11th October 2011

Appraiser Loft closes its doors – FINALLY!

posted in Appraisal Management Companies, Dodd-Frank C&R Topics |

On Friday employees were notified the company was out of business and insolvent.

They were told they would be paid later. [CEO] Aman [Makkar] told them at lunch they will get paid next week, and they won’t

Appraiser Loft has been known by appraisers for a long time now as not being expediant when paying their invoices. I have had numerous appraisers call and ask me how they should go about collecting appraisal fees from Appraiser Loft.

I have done some Appraiser Loft work in the past, but luckily was paid within 30 days. But I have attempted to contact them on behalf of other appraisers that were not getting paid. No emails or calls were ever answered and I suggested following up with the BBB.

It is great to see low paying AMCs go out of business, but it hurts when they owe appraisers thousands of dollars in appraisal fees and just close their doors and shut off their phone lines.

We can only hope more AMCs that do not pay customary and reasonable fees will follow in their footsteps.

I have noticed quite a few AMCs raising their fees in response to customary and reasonable as well as UAD compliance. That is a nice trend I hope to see continue.

If you are interested in finding the companies that make my top 40 list, make sure to check out my Appraisal Management Company Directory.

Bryan Knowlton

UPDATE 10/13/2011:
I have received quite a few responses from appraisers regarding AppraiserLoft and how to collect debt they might have with you.

One appraiser suggested going after the homeowner who will pressure their mortgage company or the actual lender to make the payment. This sounds like a good idea but I received a new response from an appraiser with an even better idea.

AppraiserLoft must get bonded in each state that they do work in, you can put a lein against their bond in that state for payment.

I would suggest first contacting appraiserloft and if that does not work, you may be able to contact your state licensing agency and find out who they are bonded with. It seems the bond information can be found at the states Division of Finance & Corporate Securities division.

Another great tip:
In the State of Louisiana, the Office of Finance states that no appraisal fee should be outstanding beyond 60 days or the broker can lose their license.

Some of the other states may have similar laws that appraisers may not be aware or knew existed. When I send a demand letter to the lender with a copy of the form provided by Office of Finance, I get my money immediately.

If anyone has any further ideas, please post them using the comments section below.

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