
You can and should join VaCAP NOW especially if you believe VaCAP represents your interests.
Join us on November 17th in Richmond.
Join VaCap TODAY!!!!!
OR you can donate $$$ TODAY!!!!! OR you can volunteer your time. Both are essential to the success of
the appraisal profession.

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Posted by Virginia Coalition of Appraiser Professionals on December 1st, 2015 4:39 PMView Comments (1)

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October 27th, 2015 10:54 AM
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Posted in:General
Posted by Virginia Coalition of Appraiser Professionals on October 27th, 2015 10:54 AMView Comments (2)

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