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AMC's - The bad guys or just what I'm looking for???

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Jay D. Greener

Freshman Member
Joined
Jul 4, 2002
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
Colorado
Hey all, I need some advice regarding AMC’s.

Most of the posts regarding AMC’s are pretty bad (they pay after 60 days, they take part of the appraiser’s cut, ect.), but I wonder if they’re all bad. One of the appraisers I work with has dealt with AMC’s in the past. He noted that they’re pretty demanding about schedule, but the one he dealt with didn’t demand a value – they just ordered an appraisal and requested a due date; and they paid – even if it was 60 days out, you’d still be paid regardless of value.

That sounds pretty appealing to me, after a week of getting beat up on values; I’d be willing to work for less (the AMC’s cut) if I didn’t have to spend an hour on each appraisal in ‘value estimate negotiations’.

What is the typical AMC cut?
Who are some of the better AMC’s to work with?
Do most AMC’s ‘demand a value’ or is this less common with AMC’s?

Thanks in advance for everyone’s input!
 

liznindy

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Indiana
Jay,

If you do reviews, I recommend Appraisal Enchancement Services. Nice, professional people to work with, pay is quick and reasonable...fees can be negotiated...
 

Mountain Man

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Georgia
Sooner or later, you'll run into LSI, they are one of the largest. I have not had any problems with them, they pay my full fees, and pay on time. But they do require good communication. Do NOT promise something you can't do..... they will call and fax you to death.

With all AMC's, communication is the key. Fees are always low, and negotiable...... I get my full fees. :wink:

P.S. As is the same with lenders...... the truly good, profession AMC’s won’t demand you hit a value. But you may see a request like "please call when you realize that you have a problem, but finish the report."
 
Joined
Jan 16, 2002
Don't get me wrong, this is not a personal attack - however, it is my opinion that anybody who does work for less than full fee simply degrades our profession, regardless if it's an AMC or not. There are plenty of lenders less demanding, and less annoying that the AMC's out there.
It's like all those annoying calls received everyday for free comp checks, and then they ALWAYS say..."the other appraisers do it". We need to start acting like professionals - name one profession that allows the user of a service to set the fees ? Attorneys ? Doctors ? Lawyers ? Architects ?
or even hair-cutters for that matter ? The next time you interface with somebody that requires you to pay them, tell them you're only willing to pay a fraction of the price.

Sorry for the rant, but this is a hot-button of mine.
 
K

Kevin Shannon

Guest
Jay,

I'd say about 75% of all our work comes from AMC's, 60% of that from one in particular. Very few hassles, payment every 2 weeks and most importantly no pressure for value.

Wouldn't have it any other way,

Kevin Shannon
 

Ross (CO)

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Colorado
Jay, ...... It appears you are going through the learning curve quite well. You will find some appraisers can speak of great experiences with them, while others have no kind words to say. And that, can be the very same company. There are varied layers of heirarchy and personality within most companies.....just hope that you can get off on a good foot with the individual who assigns the orders for your state. You should not have to go through value "negotiations" with anyone, period, and if that becomes a real stone wall, then you are seeing clear proof that they are not as concerned with providing quality and low-risk services to their clientele. You have to present a clean report, with fast turn-time, and prepare to communicate several times about appmt. setting, and simple conflicts with the order itself, like incorrect address, wrong phone numbers, and possible explanation of their scope of the work before you get too far into it. They can meet your normal full fee if you get a chance to prove your turn-time, quality and thoroughness of diligence, ie. get no follow-up calls after submitting report. Can you keep one of them as a regular client for more than 1 year, perhaps more then 6 months ? That's often tough to do. They will shuffle staff around like a Vegas dealer shuffles cards....then you just may be "starting over" again.

Eventually, it is going to happen, and you will be cast aside for their benefit of getting cheaper work from another appraiser. Many of them are also fully engaged in developing alternative valuation products for their clients, and moving toward or directly requesting your availing the data of your report in a "mining-friendly" manner so to support their artificial valuation processes. Develop the relationship with your contact person, keep your fingers crossed, and continually re-sell your turn-time and lack of follow-up calls (to you) after you submit the report. Even that, is no guarantee for longevity. As for typical fee "cuts", don't worry about it. You quote what is acceptable to YOU, look for that number on the order you get, and that is what your check should show. Some pay every two weeks, and others struggle to get your money out in 3 to 4 months. You will never exactly know what their client is paying them for their overall services......you focus on your fee. (They are getting paid much more for the "appraisal" than you might think !) You can get on a good flow of regular business with some, think that all is great, then submit one or two in a row that were laced with "problems" from the start, and maybe came in with a value less than 5 other persons had thought possible......and all of a sudden.....it's, heh !, who turned out the lights ?
 

Karl

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
Arizona
In order to do a professional job as I am sure U do & I am sure that is why lenders use U for a clearing house I must charge this amount if U find my services to be what U expect IE keep up to date through communication, a report that is USUALLY acceptable first time sent in, a heads up whenever I see a problem occur ETC ETC Hopefully we'll have a long term relationship. If my services are not up to par with your professional standards then U may want to look for a cheaper alternative. This should get U your full FEE.
 

Keith

Sophomore Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
North Carolina
Hi Jay!

You are correct in my book, AMC's DO have some benefits. Especially for the bigger shops (man at top makes money, while trainees get experience).

Do you want to work for AMC's after you are on your own? It depends on your location and experience. Many lenders will not use you until you get 5 yrs or more under your belt. So, in many cases, you may have to use AMC's to survive.

The most "applealing" thing about this business is making a living. I never said you could do that with an AMC ;)
 

John Hassler

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 23, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
California
I'm with Joe on this one. Overall AMC's cheapen the profession.

My advise to you, Jay, is to hold your ground with the clients you have. You will find that the clients who are always working you will go somewhere else and the ones you keep will be the ones you want. This is a good time to filter out the bad clients as there is so much work out there. Personally, I am always looking to improve the quality of my clients and I don't see AMCs as the way to do this.

John Hassler
 

Mountain Man

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Georgia
AMC's are here to stay; Get use to it. Lenders don't want keep up with the approval packages for a thousand appraisers across the country. They don't want their LO tracking down title or appraisal people, they want them out there selling more money. And yes, the big lenders have found out how to make mo' money by owning the AMC's and upcharging our bills. But I still get my full fee, or I don't crank the engine.
 
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