Lately there have been more complaints about appraisals. Not only are late appraisals delaying closings but some appraisers are charging “expedition fees” to get appraisals done in time. Typically, the fee ranges from $200 to about $500. This feels like extortion to buyers and upsets Realtors who see such fees as unethical.
The National Association of REALTORS is aware that the number of appraisers has decreased in the past few years. Since the recession state and federal appraisal regulations have increased, as have educational requirements. NAR held an Appraisal Summit this summer focused on appraiser job satisfaction and industry growth in the context of today’s regulatory structure. NAR is focused on educating its members about the appraisal system that is currently in place but will also influence policy areas where the organization sees opportunities for improvement.
NAR policy analyst Sehar Siddiqi was surprised to learn of the expedition fees. She is checking to find out if this is a common trend across the country or simply a Colorado phenomenon. Some states require appraisals to occur within a specific timeframe; could that solve our problem in Colorado?
In the meantime, the Colorado Association of REALTORS has had its share of complaints about the issue. CAR isn’t sure yet how to deal with the appraiser problem. However, it will be the focus of a strategic think tank session at the fall conference on Sept. 22 at 8 am.
You can help by providing relevant details on transactions in which you’ve been involved that have been impacted by appraisal issues. Note: According to the Division of Real Estate, “An appraiser’s fees and schedule are not regulated. Fees are generally determined by the market (supply and demand for appraiser’s services) and the complexity of the assignment. The only recourse for a consumer is to “check with the lender or Appraisal Management Company to see if they have a Dispute Resolution Process, or seek legal advice.”