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Appraisal industry news coverage, including stories about independence requirements, AVMs and appraiser fraud.


Valuation Insights

Service providers offer valuation products

July 8, 2011

By SAM GARCIA MortgageDaily.com


portrait of Sam Garcia

The valuation industry faces a growing wave of regulation, and service providers have geared up to help lenders and appraisers comply. Technology is at the heart of many recent offerings, while others were enhanced through integrations.

Appraisal management company Nationwide Appraisal Network reported in May that it had become certified as an AMC in each of the 19 states that has AMC registration. The most-recent certification was in Oklahoma.

Nationwide said that all 50 states will soon have AMC registration requirements.

Lenders can use Mercury Network as an appraisal-submission platform for Fannie Mae's and Freddie Mac's Uniform Collateral Data Portal, a recent news release from a la mode indicated. The UCDP went live on June 27 will be required on all conventional appraisals as of March 18, 2012 with loan application dates on or after Dec. 1 of this year.

"We've heard from many lenders over the past few months who think they're ready because vendors have told them they've got it under control," said a la mode Chief Operating Officer Sean Shiplet in the statement "But when they take a closer look, it's clear they're not. For example, many lenders are still relying on appraisal data extracted from PDFs to satisfy the GSEs, but it is our understanding that this method will cause delays in their pipelines and they'll be hit with file conversion fees on top of the delays."

Back in April, Veros Real Estate Solutions said that its VeroSELECT and Valuation Risk Management platforms were fully functional and ready to deliver appraisals that were compliant with the UCDP, the Uniform Appraisal Dataset and the Uniform Mortgage Data Program. Veros Sales Vice President Chris Gowen called on lenders at the time "to get on board early and not wait until March 2012 to begin utilizing" the UCDP.

Also in April, a strategic alliance between LendingXpress and Integrated Asset Services is expected to enable the marketing of valuation products that meet interagency guidelines for home-equity lending.

Earlier that month, Solidifi U.S. said its Solidifi iQ 2.0 was an upgrade to a scorecard that debuted in 2009. Scores ranging from zero to 1,000 are determined based on the appraiser's last 10 reports, according to the Mortgage Daily advertiser.

Solidifi previously noted that its service passed compliance tests for five major aspects of the new regulatory environment.

A Retrospective Broker Price Opinion report was launched in May by BrokerPriceOpnion.com. The Westminster, Colo.-based valuation firm said that the tool is used to help identify if mortgage fraud was involved in the original transaction as well as for probate, divorce and bankruptcy cases. The reports are conducted by one of the company's more than 65,000 licensed real estate brokers, agents and appraisers.

In addition to market data backing up its estimated value as of a prior date, BrokerPriceOpnion's retrospective report includes a historical analysis of the subject property's neighborhood. It also reflects local and regional historical market information and trends.

Earlier this year, BrokerPriceOpinion unveiled a property inspection report which utilizes an automated valuation model as well as verification of the physical condition of the property and full photo documentation.

A similar report, REALcondition, was previously announced by Platinum Data Solutions -- though AVMs are not part of this service. The offering provides a comprehensive exterior property value analysis based on a physical site visit to the subject property. Platinum claims that relying solely on an AVM leaves lenders lacking an adequate condition assessment.

An expected increase in jumbo loan activity prompted SettlementOne Valuation to recently develop a "deluxe appraisal panel" comprised of "elite" and certified residential appraisers for jumbo reports. The San Diego-based company also set up a quote desk to determine the appraisal fee and established a quality-control team to ensure USPAP compliance and compliance with specific lender underwriting guidelines.

Bradford Technologies announced that its the AppraisalWorld national network of CVR Specialists integrated with Global DMS' eTrac appraisal process management software -- a move that was expected to make it easier to order, track and manage collateral valuation reports. The report "is more reliable than a broker price opinion, and faster and less expensive than a traditional appraisal."

Global DMS, a Mortgage Daily advertiser, had just released an update of its OASISOne online technology platform.

DartAppraisal.com announced last month an integration with RealEC Technologies Inc. The collaboration promises to "transform a client's PC or LOS system into a safe, secure and fully integrated portal for the fulfillment of real estate appraisals."

PLATINUMdata Solutions' REALview collateral valuation review technology has been integrated into Encompass360 platform. Aliso Viejo, Calif.-based PLATINUMdata says that the service cross-checks and analyzes each appraisal against thousands of Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice guidelines and appraisal data factors, In addition, REALview said it verifies appraiser license status and ties in public record data and other local market data to help validate the appraisal information.

An automated portal for ordering commercial real estate appraisals has been established by SharperLending LLC for its Appraisal Firewall product, a recent news release indicated. Lenders can reportedly order appraisals from trusted local appraisers while complying with all appraisal regulations.

MDA Lending Solutions and MDA MindBox have been integrated into DataQuick as a result of TPG Capital's acquisition of MDA DataQuick. The combined organization's offerings include appraisal, credit and other closing services.

InHouse Inc. began providing appraisal credentials in its appraisal management system last March. The feature automatically verifies appraiser licensing credentials with the National Registry of State Certified and Licensed Appraisers and allows the assignment of an AMC that is properly licensed in the state in which an appraisal has been ordered. Appraisers' errors and omissions and license status are automatically tracked for mortgage firms, and appraisers are automatically notified when their license is expiring.

InHouse said it credential management feature prevents orders from being placed with an appraiser or AMC lacking the appropriate credentials and costs only $5 per report.

A white paper from Veros Real Estate Solutions promises to prove how AVMs help improve portfolio and risk management analytics and optimize capital investment allocations. It's the first of three reports focusing on AVM technology and its various applications to the secondary investment market.

Financial Regulation News | Mortgage Regulations
Bank and mortgage regulators, regulations and regulatory actions. Coverage of regulatory legislation and testimony.

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Mortgage Compliance News | Mortgage Compliance Newsletter | Mortgage Regulations
News about complying with mortgage laws, rules and regulations.



Sam Garcia founded Mortgage Daily in 1998 and became its full-time publisher in 2000. Before that, he worked in mortgage lending for two decades.

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