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Please don't shoot the messenger -- we are not the enemy!

Real Estate Appraiser with Appraisal Pros in Texas

As an appraiser I have a job to do!  It appears as though many in the mortgage and real estate industries forget that my job is to bring the message whether it is good or bad (translate that into under value or at value or above).   With the information that I provide a lending decision is made -- sometimes the answer is NO and rightly so. 

 Have you ever said: "IF the appraisal doesn't come in at this value then I can't make the deal work." ?

If you are given a value that is below that needed amount  you are still using my work product to determine that this deal will not work.   It is not my job to "make the deal work" and just because there is a seller and a buyer who agree on a price that does not mean that is the market value of the property.  Some buyers are using their heart to make a decision not their common sense or maybe they just aren't that well informed..for instance, a California buyer who just sold a property for $800,000 and is buying a $250,000 property in Tennessee.  To him it sounds like a steal but in reality given the local market it may not be worth that much. 

Am I the one making the lending decision? NO, of course not....I am the one who is supposed to provide  an honest opinion of market value and therefore just the messenger...please don't shoot!

 Okay, by now you are probably thinking I must have had a bad day or maybe I received flak over an appraisal that didn't make value or maybe just that my panties are in a bunch...well, I actually just feel like venting...LOL...and hope that someone out there will understand next time the value wasn't there.  This has been on my mind for a while now and thanks to ActiveRain I have a place to vent to.  


Disclaimer:  This is not directed toward any one person or group in particular....and no agents were harmed in the posting of this blog.  No offense meant and I hope none was taken.








Nancy Brenner
Referral Associates of Georgia, Inc. - Roswell, GA
Roswell Georgia Real Estate Agent
Alisa - I certainly wouldn't want to be in your shoes these days.  We really do know that you're not appraising to appease us.  You work for the bank.  I really do understand that the bank does not want to lend more money than a house is worth....   but.....   it really kills us when the appraisal is so close but just dosn't quite make it.  It's just like missing a spare by "that much". 
Oct 09, 2007 11:51 AM
Charlene Capici
Garabedian Realty Group - Long Beach Island, NJ
Broker Manager
Thanks for the informative post.  We shouldnt be so hard on you appraisers.
Oct 09, 2007 12:01 PM
Ginger Magoon
Remax - Bryan College Station - College Station, TX
Bryan, College Station Texas Real Estate
I agree with Nancy I would not want to be in your shoes either.  From what I hear the guideline appraisers are having to follow are very strict and rigid.  You appraise to appease us you lose lisc.
Oct 09, 2007 12:50 PM
Alisa McKeel Willson
Appraisal Pros in Texas - Huntsville, TX
Certified Res. Appraiser

Nancy, Charlene and Ginger...thanks for the kind words.  I wasn't looking for sympathy but boy it feels good!! LOL...

Appraising is hard right now -- no appraiser wants to "kill a deal" as it is called. And I for one am no different.  It is disheartening when a prospective buyer can't have the home of his/her dreams.

Even harder are the people all ready in homes and that are now upside down in their loans with paymentsthat are increasing and you know an appraisal isn't going to help them.  They want to refinance and can't.





Oct 09, 2007 01:02 PM
Sara Goodwin
Estimation Nation Corporation - Portland, OR
Portland, Oregon Appraiser

"Have you ever said: "IF the appraisal doesn't come in at this value then I can't make the deal work." ?"

Every day, Alisa... E-V-E-R-Y D-A-Y

Thanks for the vent... it's as if it made me exhale a bit easier, too :-)

Oct 09, 2007 01:04 PM
Robert Elfand
Oviedo, FL
In today's equity strapped climate, I hear that phrase mainly from mortgage brokers that are agressively trying to shop a deal and...for an appraiser.  Most agents that I do business with usually "know" when the value vs contract price may be an issue as they see the inventory and sales (or lack thereof).
Oct 09, 2007 01:11 PM
Jeremy Cowin
Jeremy Cowin Appraisals - Altadena, CA
I do a lot of work for new construction loans here in So Cal.  I usually don't get a lot of pressure for these types of loans, but today I told my client that this new construction that was being built was too risky for me due to no comps for 36 months, no comps within 15 miles (and for Malibu, that is no big deal as Malibu runs 20+ miles along the coast) and that the new construction was possibly overbuilt even for Malibu.  My upfront honesty and further discussion and issues with the property, let him know that his deal was probably too risky even for him.  He appreciated my input, stated I was the first appraiser too let him know "why" other appraisers and lenders had not taken the job and as a result he sent over 3 other orders.  So sometimes the honesty pays off.  This is rare.  I turned away 2 orders this week due to comps checks and being pressured for value.  I also did 2 appraisals that came in significantly lower than what they wanted or needed for LTV ratio..... my clients didn't like it, but they got the message once I explained.  Todays mortgage industry is getting hit hard due to the ability of reporting martgage fraud, tighter restrictions on lending, etc., and they are fighting to stay alive as much as we are as appraisers.  Its not easy to do the right, and I understand your venting.  But keep up the good work! 
Oct 09, 2007 03:28 PM