Lenders consider Attic, Crawl Space Inspections when ordering Apraisal

Real Estate Appraiser with Lanier Appraisal Service CR004373

As many of you know the HUD Handbook 4000.1 rolled out in 2015. The result was requiring Appraisers to be more of an inspector than any time before...Why? My guess is to save money, but they are raising their Lending Risk factor considerably. 

Appraisers are NOT qualified to Enter into Crawl Spaces (required) and check for water intrusion, termite infestation, Structures of the joists, etc. They are also NOT qualified to inspect the Attic spaces to find issues. Not only are they not qualified they should NOT have to take on the added risks associated with this activity. Appraisers are VALUATION experts not Inspectors. 

Here is a thought. Why don't Lenders Pay Appraisers a bit more than the Conventional Appraisal fee (since they also have to check all appliances that transfer with the home including dishwashers, HVAC, washer and dryers, security systems, garbage disposals, etc) and then at the same time ORDER their own inspection of just attics and crawl spaces. The total cost would not be much more than they pay the Appraiser for an FHA appraisal AND they reduce lending risk as the have the EXPERT providing reports on these 2 important sections of the home. 

I have talked to a local inspector here in Georgia and he will do a complete attic and crawl inspection report for $150.00 including photos. You pay the appraiser $350.00 to $400.00 in this area for a typical report, so if you also pay $150.00 that means total payment of $500.00 to $550.00 which is NOT that much more than some lenders are paying now for FHA. Trust me most Appraisers would much prefer the inspector doing this work over them. 

Also lenders will have TOTAL control over selection of the inspector just like they do the Appraiser. For the same reasons you took control over the Appraiser selection, you can take control over the selection of an INDEPENDENT inspector for this service. It just make sense!

Think about it....Appraisers need not be put into the position they are in currently with the new Handbook requirements. They are not paid enough for the liability or the potential danger involved. Many lender made NO change in their fees with the introduction of the new Handbook requirements. That is not fair and does not make sense. Time and expertise cost money and lenders need to step up to the plate and pay the proper experts the proper amount of money for the service they provide.


Thanks for stopping by...... 





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Kristin Johnston - REALTOR®
RE/MAX Realty Center - Waukesha, WI
Giving Back With Each Home Sold!

Interesting...i didnt think that they looked in the attic mostly around here

Jan 13, 2016 10:26 PM #1
Sara Goodwin
Ashcroft & Associates - Portland, OR
Portland, Oregon Appraiser

Thanks Mary - This is just one of the reasons that I've decided to decline FHA orders - Many years ago, it was an FHA requirement to have an FHA certified inspector inspect houses for purchases.  I would rather go that route again than pretend I'm a home inspector.

Feb 01, 2016 08:37 AM #2
Mary Thompson
Lanier Appraisal Service - Flowery Branch, GA
Lake Lanier Appraiser in North Georgia

I hear you big time Sara!!! Same here

Feb 02, 2016 07:06 AM #3
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Mary Thompson

Lake Lanier Appraiser in North Georgia
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