24th July 2014

Zaio Announces Acquisition of Axis Appraisal Management Solutions

CALGARY, July 23, 2014 /CNW/ – Zaio Corporation (TSX-V:ZAO), (“Zaio” or “the Company”), is pleased to announce that, as the result of a successful due diligence process, it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire 100% of Axis Appraisal Management Solutions Inc. (“Axis”) with Axis and shareholders holding 97% of the issued share capital of Axis. Zaio and Axis expect that the remaining shareholders will sign the definitive agreement by the end of the week, however, in any event the shares of any minority dissenting shareholders will be acquired pursuant to the dissent procedures under applicable legislation. …continue reading the rest of this post: Zaio Announces Acquisition of Axis Appraisal Management Solutions

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24th July 2014

2014 AMC Directory – Updated 07/01/2014

I thought I would make a little video to promote the new 2014 AMC Directory.  I have noticed work picking up and I am getting more work from the appraisal management companies over the past few months.

Still working on updating the appraisal management companies with all my current e&o information and such, I guess I got dropped from a lot of the panels because I did not keep my information updated.

It is always a good idea to go through your list of past Appraisal management companies that you don’t mind getting orders from and keep your information updated.  A lot of their systems don’t automatically send out reminders when information needs to be updated and you just won’t get any more offers.

Good luck out there! Happy appraising!

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11th April 2014

2014 Appraisal Management Company Directory Now Available!

I just wanted to let everyone know the new 2014 AMC Directory is now available! You can find it inside of the store.

On this last update, I went through the entire list of appraisal management companies and removed any of the companies that have had problems paying appraisers, those that have gone out of business as well as adding a bunch of new companies to the list. They are all clickable links on the electronic version and a printed version is also available for those that want to write their usernames and passwords directly in to the book.

With the incredible slowdown that has been experienced recently, it is a great time to update all of your information with the AMCs and sign up to a bunch of new companies. The list has over 275 companies with the top 47 on the list are the companies that sent me the most work in the past year. There is still a lot of work out there.

2014 AMC DirectoryWhy are you not getting the appraisal orders?

There are a lot of reasons why you might not be getting a ton of work from the appraisal management companies. Topping the list of reasons is due to document updating when you get a new license or e&o insurance. You can also reach out to all the appraisal management companies by phone to speak with the vendor managers. AMCs like to work with appraisers that reach out to them and you might even get on their preferred list of appraisers.

Of course fees vary from one company to the next. I have not accepted less than customary and reasonable fees for many years now and I am not about to get started. A lot of these AMCs still work with the fees with appraisers as long as you explain the situation.

 

Well, I just wanted to let everyone know the new directory is available and you can order your copy today. Thanks again for being a valued subscriber to Appraiser Income! http://appraiserincome.com/shop/catalogue.php

Wishing you success in 2014,
Sincerely,
Bryan Knowlton
http://www.appraiserincome.com

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5th June 2013

“Checkbox Chimps” and Review Appraisals

by David Brauner and Isaac Peck – WorkingRE.com

Appraisers are coining a new term for certain appraisal management company (AMC) staff – “Checkbox Chimps.” These are the personnel who are “reviewing” appraisals, and no matter how solid they may be, are instructing appraisers to change their reports.

Are they really providing an “appraisal review” or are they just checking boxes on a form?

Are these personnel allowed to issue instructions to appraisers? Are their demands crossing the line from standard requests for additional information to subtle attempts at illegal influence and improper intrusion into the process?

Appraisers are being inundated by irrelevant requests like – instructions to re-label photographs, additional alternative street scenes or explaining the obvious – for instance, asking whether a porch is covered.

AMCs defend their quality control requests, arguing that if appraisers did their jobs correctly the first time… but appraisers ask, what does a covered porch have to do with quality control?

What bothers many appraisers these days- even more than low fees- is the constant and what seems like “unnecessary” challenges to their reports by AMC staff, who in many instances, appear to be less than qualified or competent than they are. Most appraisers know firsthand the extent to which this bogs down the process and negatively affects their efficiency and profitability. Not to mention delaying or killing deals. Few understand that some of this behavior may be at odds with state and federal regulation.

There are differences between what is proper and what is in violation of state and federal laws, according to expert Richard Hagar, SRA, as per the OREP/Working RE Webinar Appraisal Review and the Law.

Reviewing for “Completeness”
According to Hagar, employees of an AMC are permitted to “review” a report for completeness. They can ask questions to verify all required information is included- photographs, sketches, maps, flood numbers, certifications, signatures, etc.: Is the address correct; the homeowner’s name spelled correctly?

AMC staff is allowed to ask for additional information and clarifications that help the client understand the report. They are also allowed, in limited circumstances, to ask the appraiser to consider additional information that might not have been considered in the original appraisal. However, as Hagar states, there are limits on what is considered “additional information.” “In most of the instances that I’ve reviewed, the original appraiser already considered the ‘additional information’ that the AMC is asking about,” said Hagar. “So it appears that the AMC did not read the entire report, or failed to comprehend what they read.”

Review Appraising
While any AMC staff person is allowed to look at an appraisal and verify that it’s complete, only a state certified or licensed appraiser is permitted, by various state and federal laws, to challenge the appraiser on value or criticize the adequacy of the appraisal.

AMCs are trying to ignore or find wiggle room in how laws define “appraisal review” or what constitutes a challenge to an appraiser’s value or methodology. To most appraisers, this question is black and white.

According to Hagar, no one is allowed to have an opinion regarding the value of a property or the quality of an appraisal except a licensed/certified (review) appraiser. “Are AMC staff just reading the report and ensuring that it is complete? Or are they critiquing the quality of the report? Once someone starts questioning the quality of your comparables, or offering an opinion on the quality of a report, they have to be a licensed/certified appraiser, or they’re in violation of state law in most cases,” Hagar says. “If you go on to have an opinion regarding the report’s USPAP compliance, you have to be trained in USPAP.”

Hagar says to look at some of the lawsuits launched by the federal government against LandSafe and Bank of America. The suits contend that “reviewers” inside LandSafe were not just geographically incompetent and lacked proper training- in some instances they were not even licensed or certified. Yet these people were “reviewing appraisals” and telling good appraisers how to do their jobs!

So, it’s one thing to correct a typo and quite another to criticize an appraiser’s approach to value or comp selection. The line is crossed when “requesting clarification” turns into passing judgment on an appraisal, Hagar says.

Chapter and Verse
There are at least 32 states that have already approved AMC regulation legislation-these laws have not only mandated that any appraisal review be done by a licensed appraiser in that state, but they define a “review appraiser” and an “appraisal review,” effectively establishing guidelines on who is allowed to offer an “opinion” on the adequacy of an appraisal or make certain requests of an appraiser. For instance, the Arizona AMC Law states:

32-3601. Definitions
5. “Appraisal review” means the act of reviewing of the report that follows a review of an appraisal assignment or appraisal report in which a real estate appraiser forms an opinion as to the adequacy and appropriateness of the report being reviewed.
18. “Review appraiser” means a person who engages in the activity of reviewing and evaluating the appraisal work of others from the perspective of an appraiser, generally for compensation as a separate skill. This includes the function of reviewing an appraisal report or a file memorandum setting forth the results of the review process.

32-3603. License or certificate use; exception
A. All real estate appraisals and appraisal reviews performed on real property in this state shall be performed only by individuals licensed or certified in accordance with the requirements of this chapter.

According to Hagar, it’s not just state law, but there are also clauses in Dodd-Frank, FIRREA, and the Inter-Agency Guidelines that reinforce state laws and what they say about who can pass judgment on an appraisal. He also cites language from the Truth in Lending Act (TILA) in the webinar, which mandates appraisal reviews be completed by appraisers certified and licensed in the state in which the subject property is located.

Quoting Hagar from the webinar (Appraisal Review and the Law), he says: “Reviewing is no place for an amateur. Only the unaware, the misleading, the foolish, or the people who are attempting quick, simple and, cheap are trying to get around the laws.”

His advice: Do the job right and according to the law and we will all be better off.

If you would like a copy of the lawsuit against Landsafe and Bank of America, regarding their alleged use of uncertified appraisers, send a request to Isaac at issac@orep.org.

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21st May 2013

Best List of Appraisal Management Companies

http://www.newswire.net/newsroom/pr/73985-Best-Appraisal-Management-Company-Directory-Updated.html

With all the appraisers looking for real estate appraisal work, Appraiser Income has updated their 2013 Appraisal Management company Directory for all real estate appraisers looking for more work.

(Newswire.net — May 16, 2013) San Diego, CA — The Rules Have Changed – Appraisers Unable to Market Directly to Lender.

With the passing of Frank-Dodd a few years back, appraisers were no longer to market their appraisal services directly to mortgage companies and real estate brokers. Since that time the appraiser would need to contact a third-party company called an Appraisal Management Company.

The problem is that there are numerous unlicensed appraisal management companies and real estate appraisers that are signed up with AMCs that refer the work to appraisers under their license for a substantial fee cut.

Bryan Knowlton has been publishing a list of appraisal management companies since 2007 and has recently updated his AMC directory to help appraisers find more real estate orders in their area.

Appraisers Have More Option

With the release of the latest update of the Appraisal Management Company Directory, real estate appraisers that have followed the marketing and sign-up information that comes with the directory will help them get more appraisal orders.

Chapters Include:
– Maximize orders with Appraisal Management Companies
– The AMC Application Process
– Make more $$$ with an Appraisal Management Company
– Links to online applications and emails
– List of Common Errors to Avoid
– Vendor Specific AMC Requirements
– Ordered by which companies that SEND ORDERS!

Bonus Chapters Included:
– Recession Proof Your Appraisal Business for the future
– Appraisal Company Marketing and how to maximize income
– Top Revenue Generating Techniques for 2013
– Maximizing Internet Orders through a top ranking website
– FHA Checklist and common errors to avoid

If you are a real estate appraiser looking for more work in your area, you should definitely check out his most recent release which can be found at AppraiserIncome.com

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2nd April 2013

Metro West Hiring Certified Appraisers

Now Hiring Certified Residential Appraisers!

You can be a part of our team and keep the feeling of independence.

Stop wondering when you will receive your next order and allow yourself the peace of mind of having stable work. Since 1987 we have provided quality valuation products throughout the United States. We offer the appraiser more than just a job; we provide an opportunity to prosper in a valuation career.
Take shelter from the real estate industry storm and join our team!

Multiple compensation plans are available to help you reach your income goals!

As our valued team member you will enjoy the following benefits:

Non-exclusive contract
Guaranteed bi-weekly paychecks
Free ACI or a la mode software and 24/7 support team
Medical insurance benefit program
Dental insurance
Vision insurance
Workers’ compensation insurance
$15,000 life insurance policy
Flexible spending account available for health care and dependent care
Errors & Omissions insurance
Free USPAP training
Free access to tech support for home office PCs and all business software

Proactive and engaged marketing team developing new client and business relationships

Quality control appraisal advisors and status support available Monday – Friday 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. ET
Free CVR certification
Corporate partnership with DataMaster
Access to top research tools from Marshall & Swift
Employer FICA match, FUTA and SUTA taxes paid by Metro-West
401(k) retirement savings plan

EMAIL YOUR:

Resume
Two recent UAD sample appraisals (at least one 1004 w/MC form)
Coverage area
License

For consideration please submit to careers@metrowestappr.com:

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5th March 2013

Solutionstar Settlement Services Aquires Equifax Settlement Services

I got this email today:

Equifax Settlement Services is pleased to announce it has been acquired by Solutionstar and is no longer affiliated with Equifax Inc. Solutionstar has great plans to continue to build this business to be the best in the industry. Shortly, we will be rebranding ourselves as Solutionstar Settlement Services. We are committed to this business and look forward to working with you.

Please do not reply to this email. More information will soon follow from your dedicated Vendor Management team.

Hopefully this will mean they do not outsource their reviewers and customer service to INDIA anymore…

Bryan Knowlton

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17th January 2013

When asked not to disclose if property has CO detectors

Some appraisal management companies are asking those in California NOT TO disclose if there are or aren’t Carbon Monoxide Detectors located inside a home.

Laws were recently passed in some states requiring inspection for home inspectors.

(1) For all existing single-family dwelling units intended for
human occupancy on or before July 1, 2011.

(2) For all other existing dwelling units intended for human
occupancy on or before January 1, 2013.

(b) With respect to the number and placement of carbon monoxide
devices, an owner shall install the devices in a manner consistent
with building standards applicable to new construction for the
relevant type of occupancy or with the manufacturer’s instructions,
if it is technically feasible to do so.

(c) (1) Notwithstanding Section 17995, and except as provided in
paragraph (2), a violation of this section is an infraction
punishable by a maximum fine of two hundred dollars ($200) for each
offense.

(2) Notwithstanding paragraph (1), a property owner shall receive
a 30-day notice to correct. If an owner receiving notice fails to
correct within that time period, the owner may be assessed the fine
pursuant to paragraph (2).

(d) No transfer of title shall be invalidated on the basis of a
failure to comply with this section, and the exclusive remedy for the
failure to comply with this section is an award of actual damages
not to exceed one hundred dollars ($100), exclusive of any court
costs and attorney’s fees. This subdivision is not intended to affect
any duties, rights, or remedies otherwise available at law.

If you are asked not to report the use of CO detectors in an appraisal report, you can disclose the fact that you are not required to perform this inspection.

You can state the actual law, or bill #’s (Per WA State RCW 19.27.530 / CA State: Per CA Senate Bill – SB183: CO Alarm(s)) and disclose that the appraisal inspection does not require CO detectors to be installed. Proper CO detection unknown; testing not done.

Bryan Knowlton

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21st December 2012

Evaluation Solutions / ES Appraisal Services Goes Morally and Financially Bankrupt

Here is some more information on the latest AMC bankruptcy. How many more is it going to take to get some changes made in the industry? AppraiserLoft screwed hard working appraisers out of $3 Million in unpaid invoices.

I have a feeling Evaluation Solutions / ES Appraisal Services is going to double that figure, maybe even triple. They have been screwing appraisers for years now.

This is a letter from their bankruptcy attorney:

FROM: Stutsman Thames & Markey, P.A.

Our firm has been retained to file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy proceeding for the company. Evaluation Solutions lost its major client earlier this week and was forced to shut down operations. The fact that you are receiving this email means that you are in the system and we are aware of your claim. Once the Chapter 7 case is filed, you will receive a notice and instructions on what to do. A Trustee will be appointed to handle the claims administration process.

The company is not able to make payments on any outstanding invoices at this point.

This is a very large case. It will take our firm a week or two to get the necessary paperwork together. You should be receiving notice of the bankruptcy by mid to late January.

Thank you for your patience.

Brad Markey

Bradley R. Markey
Stutsman Thames & Markey, P.A.
50 N. Laura Street, Suite 1600
Jacksonville, Florida 32202
(904) 358-4000 (904) 358-4001 (Facsimile) brm@stmlaw.net

Additional articles on Evaluation Solutions / ES Appraisal Services:

– http://appraiserincome.com/2012/12/20/evaluation-solutions-es-appraisal-services-is-ceasing-operations-another-appraisersloft-amc-story/

http://appraiserincome.com/2012/02/14/es-appraisal-services-evalonline-com-not-paying-appraisers/

Sorry for the bad news so close to Christmas.

You can also try sending your CHASE invoices to: accounts.payable.research.team@jpmchase.com this is for chase only.

Bryan

posted in Appraisal Management Companies | 3 Comments

20th December 2012

Evaluation Solutions, ES Appraisal Services is ceasing operations – Another AppraisersLoft AMC Story…

I wasn’t surprised when I received this email today:

Due to unforeseen circumstances Evaluation Solutions, ES Appraisal Services is ceasing operations. Any inquires should be directed to :
Bradley R. Markey
Stutsman Thames & Markey, P.A.
50 N. Laura Street, Suite 1600
Jacksonville, Florida 32202
(904) 358-4000
(904) 358-4001 (Facsimile)
brm@stmlaw.net

I was notified not too long ago from Treasure Valley Factors were no longer factoring their invoices, so it appeared thing were getting worse.

There has been a lot of appraisers talking about problems getting paid from Evaluation Solutions, ES Appraisal services for a very long time since my initial post here:
ES Appraisal Services – Evalonline.com Not Paying Appraisers
http://appraiserincome.com/2012/02/14/es-appraisal-services-evalonline-com-not-paying-appraisers

If any appraisers have any ideas on how to get paid, please post them below.

I know contacting the original lender listed on the appraisal has worked in the past, so you might try that route as well. Make sure to contact the company listed above.

Please make comments below.

Thank you!

Bryan

posted in Appraisal Management Companies | 17 Comments



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