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Houston area VA panel question

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H. Robert Murray III

Thread Starter
Freshman Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2002
Hello,
I would like to get on the Houston,TX VA fee panel. Any tips from those who have been on it on how to get approved. FYI, I have inquired a few times over the past 15 years and their response is that the panel is full.
Thanks
 

Leon Stewart

Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
The VA Roster stays full, that's the way they operate, you have to know someone to get on. I'm not from Houston but in some areas the person leaving the Roster is allowed to recommend their replacement. I'm not on it, but I know of some who got on by going through their U.S. Representative.

Leon
 

H. Robert Murray III

Thread Starter
Freshman Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2002
Thanks for the suggestion.

I have thought of that, but I really did not want to take that route; but I might try it.

Thanks
 

Charlotte Dixon

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Delaware
I'm not from your part of the country, but from Delaware. It took me five years of continuous letter writing and follow up phone calls. I knew no one, either panel member or polititian. No one recommended me. I got on the panel from just plain hard work and persistence. No one died (as the old story goes) so I could get on. My packets and letters arrived at the regional office on a monthly basis, as did my calls inquiring if they received my packet. When my area grew and new construction started booming, they needed to add to their existing panel. And, when they made that decision, they decided to add me, probably so the packets and calls would stop. :wink: By that time I was on a first name basis with 4 people at the regional office. :D
 

Leon Stewart

Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Charlotte:

It seem as if you are contradicting yourself. You indicated that you didn't know anyone, but later in your post you indicated that by the time you got on the Panel you was on a first name basis with at least 4 individuals at the Regional Level.

I don't know for sure, but it appears as if you are in a small Market with a few Appraisers. In Large Urban Markets Like Houston, there are probably hundreds of Appraisers on the VA's Waiting List , and the Roster is always full, and they might not add more than one or two a year (if that). Plus there is no systematic way of selecting who they add. They might claim it based on qualification, but when you look deeper into their selection process you will find that's not the case.

Just like you said, someone just "decided" to put you on the Roster. You didn't have a clue as to how you was selected, and who you was in competition with, if anybody at all. All of a sudden you was on. That's what you call a political system when the selection process is not fully defined. The process is not published, and literally no one outside of the VA's Appraisal Department known how the selection was made. There are never any publications or advertisements indicating that there will be any openings which would allow them to get several applications at one specific time, make a selection from that current list and publish the results. I've never known the VA to do that, so that in itself lets you know that the system is political, or somewhat of a closed process.

Leon
 

Charlotte Dixon

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Delaware
Charlotte:

It seem as if you are contradicting yourself. You indicated that you didn't know anyone, but later in your post you indicated that by the time you got on the Panel you was on a first name basis with at least 4 individuals at the Regional Level.

I don't know for sure, but it appears as if you are in a small Market with a few Appraisers. In Large Urban Markets Like Houston, there are probably hundreds of Appraisers on the VA's Waiting List , and the Roster is always full, and they might not add more than one or two a year (if that). Plus there is no systematic way of selecting who they add. They might claim it based on qualification, but when you look deeper into their selection process you will find that's not the case.

Just like you said, someone just "decided" to put you on the Roster. You didn't have a clue as to how you was selected, and who you was in competition with, if anybody at all. All of a sudden you was on. That's what you call a political system when the selection process is not fully defined. The process is not published, and literally no one outside of the VA's Appraisal Department known how the selection was made. There are never any publications or advertisements indicating that there will be any openings which would allow them to get several applications at one specific time, make a selection from that current list and publish the results. I've never known the VA to do that, so that in itself lets you know that the system is political, or somewhat of a closed process.

Leon

Leon....Evidently, I didn't make my self clear. Sorry if I was confusing and it appeared I was contradicting myself. What I am saying is...I knew no one politically connected, I had no friends at the V.A., I knew no V.A. appraisers so they could recommend me. I simply worked hard with my eye on the target. I didn't apply once or twice and forget it. I sent samples and letters, then followed up with phone calls EVERY month for 5 years. They had stacks of my samples and letters and I'm sure they all were glanced at and probably trashed. But they kept receiving my mailings and calls on a regular basis. When I said I knew 4 people on a first name basis after these repeated mailings and calls....wouldn't you think that would be possible? After all, 60+/-phone calls and mailings over a 5 year period from a pesky appraiser would certainly get name recognition, if only to avoid the call. Yes, we are in a small market. Delaware is 92 miles long and 46 miles wide. We now have 7 or 8 V.A. fee appraisers for Delaware. You choose to call it a closed process. I choose to say, if you want something bad enough, work hard, go after it and don't make excuses such as "closed process" if you don't get it.
 

Restrain

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 22, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Florida
If the VA Panel in Houston is like the North Texas VA panel, they use retired Good-Ol Boys that they know. The appraisers are pathetic but are protected by the VA administrators. In fact, I know one VA appraiser that does only VA loans, is not certified by the state, but since he does only VA and is acceptable to VA, the state doesn't care. The state also doesn't care that the panel consistantly low-balls appraisals as they are for VA internal use only.

So, give up trying to get on the panel. Its a no-win situation, especially for a good appraiser.
 

Charlotte Dixon

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Delaware
Wow, sour grapes and whining seem to be the order of the day regarding V.A. Appraisers. :roll:

Damn, RStrahan, glad I'm not as "good" an appraiser as you! :lol:
 

Leon Stewart

Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
RStrahan:

That's the VA that most of us know about, and for it to be a political process, it dosen't necessarily mean that a political office holder was directly involved. A Political process is a process whereby Bureaucrats maintain a selection system that doesn't give everybody equal opportunity to the work that's available. I submitted an application about 30 years ago, and a year or so later I observed that they had added some appraisers that had just started in the business, so I new from then on what type of system they had. In this, as in other endeavers, you have to spend your time on things that are productive, otherwise you wont be able to pay the rent.

leon
 

H. Robert Murray III

Thread Starter
Freshman Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2002
Thanks for the response.
Every once in a while, like every few years, I have called and submitted a package of examples, letters of rec, etc; but to no avail, their panel is always few. I just figure, after 20 years in the business so far, one day I will catch them at the right moment when they neee another appraiser on the list.

Thanks again.
Robert
 
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