Tuesday, March 25, 2008

New idea for Reality Game Show

Come.......on.........DOWN!!!!!!! And "ABUSE THE APPRAI$ER!!

The game goes something like this..........A lender and/or property owner show up and state how totally stupid and insane the appraiser is that recently completed an appraisal for them. (Can you believe that they only think my house is worth THIS much??!!???) They present photos, video tape, whatever to make their case that the property is worth much more.

And then, they bring out the poor brow-beaten appraiser, who is bashed with verbal comments, while he presents his findings and supports his opinion of value.

At the end, the audience casts their vote for who they think is correct. If the lender/property owner team wins, they get some big prize. If the appraiser wins.........well, they get a pat on the back, as federal regulations prohibit an appraiser from collecting any fee related to the amount of the final opinion of value. (For clarification on that, appraisers get paid an established fee that can not be based upon the amount of the final opinion of value. This is crucially important, as a commission-based payment system could influence an appraiser to "inflate" a value for their own gain. Most people don't think about it.......)

So what do you think? Is this show going to make me million$$$???

Yeah.........I don't think so either, but it is the reality of life as an appraiser in a floundering economy. Thousands of appraisers across the nation are taking daily "verbal-beatings" for correctly reporting property values which are thousands of dollars below the value that property owners need to sell their homes, refinance their homes, or in the worst-case scenarios, retain their homes. Foreclosures are still climbing, so the pressure continues to mount. Some clients are stressed to the point that they don't want to order a costly appraisal without a "guarantee" that a loan will result, but it is unethical (and against federal regulations) for an appraiser to provide any sort of opinion of value without performing the time-consuming task of actually appraising a property. I suppose an appraiser CAN perform that process for free, but that is a pretty lousy business practice.

Honestly......I get tired of the "up-front" requests for value before I have a chance to do my job, but I don't really mind the verbal beatings that sometimes come after the job is complete. When I've done my analysis correctly, its pretty easy to support my opinion of value with factual data. Unrealistic expectations are not my problem. Providing an accurate opinion of value IS my problem.

Ahhh..........its so much fun being ethical sometimes. Of course, if there had been more ethical lenders/brokers/realtors/appraisers/etc., perhaps so many property owners wouldn't be in financial trouble to begin with? And the beat goes on.........

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