The continuation of placing Profits Before People, as best exhibited by the National Association of Mortgage Field Services (NAMFS), is finally beginning to catch up with the Mortgage Field Services Industry. HousingWire, a tried and true mouthpiece for the Industry, recently bumped heads with a fairly powerful segment, Appraisers. Experiencing the same downward mobility which Minority Females and Labor are, Industry Appraisers finally took aim at the NAMFS type mentality which has sidelined their issues for nearly half a decade now. And you know what? The arguments in which Jonathan Miller puts forth in the HousingWire article are nearly identical to those currently experienced by Minority Females and Labor within the Industry.
The heart of the argument is twofold in that first, Vampire Squid originators, not dissimilar to the National Order Mills, have determined that the Appraiser should exist only to ratify valuations in which the seller, purchaser, and originator issue to they. As the Industry looks at Minority Females and Labor, the belief is the same: Minority Females and Labor exist only as a source of revenue vis-a-vis involuntary servitude and new line item Chargeback Schemes to bolster the bottom line.
Miller frames this mentality in what appears to be identical in the Mortgage Field Services Industry,
To do that, AMCs take half of the market rate appraisal fee to manage us. This administrative fee is earned by confirming we had a license, forcing us to interact daily with 19-year olds — chewing gum checking on the status of their appraisal — subjecting us to expanding scope creep to validate their existence and run analytics on our appraisal opinions to keep us accurate. This relationship is done all in the name of compliance even though there is no regulation requiring banks to use AMCs. And remember that litigation of cases involving AMCs such as eAppraiseIT showed collusion on a much larger scale.
AMCs pushed the idea that a 50% fee reduction net to the appraiser would not have any impact on quality. Of course, if that were true, wages across all industries in the U.S. would be halved almost immediately. And best of all, the 50% pay cut to appraisers would be hidden from the consumer to reduce their “confusion” as advocated by REVAA, the AMC trade group. The AMC industry doesn’t want the public to know that valuation expertise in the mortgage lending process is given the same weight as administrative bureaucracy. The 50% appraiser pay cut fee effectively helped banks comply with post-financial crisis regulations at no cost, placing all their savings on the backs of the lone wolves who can’t afford public relations firms.
But over time, something interesting happened. AMCs started to run out of appraisers willing to work for 50% less than the market rate. Good appraisers responded to the pay cut by moving on to other clients who would pay them a fair fee for their valuation expertise. This problem became greatly exaggerated as mortgage rates fell and appraisal refinance assignments surged. Now the “appraiser shortage” narrative became a full-fledged crisis to the AMC industry. AMCs pressed even harder with their “appraiser shortage” narrative that never existed as described. They portrayed us lone wolves as greedy and self-serving, just for shifting to clients who pay a fair wage.
What we are hearing from the Appraisers is almost identical to that which we are hearing in the Mortgage Field Services Industry. And when we look at the National Association of Mortgage Field Services (NAMFS) and how their Executive Director, Eric Miller’s salary consumes over SEVENTY FIVE PERCENT of all NAMFS Member dues at over $120,240 per year, it is impossible to escape the fact that change will come or eventually there will be a deficiency with respect to qualified Field Service Technicians willing to work.