MReport April 2017

TheMReport — News and strategies for the evolving mortgage marketplace.

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28 | TH E M R EP O RT FEATURE allows lenders to set more realistic closing dates that won't disappoint borrowers. • • Add•new•vendors•now. In particularly busy markets, vendors should get more appraisers and/or AMCs now. It takes some preparation work to onboard new vendors but scaling up fee panel and AMC relationships now is easier than when the storm hits. Consider a hybrid approach that uses AMCs and appraisers interchangeably. • • Evaluate•the•existing•panel.•Lenders should make sure to have the best appraisers on their panels right now by running scorecards for each one. By knowing who performed best, lenders can prioritize vendors when placing orders to ensure the top vendors get the most work. • • Communicate•often.•Lenders must reach out to appraisers and/or AMCs often, even if it's just to say hi. Appraisers will devote more attention and better service to those with whom they're consistently communicating. • • Plan•with•vendors. Appraisers and AMCs know that not all markets are the same. Lenders should work with them ahead of time to strat - egize ways to handle the busy sea- son in particular markets. Consider reaching out to them before it gets busy, asking for their opinions of what went wrong last year and what needs to change this year to make sure there is less friction. • • Offer•higher•fees.•When fee panel appraisers are busy, paying them a little more can move a lender to the front of the line. Account for it when disclosing fees to the borrower. • • Make•sure•contracts•are•flexible.•If using AMCs, contracts should be structured in a way that allows the vendor to increase or decrease fees based on the market and specific areas, without renegotiating the entire contract. • • Staff•up. AMCs should hire staff appraisers in busy markets to help increase through- put during busy months to increase their capacity. Improving Appraisal Operations I n addition to vendor relationships, evalu- ating internal appraisal operations can also allow lenders to better leverage the busy season and booming mortgage markets. To make sure teams are ready for production spikes, consider these five tips. • • Get•the•right•technology.•Invest in an appraisal management system to help connect with appraisers and AMCs. When looking for the best solution, make sure it's integratable with any existing Loan Origination System (LOS). When the LOS syncs with the appraisal management system, the entire process is easier on staff members. It also reduces errors and saves time on every appraisal ordered. • • Use•a•single•dashboard. Even if ordering from appraisers directly, using AMCs, or ordering residential appraisals, reviews, or commercial appraisals, all communication should be logged in one central system. There are too many compliance risks and hassles when using multiple websites or systems for each vendor or product type. One system is ideal from an operations and efficiency standpoint, too. • • Provide•easier,•better•borrower•service.•The right technology provider can dramati- cally improve the borrower's experience and overall efficiency. First, considering handling borrower appraisal payments securely online, removing the burden and liability from internal loan officers. Once the appraisal report is complete, use tech - nology to automatically deliver a secure, compliant copy to the borrower and any other stakeholders with a branded web portal, emphasizing the organization's commitment to borrower information and security. • • Base•fees•on•data.•Figure appraisal fees based on real market fees to avoid wasted time and renegotiations after the appraisal fee has been disclosed to the borrower. If using AMCs, be sure to add the AMC fee on top of the appraisal fee. Set fees for each market, but make them competitive so they attract top-tier vendors. "SARA... play the last call with borrower #2127." Selene Ad_2.2917+9.1255_final_final 3/15/17 5:30 PM Page 1 "Behind every successful production team is an efficient, fully scaled appraisal operations team."

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