Appraiser Independence Code of Conduct

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Why would I use a regional AMC you ask? Brubaker and Associates is a regional AMC. The best real estate knowledge is based on local information analyzed by local professional participants. Brubaker and Associates is not, nor will it ever claim to be, a national appraisal management company. We are local appraisers, living and working in what is commonly referred to as the Texas Triangle area. This area encompasses the Houston, Austin, San Antonio and Dallas-Fort worth market areas. Our appraisers have intimate knowledge of the market factors affecting the local housing market on a daily basis.

When changes occur in the local housing market, our appraisers know it. They feel it right down to their bones. It affects us personally, our families and our neighbors. There is no escaping it. There is no substitute for this kind of market knowledge. We don’t read it in the paper. Our appraisers work here and live here.

Every one of our appraisal reports is individually reviewed by local, certified appraisers.  Our reviewers are all SRA designated appraisers, the highest residential designation awarded by the Appraisal Institute. I am unaware of any other AMC providing this level of quality control. Most AMC’s feed their appraisals through some sort of automated review software program designed to catch errors that are applicable to Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac guidelines. There is not a computer program yet written that competes with the sharp mind of a local, knowledgeable professional appraiser. Our appraisal reviewers know the Fannie/Freddie guidelines and the Texas market area.

But I don’t want to have a million AMC’s on my list of approved AMC’s. That’s a good point. I understand wanting to reduce paperwork and oversight. But, did you know that Harris County Texas (Houston is the county seat) is the third largest county in the country. If Harris County were a state, our economic base would be larger than that of twenty-four states. That’s almost half the states in the whole country. That doesn’t even include the other nine counties that make up the greater Houston market area. According to the 2010 census the Houston region would be larger than 32 states and the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex would be larger than 34 states. An area that large can easily support its own AMC.

Our systems provide the separation that is required by HR 4173 and the Appraiser Independence Regulations, while still providing the transaction tracking desired by everyone involved. Better yet, the notification level of the tracking system is customizable by the customer. You can be notified at the completion of every step of the appraisal process. We can notify you of the appraiser accepting the assignment, the appraiser placing a call to the contact person, the date of the appointment, after the property inspection, etc, etc. Or you may simply want to know when the customer was contacted and when the appraisal report is complete and being delivered to you. It’s your choice.

Need some special hand holding? Your borrower going to Europe tomorrow and you really need the property inspected by the appraiser today? Appraiser Independence doesn’t prohibit that kind of communication. Nor does our appraisal management system. Tell us about your needs. We’ll take care of it for you. Appraiser Independence Regulations do not relieve us of our responsibility to provide quality customer service and quality appraisal products.

Appraiser Independence does not relieve the lender of their responsibility to provide a quality appraisal product. In fact the Fannie Mae Selling Guide states: A lender must not assume – simply based on the fact that an appraiser is state-licensed or state-certified – that the appraiser is qualified and knowledgeable about a market area, or is aware of the appropriate market data sources for the area and will be able to obtain access to them. If an appraiser is not knowledgeable about a particular location, is not experienced in appraising a particular type of property, or is not familiar with (or does not have access to) the appropriate data sources, a lender should not give the appraiser assignments in that market area or for that particular type of property.” (Quoted from the Fannie Mae Selling Guide)

If you are relinquishing the control of your appraiser selection to a national AMC, how certain are you of that appraiser’s market knowledge and skill set? Each appraisal assignment delivered to Brubaker and Associates, Inc. will be performed by an appraiser that is both qualified to appraise the property type and is knowledgeable about the market area and has all the sources available for that market area. In addition, that appraisal report will be reviewed by an SRA designated appraiser that is also both qualified and knowledgeable. That is our guarantee to you.

How about price? Surely with all this, the cost has to be higher than the national AMC’s? Not all. Because we are smaller and more tightly focused, we are very efficient. Our prices are generally better than those required by the national AMC’s.

What is the downside of adding Brubaker and Associates to your list of approved AMC’s? You have to add us to your list. I’m sure there is some work involved.

What is the upside? The upside is Brubaker and Associates, Inc. is an already very highly regarded and well respected name in the Texas Triangle area. Having a local and well regarded pool of appraisers in your bag of tools can’t hurt your sales and marketing department. Ask your marketing representatives. See what they think.

How big is the area covered by Brubaker and Associates, Inc.? See Our Service Area.

Need help with the quality control testing required by HR 4173? We can help with that also. But, only in the Texas Triangle area..

Want to get started or have questions? Please feel free to contact us through this website, or by calling us directly at 713.464.4666. Speak with our president, Mike Brubaker or our Marketing Director, Mary Ann Regan.



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Mike Brubaker