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Appraisal News | AMC Directory
Appraisal industry news coverage, including stories about independence requirements, AVMs and appraiser fraud.

Survey Suggests AMC Appraiser Drive Distances Low

TAVMA surveys members

Nov. 11, 2009

By staff

The implementation of the Home Valuation Code of Conduct has led to accusations that appraisers are doing work in markets they are not familiar with. But a new survey by an appraisal trade group refutes such statements.

The average distance traveled by appraisers who are used by the largest appraisal management companies is 13 miles, according to a poll of Title-Appraisal Vendor Management Association members.

AMCs determine appraiser travel distance using either Geo-coding, zip-code-to-zip-code mapping, or order-form instructions that limit distance, a news release from the trade association indicated.

The Pittsburgh-based group reportedly represents more than 75 companies, including more than 40 of the biggest AMCs with a combined AMC market share of 85 percent. TAVMA claims AMCs account for 60 percent of all residential appraisals.

The statement indicated that 63 percent of all U.S. appraisers work with AMCs, while most AMC appraisers are independent local appraisers.

The report was prepared in response to "unsubstantiated statements that AMCs send out-of-market appraisers great distances to value properties," according to TAVMA Executive Director Jeff Schurman. "Based on what our members are reporting to us, that's simply not the case."

Schurman said that the group will begin reporting average drive distances quarterly.

Steve Haslam, chief executive officer of StreetLinks National Appraisal Services -- an AMC and a advertiser -- acknowledged in the statement that some appraisers drive farther distances in states like Montana and Wyoming. But even in markets that are spread out over larger territories, AMC appraisers stay within their "sphere of professional expertise."

Haslam emphasized that AMC appraisers are licensed, certified and required to refuse assignments in unfamiliar markets under the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice.

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