This morning I received the following letter from the only AMC with a marginally real estate educated staff and near full fee appraisals that I accept appraisals from.
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In an effort to reduce overall costs, [E] Services has began an initiative to lower vendor fees for all single family, multi-family, drive-by, review, and FHA reports. This fee reduction will lower your current fees by 10% and will go into effect 2/18/2010. This reduction in prices will place our fees more in line with competitive prices in the current market place.
If you do not wish to comply, please email Fee_reduction@eservices.com by 2/12/2010. If we receive no response, then it will be assumed that you have found the changes acceptable.
We value your partnership and we understand that there are concerns with our current billing process. In an effort to expedite your payments you will now be able to receive payments Bi-weekly. Starting 2/18/2010 you will be able to invoice once a completed report is removed from your work in progress. The preferred method of billing would be logging onto the website and clicking "E Invoice" as this is the fastest method of payment.
Thank you for your cooperation and we look forward to your continued partnership with [E] Services.
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Although the letter above indicates that they will be cutting their fees by 10% (something I could accept and live with), I received a call this week from the same company asking if I would cut my fees over 50% 'in order to be competitive' with other appraisers in the area I cannot. Whether it be due to pride for myself and other appraisers or simple logistics of expenses vs time vs value, I cannot.
Now I wonder... how long can I keep up the 'cannots'? When the savings are used up, and there are no other options, I'm going to have to determine whether to stay in this industry that I love or move on.