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We're Growing ! (just A Rant)

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Mary Caffey

Sophomore Member
Joined
Feb 22, 2002
:eek:

Just a Rant ....

The 5000 person town we serve has just approved a Lowes, Home Depot, Walgreens, Eckerds and Red Lobster- for construction within the next 12 months.

The refis are all that the title companies are handling right now which gives us NO comps......

We are already getting 8 appraisals a week and some are crap---- I am wanting to gear up for the new construction homes that are BOUND to start here---

question?
1. how do YOU break the news to your lender that 10 day turn time is the soonest you can get to some of these AND
2. that house appraisal has a tax assessment for $7800 . 00 (seventy eight hundred) is NOT on your schedule.......due of course to lack of comps......

I feel guilty about not being able to give 24-48 hr turn times and I am about to lose my mind.......... but it's like a damn clues game in trying to find the legal, the comps, the houses, etc. with the little information the LO provides....
 

wyecoyote

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Gvmt Agency, FNMA, HUD, VA etc.
State
Washington
I used to work from a company that would require a trio (county records, legal and plat map) report on every subject property prior to starting the order. The reason being just like you described the county information was not online and their was no data providers for the counties that we covered. You may want to do this unless you are just ranting about the comps. Then think of it this way if you are having the same difficulty other appraisers are so turn times are going to be the same. So just tell them point blank due to the hard data searches at county courthouse turn times in xyz county are 10 days.

Ryan
 

Tom Barclay

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 7, 2002
Professional Status
Retired Appraiser
State
Oregon
It's tough, but you will get used to the lack of stress when every order is not a rush. The fact that you provided that kind of service in the past has gotten you in a jam. It is much easier to do this job when you have the time to schedule your work instead of letting the work schedule you.

FYI, I am now booking inspections for the middle of June, and I just moved my office 173 miles, and nobody really knows I'm here yet. All you can do is develop a routine, and a schedule; then just do your best to keep to them. Good luck.
 

Mike Simpson

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 30, 2002
24-48 hours??? Seriously???

If I'm going to give someone that kind of turn time in todays low interest rate environment (high volume of orders) I'm going to charge them through the nose--rush fee baby, rush fee!

In my geographical area appraisers are 2-3 weeks out. I tell the clients not willing to pay higher rates (AMC's-for years now), or those difficult to work with, "I'm sorry, we're so busy right now we're not accepting anymore orders, we're trying to keep our clients happy." I've never been questioned, or dropped from an approved list.

Right now's the time to pick up new clients (before the rates go back up--someday), and now's not the time to be discounting fees or doing favors.

You've got to make hay while the sun is shining--$$$.

-Mike
 

jim farrelly

Sophomore Member
Joined
May 8, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Illinois
mike,

i agree and disagree. now is not the time to cut/discount fees. however, a few well chosen favors may be remembered when rates start to climb.

this thread and others like it make me appreciate being in a huge metro area with more comps than i'd ever know what to do with. u folks in those rural and less populated areas, my hat's off to u. in fact, ill have several cold one's tonite in your memory.
 

Tim Hicks (Texas)

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Texas
If you are over two weeks out, you should hire a trainee or another appraiser. Or work harder. That is the biggest complaint about appraisers (besides value). The lenders are trying to cut down the time it takes to close a loan. Every we take to long to return an appraisal it is another nail in our coffins. Why do you think they want AVM's? Because they are quicker. I truly believe our best defense against AVM's is to provide superior products as quickly as possible. Too many appraisers incorrectly identify their "recent power" of telling lenders they have to wait with the fact that it would not be tolerated if the market slowed. Everybody is a business genius when there is an appraisal boom and too many think it is their business prowess. Seriously, folks, if you take longer than two weeks to turn an appraisal, you need to examine your business. I don't blame any lender who shops for a quicker appraiser. Why are so few hiring trainees if they are this backed up? Greed? I know when I shop for anything, I shop where I can get the best service the quickest. Why should our profession be any different?

Sorry, that is just my opinion.

Never more than two weeks out in 12 years. I may work night and day and have no life, but that is my business mission.
 

Ghost Rider

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 27, 2003
Professional Status
Banking/Mortgage Industry
State
Connecticut
I have to agree with Tim......I get yelled at by my fiancee all the time for working too much, and there have been times when I have been very worried about working too much, but in order to take care of my clients, and to keep my business afloat, well, it is my name on the report, both on the signature line, and on the top of the report where the company name goes. I was VERY careful when I left the office I started out on to leave on good terms, and when I left, I had a BUNCH of the old clients calling me within 3 weeks because no one at the office was staying on top of things. I learned my lesson quickly.

As far as doing favors, or discounting fees, well, we are all entitled to our opinions on this. For me, I make sure to take extra special care of my clients. My fees for a URAR are a base of $300 - rush service available for a 50% surcharge - and I make sure if I promise a turn time, they get it, even if I work 18 hours a day. For "preferred" clients, I do give discounts based on volume and payment terms. If they are willing to order 15+ appraisals a month, and pay ALL invoices within 15 days, I'll cut 10% off the invoice totals. I consider it a business expense.

The problem I am having is, the clients that I have almost like me too much. If I get a call checking fee and turn time, I am too honest. I don't really care for those appraisers who just quote a 4 week turn time just to slow things down. As long as this gravy train we are on keeps going, I'mm gonna be happy, and when it gets quiet, I'm still gonna be happy, because I took care of my clients through the crazy time, and it will be remembered. When it gets quiet, and there isn't enough work for all the appraisers to go around, are they going to remember the appraiser who told them they could turn it in a week, but got the report in 3 weeks instead?? I don't think so......how about those appraisers who thought it was too busy, so they raised fees from $300 to $350, just to slow things down, or to take advantage of the need of the lenders?? I doubt it.

My point is this.......the FIRST rule of any business is Customer Service, and that is no different in this business.......I'm not saying you have to be a number hitter, but a courtesy phone call when there are value issues isn't a bad thing. Taking that extra 20 minutes to re-read the appraisal BEFORE sending it out is a very good idea (I've seen too many appraisals that I am reviewing that no one proofed that could be good if they bothered to read the damn things) Don't try to screw them for every penny just because you can do it......

It's funny, I was at a casino the other day, playing a little roulette, trying to relax a little, and I started talking to a guy, we were both doing very well, and the question of what we did for a living came up......Turned out he was an appraiser also, about 30 minutes fom where I live. We'd never really met eachother, but knew eachother by name......and we got into a bit of a heated debate when I mentioned I did discount fees for very goood clients.....He practically jumped down my throat with the "Your making it hard for the rest of us to make a living doing things like that" line.....I looked at him as I cashed out (realizing it was time to find a new table to play at) and said "but unlike gambling here, business isn't a team sport" and left.......Maybe I'm wrong with that opinion, but as long as I am working to make a living, I'll do whatever it takes to make sure I can keep paying my mortgage, and keep food on my table. If that means I do things other appraisers don't like from a business standpoint, so be it.

Don't hate me because I take better care of my clients than you do with yours. Hate me when they stop calling you, and start calling me
 

wyecoyote

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Gvmt Agency, FNMA, HUD, VA etc.
State
Washington
Just some things.

Tim,

Over two weeks out is pretty much the norm here right now. The market ebbs and flows so hiring a trainiee or another appraiser is not capable. Some times we are more than two weeks out then another time we may only be a week out. The orders come and go with our clients needs. We work with a couple of banks that order all their appraisals in the 1st week of the month then nothing the last week of the month. All that they ask is that the orders are completed by the last week of the month so they can close the loans. This does create a problem when in the begining of the month the head spins cause the fax machine and the email orders seem not to stop. Then at the last week of the month we constantly worry that the fax machine is broken or the email is down. This is how our clients like it and that is their choice not ours. Others may call us at the begining of the month and want our turn times when we say 2 to 3 weeks for an inspection they don't like that. But then again on the last week of the month when we could see it in a couple of days no one calls. Go figure.

MH,

Discounting fees are your choice as a buisiness. I personally don't belive in it because the appraisal fee is passed onto the homeowner. Every one worries to much about the appraisal fee in the industry like it is such a big deal what about the LO commision is the LO really discounting their commision by a tenth of a point just to beat out the competion or lowering the discount rate? But then again it is your choice as an appraiser and business owner. Yes sooner or later things will slow down and every appraiser out there will be fighting for that one appraisal. When that time comes we will all have to cross that bridge. Unless those of us work at getting more REO appraisals and get inline with those clients at this time.

Ryan
 

Restrain

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 22, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Florida
I run 1-2 weeks and tell the client up front where we're at. However, they want me to do the work, so I salute and take their money. We did 20 in 4 days this week and are behind, but the work keeps coming in. However, I would like to get some sleep. Gotta go do 4 tomorrow. Saturday - yeech!

Roger
 
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