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Short-cuts On Calculations/adjustments

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Alanroden

Freshman Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2003
I've got the WinTotal Demo and I'm toying with it...

1. On the Sales Comparison section of the URAR, do I have to input the Location (subdivision name) for the subject and each comparison, manually or by quick phrase, or will it magically grab the info from the mapping software and input it automatically into the form?

2. And on the Leasehold/Fee Simple blocks, can I arrange it to automically input Fee Simple, as a default, into the form and just change it as necessary or do I have to manually type it in each time? I know I can use quick phrases or clone old reports, but can I make certain fields defaut to an automatic entry?

3. On page one (1) of the URAR, will WinTotal automatically grab the Census Tract and Map Reference from the online sources or do I have to manually input this info?


4. Will ALL relevant property information move or copy over to any addendums or other forms that I might add later and does it matter when I add them?

5. How well does the Alamode/Marshall & Swift add-on work and how much time does it shave off your cost calcuations?

6. How effective is the E/O function - will it catch most thing that a reviewer would catch?

I'm trying to decide to buy or not to buy WinTotal and I'm wondering exactly how much easier WinTotal will make my formfilling life over ClickForms or Poloroid - how much time will it shave off my formfilling activity provided I have all the property and comp. info researched and at my fingertips and am ready to just TYPE...how much info does it actually grab from other parts of the form and from online sources
 

John Wilson

Junior Member
Joined
May 1, 2003
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Illinois
1. needs input

2. yes

3. auto

4. moves

5. Good, lots

6. yes, not everything

and, depends how much you want to pay..............
 

Mike Garrett RAA

Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Colorado
call the sales department at Alamode 1 800 ALAMODE and ask them all those questions. Have your credit card ready so when they answer the questions you can order it on the spot.

I use the E/O feature on every appraisal, it is very very helpful. There are so many wonder features don't even know how to use. If you want the best, order Athena. Of course there are other programs but its sorta like ....do you want a Cadillac or a Ford?
 

Alanroden

Freshman Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2003
Thanks for the responses...I didn't have to call Alamode...the tech support guy called me today...he said he read my post and thought he would call to answer the questions in person and to make sure I had the tech support phone number just in case I had any more questions.

Now that's service!

I had already signed up for the hands on training in Oklahoma City to preview, use and learn the product before I buy it...but I had some initial and somewhat stupid questions...I'm not used to a forms software that will actually do something for me besides allow me to enter data - I was a Formfill user.

And the Alamode guy said that if I buy the software within a week or so after the two day training class, that the cost would be reduced by at least the price of the class - around $250.

I also figure that with all the posts that indicate that there is a high rate of computer freezing, that I'd use it for a couple of days on their computers to see if it freezes up...I don't imagine that they use magic computers or operating systems that aren't as prone to freezing...so I'll get to see for myself if the system freezes up and how often.

But so far, the software and the service seems fantastic...

Again thanks for the replies and thanks to the 'Alamode Guy' for calling so quickly!
 

joeduncan

Sophomore Member
Joined
May 7, 2003
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
California
To answer some of your questions... for the census tract it will fill it in automatically for you but it gives you a slightly different tract number than county records, for example county records may say the census tract is 151.00 wintotal will fill it in as 00151.00 or something like that....... it does not fill in the map page but it does fill in the flood zone info if its incorporated.

If you have change forms or accidentaly do it on the wrong form which i seem to do a lot it will fill in automatically, i think it could do a better job in that department, but quicker than starting over.

the E&O works well... it makes sure you have everything filled in, tells you if your values and adjustment exceed a certaind percentage... a reviewer is probably still better.
 

LJFJR

Freshman Member
Joined
Jan 22, 2002
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
Rhode Island
I have used alamode since I started doing appraisals :D have tried others :angry: , always went back to alamode, have all the bells & whistles :p , makes my job easy. have to go ride my bike now B) , don't work to hard. bye.
 

Richard Carlsen

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
Michigan
Alan

Judy and I attended the weekend seminar in Cleveland last week. Finally got a chance to meet Dave face to face.

I've been using Total for nearly 10 years and I have to tell you, we learned things that we conservatively estimate will save us a minimum of 30 minutes per day. That does not sound like much but it works out to 125 hours per year saving of time. And 125 hours of extra time means I can do between 25 and 30 more appraisals. 25 to 30 appraisals @ say $250 per report works out to an additional $6250 to $7500. That is what technology can do for us.

Or I could just have more time to spend fishing. It's a close call.

I think you will benefit from the conference. A word of advice: play with the software as much as you can before you go. It will help you better understand where the the savings in time can be made.
 

Wally Jones

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 23, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Florida
Alan,

Just to add to the others' comments. I've used WinTotal for six years and been very happy. The seminar I attended, as Richard pointed out, was invaluable. Learned a lot.

You may have already learned this from your talk with the tech support guy from a la mode, but just to answer your #2 above. I made a new folder and called it "templates". I then opened a copy of each major form I use and filled in all the information that is usually common to all my reports (e.g., county, state, many of the blocks within the comp. sales grid-location, view, etc.). I named that "shell" report something like "URAR Template" or "FHA Template". When I begin a new report, I go to the "Templates" folder, highlight the appropriate report "shell" and click on "Clone" in the toolbar. This opens the Information Requester so I can fill in the data for my new report and when complete, it will open my new report with all of those items that I put in my template already filled in. This feature, plus the "quick comment" feature, saves a bunch of time.

Hope that wasn't too confusing, but just wanted you to know there is a way to avoid having to re-type a lot of info into each report.

Good luck.
 

Mike Garrett RAA

Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Colorado
Just found out there is a seminar in Denver on June 6 & 7 and would you believe....it's sold out! That's two years in a row I have missed it....darn it!

About census tract numbers. The complete number is something like this 1720.151.01. could be 8 or 9 digits. The first four are your community identifier. If you just use the four or five digit numbers like 151.01 it could be in any number of communities.
 
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