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We have an issue facing our industry in many markets. We simply have too many appraisal orders and appraisal demands, but not enough licensed appraisers. Appraisers are getting older on average and the barrier to entry and internship timeline seems challenging and concerning for the future with anyone looking to become a new licensed appraiser. Current regulations and requirements certainly make this more difficult, and as an industry, we need to work together to find a solution for the consumers that are negatively impacted.
I am in the state of Oregon, one of the worst markets in the country presently for appraisal demands and turn-times. The average was just recently extended to approximately four weeks from delivery from order. We all know this fluctuates, but when it is bad … it’s very bad. I understand that Colorado is facing some major issues as well, and we’re hearing the same from most other states out there. We have to constantly reset expectations and speak for these third parties which can be frustrating when dates are not met.
We have also seen appraisers unable to meet the agreed due date (even if extended out) or responding to minor corrections very slowly. These delays cause issues for buyer and sellers and as we all know we rely on this report to confirm the value and also issue the Closing Disclosure (CD) to start that timeline as well prior to closing. Our hands are tied by these third parties and the accountability is simply non-existent. Again, we need to all come together and find a solution.
The main objective now while we deal with this issue is the ensure real estate agents are writing accurate closing dates and setting accurate expectations. I also ask them (providing they can talk with the appraiser) to demand a faster delivery date. If any are negative or aggressive toward you as the lender on appraisal turn-times, make sure they understand that you calling them and asking them or their staff why the appraisal is taking so long would be considered the same thing. They need to be educated to stop linking the appraiser with the lender.
Maybe the appraisal industry can create classes for these current licensed appraisers on time management and how to effectively structure their day to balance physical inspections with in-office comparable work. There has to be a way to reduce the time and balance workload for faster results. Biting off more than you can chew at the expense of others due to lower compensation is not helpful for our industry and consumers buying and selling homes with appraisal costs at an all-time high.
What are you seeing in your market? Do you feel it’s more difficult for someone to become a licensed appraiser today or do they lack the resources? Please share stories below or on the Facebook group page. We are interested to collecting data and working to find a solution and addressing these issues with lawmakers and regulators.
Are you an originator? Send your stories! To have topics considered in future editions, please e-mail me with “OrigiNation” in the subject line at [email protected] These can be confidential or your name and company can be referenced if you wish. You can also join the Facebook group by searching “OrigiNation.”
Andy W. Harris, CRMS is president and owner of Lake Oswego, Ore.-based Vantage Mortgage Group Inc. and past president of the Oregon Association of Mortgage Professionals. He may be reached by phone at (877) 496-0431, e-mail [email protected] or visit VantageMortgageGroup.com.
This article originally appeared in the July 2016 print edition of National Mortgage Professional Magazine.