It was a Big Day for Appraisers

By | July 31, 2019

The Virginia Real Estate Appraiser Board met for its quarterly meeting yesterday. We are happy to report CoesterVMS no longer has a license to operate in Virginia. The Board voted to accept the consent order accepting the voluntary surrender of his license.

The Board also passed a motion to draft legislation to be introduced into the General Assembly giving the Board regulatory control over the hybrid inspection and those individuals that perform the inspection.  In other words, the Board wants those individuals to be licensed to protect the public trust. The exact language of the legislationis to be determined and the Board will work with DPOR staff on the issue.. As legislative change takes time and there is no guarantee of the outcome of any bill introduced, appraisers were encouraged to reach out to their own representatives to encourage a legislative change, VaCAP will be discussing legislative issues within the coming weeks. We will be asking for your help in meeting with your representatives.

There was interesting discussions around what the Board could do in the meantime. It seems holding the appraisal management companies responsible for the inspection is the best option. The thinking was they choose, engage and pay the inspector. They also are responsible for reviewing the report for USPAP compliance.

Perhaps the most exciting news that developed yesterday, is the news that the FTC case against the Louisiana Real Estate Appraiser Board was issued a stay. Judge Brian A Jackson, The United States District Court,  Middle District of Louisiana signed an order issuing a a Stay until further notice in the case.  See the order below.


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One thought on “It was a Big Day for Appraisers

  1. Mike Ford, American Guild of Appraisers

    Great news on all fronts. Well done VaCAP and to all appraisers involved in helping to guide the Board’s understanding of the issues in Old Dominion.

    While the Stay in the FTC/LA case is great news, let’s not assume its the end of the process. In efforts to resolve the suit early on, LA abandoned some of its positive C&R fee requirement metrics. Let’s not lose sight of the fact that C&R fees are just as important today as they were when the spurious FTC case was initiated by the AMC special interests & lobby.

    All other states put their own C&R considerations hold pending this case. I see no evidence any want to take the issue up again…as they certainly should be doing. Now more than ever with hybrids having proven themselves to be fraught with abuse and risk due to RIDICULOUS low fees so low as to virtually assure deficient products, C&R fees commensurate with the work required to produce sound appraisals and honest reporting, are critical.

    On the regulatory front, there has been an extremely radical rewording of California regulations by non elected officials granted ‘rulemaking’ authority. The Chief of BREA has effectively declared through administrative modifications of language that CA BREA no longer does appraisals or appraisal reviews-only investigations. Hence they are NOT bound by USPAP in determining if WE are in violation of it! The sophist reasoning goes off the rails almost immediately but it is a position they have officially taken and testified to before Administrative Law COurt via pleading and motions.

    What is the impact? Simply put there is absolutely no reason for SR 3 or SR 4 to exist any longer. None. The artifice of calling what used to be a review “investigations” exempts them from the states own laws obligating ALL licensed appraiser to comply with USPAP. This is serious. It could not happen without the active collusion with TAF and AARO behind the scenes, and quite possibly the conceptual concurrence of ASC who monitor the states FIRREA compliance.

    Review standards were originally developed to assure lending clients of adequate confirmation of acceptable appraisal report quality through the review procedure. FOr appraisers whose work was being reviewed, it set a uniform metric for judging the work of our peers.
    1. Lenders no longer care if they have credible appraisal reviews. The AVMs and CU they use instead gives them all the plausible deniability they require-without killing deals needlessly by looking at them too closely;
    2. Neither the lenders, ASC, TAF, AARO or (many) State Regulatory agencies care if appraisers whose work is being “investigated” have fair or uniform treatment. Frankly, USPAP has been a hindrance to selective enforcement and levying fines.

    End result? According to the California Bureau of Real Estate Appraisers Changing the title or process of appraisal review to appraisal, investigation renders such analysis 100% exempt from SR 3 and SR4. Additionally, appraisals no longer need be reviewed in the context of the intended use; client expectations or based on what the actions of peers would do under similar circumstance.

    This is not a joke folks. Call BREA up and ask if Senior Property Appraisers/Investigators do ANY appraisal or appraisal reviews. The answer will be “no.” They “investigate”, and because investigations are not reviews, they are not bound by SR3 & SR4.


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