Industry News Blog


The Appraisal Institute is requesting that HUD clarify on the HUD-1 the fees that are being paid to AMCs as “Origination” or “Other Settlement Services,” so borrowers are aware that the increase is due to a third party vendor, and not an increase of appraisal fees.

Click here to read the letter from The Appraisal Institute.


Fire Your Appraisal Management Company

Lenders and appraisers alike are finding their dependence on appraisal management companies (AMC) is not necessary.  Lenders can remain compliant and appraisers don't have to compromise quality and lower their fees when an appraisal independence management system (AIMS) is in place. 

03/22/2010 released its Fourth-Quarter 2009 Regulatory Actions report that points to a potential increase of bank failures.  The latest findings, 1,311 regulatory orders, show a more than 100 percent increase actions against banks, credit unions and thrifts.   This includes a significant growth in cease-and-desist orders. noted that banks that fail often face cease-and-desist orders prior to their closure.


The Appraisal Institute, along with the American Society of Appraisers, the American Society of Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers, and the National Association of Independent Fee Appraisers, have released a list of principles they say AMCs should follow. 

Click here to read the draft. 


AIMSdashboard has released the latest version of its Web-based Appraisal Independence Management System (AIMS), featuring several compliance-focused additions.  AIMS 4.4 will promote lender compliance with the appraisal independence requirements of the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP), Federal Housing Administration (FHA) Mortgagee Letter 09-28, Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) and the Home Valuation Code of Conduct (HVCC). ...


Four appraisal organizations are expressing concerns about the Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives (HAFA) program allowing broker price opinions to determine the value of properties for the minimum offer of a short sale. 

The Appraisal Institute, the American Society of Appraisers, the American Society of Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers, and the National Association of Independent Fee Appraisers have banded together to oppose the current HAFA guidelines.


Tony Pistilli, a Certified Residential Appraiser and Vice-Chair, Minnesota Department of Commerce,
questions the unearned fees AMCs are collecting and how this remains acceptable under RESPA guidelines.  And why isn’t the bank paying for the third-party to be hired by the bank, instead of the borrower and subsequently the appraiser?

I think we are all asking the same question, Mr. Pistilli.


An Appraisal Institute member warned consumers that an automated valuation model (AVM) Web site,, may be offering value assessments that are not reflective of true value.  Mark Hepner warned consumers about discrepancies between’s home values and those determined by a qualified appraiser.  He said the estimates often contained faulty information and/or neglect to account for home improvement.


Does HVCC policies require a certain selection method? AIMSdashboard President Chris Williams answers this question for a concerned lender.

He asked:

How are appraisers assigned?  As part of HVCC, does the lender and/or AMC assign appraisals based on the company itself (ex: 1 company = 1 assignment) or individual appraisers (ex: 5 appraisers = 5 assignments). I would just like to know how assignments are typically sent out and is it per HVCC regulation?



The average appraisal fee nationwide is $351, according to a la mode, Inc.'s latest edition of The Appraisal Fee Reference.  What I find interesting is that it is unclear exactly what the data they garnished represents.  They say the fee data is taken from verified and validated appraisals, but is that the borrower fee and NOT actually what the appraiser is putting in his pocket?

What do you think?