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

Appraisal Services Expand

Recent appraisal services activity

May 14, 2013

By AIMEE BROWN Mortgage Daily

Though no new standalone products have recently been introduced, the appraisal business was abuzz with partnerships, product upgrades and new product features. Two companies reported financial growth, one of which celebrated a ten-year anniversary, and two more underwent identity changes.

On April 15, Veros Real Estate Solutions announced its direct distributor status of Freddie Mac's Home Value Suite.

The automated valuation model uses property data from Freddie's loan portfolios, information from the government-sponsored enterprise's 12 non-disclosure states portfolio and appraisal information from the Uniform Collateral Data Portal.

Citizen's Equity First Credit Union implemented Sapphire, Veros' valuation management platform. According to Veros' Feb. 26 press release, Citizen’s will use Sapphire to automate its previously manual appraisal management process.

Pennsylvania-based Global DMS released news, on Jan. 23, of its valuation management software integration with LendingQB's loan origination system. The integration allows LendingQB's LOS users to use Global DMS' eTrac system for valuation tasks without leaving their LOS.

Elsewhere, Global DMS -- a Mortgage Daily advertiser -- took preparation steps to handle growing demand for its valuation management software and continuing company growth. The Feb. 13 company statement revealed Global DMS hired several new employees and found larger headquarters, in the Philadelphia area, to accommodate the increased staff. The software provider, which celebrated its 10-year anniversary on Mar. 6 and reported that it was named a small business impact finalist for Pennsylvania's Governor's Impact Awards on April 23, reported a 105 percent net revenue increase from 2011 to 2012.

Appraisal technology provider InHouse Inc. added new underwriter queues to its appraisal process management platform, InHouse Connexions. According to the April 15 media release, the new queues allow appraisal underwriting and Platinum Data electronic appraisal review ordering and processing without leaving Connexions. As well, mortgage underwriters can stay in the system while making notes and sending conditions to appraisers.

On March 27, Bradford Technologies Inc. announced its launch of CompCruncher 3, the third generation of the company's product. Originally, CompCruncher introduced statistical support to collateral valuations but was available only through their valuation product called collateral valuation report. The latest version now offers statistical analysis for traditional appraisals and assigns an S designation to statistically supported appraisals.

According to an April 2 press release, appraisal management company United States Appraisals joined the Collateral Risk Network, an organization that works to resolve risk and compliance obstacles that collateral risk professionals face. The AMC is a Mortgage Daily advertiser.

A February advertisement for Appraisal Logistics' appraisal compliance and management services highlighted the need for lenders to demand full appraisal fee transparency. According to the promotion, lenders, not their AMC, may be in violation of appraisal regulations if their AMC is giving work to the lowest bidder, to the appraiser with the fastest turnaround or both.

Rockville, Md.-based CoesterVMS, an AMC, launched its web-accessible CFPB Suite, which gives lenders the ability to check its third-party vendor Consumer Financial Protection Bureau compliance status on every appraisal conducted. In addition to accessing related activities on each third-party regulation and verifying vendor compliance, the April 15 news statement said users could gather supporting information on each rule so they know what steps Coester took to stay compliant.

SharperLending LLC partnered with Ellie Mae for direct-data integration. According to the April 26 press release, SharperLending's Appraisal Firewall will connect with Ellie's Encompass360 LOS. This partnership will allow Encompass360 users to seamlessly connect to and work with their local appraisers, obtain quality control valuation services and ensure appraisal regulatory compliance.

Texas-based ValuTrac Software was abuzz with a financial growth report on April 1. The company said its revenue increased 110 percent in 2013's first quarter compared to last year's numbers. ValuTrac attributed this revenue spike to mortgage industry adoption of their appraisal management technology.

Also in April, ValuTrac revealed a technological partnership with Platinum Data Solutions. ValuTrac will integrate its appraisal management system ValuTrac Pro with Platinum's appraisal data quality verification tool RealView.

IRR-Residential, a real estate appraisal servicer for lenders and attorneys, broke away from its parent company Integra Realty Resources and changed names to Accurity Valuation. The Mar. 25 announcement said the company will continue serving its clients through a wider national network of appraisers. As Accurity, the ownership, board of directors and corporate management has changed. Thomas Munizzo, former IRR-Residential chief appraiser and compliance officer, was named Accurity's president.

In final news, Value Services LLC revealed its new name on April 8. Originally Reese Appraisal and later, an IRR-Residential affiliate, Value's company news release said the name change reflects increasing industry demand for an appraisal market focused on value and service. As well, Value launched a new website and plans to debut a new appraisal product that addresses the industry's most urgent valuation needs.

"Today's tumultuous housing market has made the job of valuation real estate particularly challenging," Value President Jennifer Reese's said in a media statement. "At the same time, all appraisal customers deserve the comfort of knowing their orders will receive the utmost attention and workmanship."

By this story's deadline, Reese could not be reached for comment on the new appraisal product.

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