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An In-House Panel of Appraisers or AMC — Which is Best for your Organization?

Pro Teck

Choosing between an in-house appraisal management system or an AMC is an age-old debate for lenders of all types and sizes. In today’s competitive market, banks and credit unions know they have to quickly adapt to survive and thrive. For those that are weighing their options of an in-house panel of appraisers vs. an AMC, it helps to understand what each brings to the table.

National AMCs compete for business from a large and diverse group of lenders, servicers, investors and GSEs. This broad experience results in deep regulatory expertise (both state and federal), economies of scale and constant competitive innovation. Want to know the right questions to ask when evaluating an AMC? Download our guide.

An in-house panel of appraisers, on the other hand, centralizes operations and helps lenders produce high-quality appraisal reports within their own office. Using the latest valuation platform technology, lenders are able to efficiently manage all aspects of an appraisal while ensuring effective collaboration between the lender, appraiser and customer.

So, how do you know which option is right for you? Here is a quick guide to help you understand the differences between an in-house panel of appraisers vs. an AMC.

What to Look for When Debating a Panel of Appraisers vs. an AMC

  1. Comprehensive Compliance Oversight
     
    A national AMC’s expertise is dependent on being knowledgeable and compliant with all state and federal regulatory concerns – from passed laws to proposed changes in the committee stage. It takes dedicated resources to track these changes to stay compliant and ready for future change.
     
    The risk traditionally associated with in-house panels is that sometimes there are not enough resources to effectively track, plan and execute on all of the regulatory changes mandated at the state and federal level. However, if an in-house team uses current appraisal software platforms that are always updated with the latest regulations, in-house teams have the same resources at their disposal as a national AMC.
     
    National AMCs and high-quality, in-house appraisers typically offer expertise from a seasoned chief compliance officer who has their finger on the pulse of the changing regulatory environment within the valuation industry, both at the state and federal level.

  2. Fine-Tuned Quality Control (QC) Processes
     
    Both AMCs and in-house teams should aim to deliver quality one-touch appraisals. It’s in their best interest to focus on fine-tuning their quality control process and investing in the technology, data and analytics necessary for an efficient, accurate and compliant appraisal service.
     
    An in-house panel of appraisers will be dedicated to creating a thorough QC process and can turn to their years of experience or their trusted evaluation platform QC processes. AMCs will use the combined learnings of all their clients – from small regional to large national players – to create a “best of breed” QC process.
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  4. Dedicated to Responsiveness
     
    AMCs and in-house appraisers are built around responsiveness. Without it, they will lose business to competitors who can offer better service. An experienced team in either setup will have dedicated resources on your account, capable of chasing down information on an appraisal, helping the appraiser with any questions and keeping you updated on the status of the appraisal.
     
    No matter which option you choose, make sure you have a dedicated contact who will understand your unique needs, will be focused on your account and will know what’s in your pipeline — thereby allowing you to maintain continuity throughout an ever-changing industry.
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  6. Adheres to Top-Notch Technology
     
    Any lender that wants to move operations in house must be able to invest in the technology needed to satisfy a quality appraisal process. An AMC often already possesses an all-in-one appraisal platform that ensures a compliant, efficient and transparent appraisal process.

All of the above doesn’t mean a thing if an AMC doesn’t have coverage in your area and/or won’t recruit to satisfy your needs. Make sure they do by asking to review their coverage, capacity and appraiser recruiting and onboarding processes.

Contact us today to learn more about Pro Teck’s services – both our Valuation Intelligence platform, an AMC appraisal platform that is among the most efficient and effective in the industry today; and VI Direct, our SaaS offering for those who prefer an all-in-one in-house valuation solution.

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