Today is the official start of a new policy at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, to only buy loans that were appraised under the Home Valuation Code of Conduct. The HVCC was the outgrowth of a lawsuit filed by New York Sate Attorney General Andrew Cuomo against Washington Mutual and was designed to “improve the reliability of home appraisals,” according to FHFA, Fannie and Freddie’s regulator.
“Yesterday, Thursday, appraisers may have had 50 or 60 clients that they could deal with, so if they were getting undue pressure from somebody they could just tell that client no, I'm not doing any more work for you,” says Jim Amorin, of the Appraisal Institute. “Today the number of players in the field have been drastically reduced to generally these appraisal management companies, so the pressure that's going to be brought to bear on appraisers we fear is going to be as strong if not stronger than it was before, the whole thing the code of conduct was trying to address.”
But the biggest issue is something Dana, a mortgage broker, cites in a blast to the RealtyCheck:
Based on Attorney General Cuomo’s website, the appraisal fraud in the mortgage industry was due to the practices used by some of the country’s largest banks pressuring appraisers to artificially inflate the value of homes.
Why is it that some of the largest banks in the country are allowed to have partial ownership in the Appraisal Management Companies ?? Isn’t this once again the fox watching the hen house??
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