Starting last week, we kick off our month-long series sharing the top reasons why your appraisal team is stretched too thin (and what you can do about it). In case you missed it, we already highlighted the first sign where they might be falling behind due to inadequate appraiser licenses. This week we’ll discuss how appraisal turn times can impact your team and put them in a bind. Why are your appraisal turn times short one week and dragging on the next? Ultimately appraisal reports take time to turn around — and with fewer appraisers to go around, they’re taking longer than ever.
If you’ve noticed longer turn-times, your lenders will get frustrated. If your appraisal turn times are too short and appraisers may be skimping on the necessary accuracy to provide clients with high-quality reports. If your turn-times are getting difficult to predict, it’s a clear sign that your staff doesn’t have the level of experience or confidence that they should.
The trick is to shorten your turn-time without sacrificing quality — but how?
Take a note from the Boy Scouts and Be Prepared. Planning ahead is key to having a strong idea of a project’s appraisal fees and turn-time. It’ll result in a smoother appraisal process and a happier lender that isn’t met with shifting deadlines.
Tip 1: Get All Your Papers In Place
Ensure all parties have the necessary documents so that appraisers can start as soon as the order is placed. Make note of any property complexities that may draw out the appraisal process so that appraisers can address them before they severely affecting the turn-time.
Tip 2: Hit The Streets
The first step to preparing is research, research, research. Talk to locals to gain a richer understanding of the market and comparable properties and any known seasonal effects on typical turn-times. This is especially true for rural areas, where properties comparable in size and location may not be readily available. The more aware you are of the market, the more accommodating your staff will be to local clients.
Tip 3: Nail Down a Process and Stick to it
With a consistent process in place, appraisers will be less likely to run into unforeseen delays — and be more supported to handle setbacks smoothly when delays do arise. Sticking to a process promotes consistency, decreases miscommunications, and increases the likelihood of meeting quick turn-times.
Tip 4: Admit When You Need Help
Between crafting spreadsheets, inspecting real estate, and researching the local market, the appraisal process can be a timely one. Even the most qualified appraisers can easily get bogged down and stretched too thin.
When appraisers are working against the clock to turn in reports on time and avoid higher fees, mistakes are going to be made. The right process, and the right AMC to guide it will help fill in the gaps so that appraisers will be turning in quality reports faster and you can meet deadlines.
If your appraisers are skeptical about turning to certain AMCs for guidance… We get it. MountainSeed is comprised of appraisers with over 30 years of experience, so our appraisers have experienced firsthand the frustrations that lenders experience. To ensure you’re getting the lowest cost with the highest quality, MountainSeed bids out appraisals.
The closer you stick to an established process, the more predictable your appraisal reviews will be — and, ultimately, the better customer service you’ll be able to provide. This will lead to a better banking business that customers will feel comfortable turning to time and time again.
Think your appraisal panel has what it takes? View our latest benchmark report to compare how you stack up. If you’re frustrated with the comparison, it may be time to hire a new AMC or offload some internal work to a new partner.
Want access to all 6 signs that might be stretching your team to the brink?
Download your free copy of our ebook today to read what might be brewing behind the scenes at your financial institution. If you’d like to learn first-hand how we could help you to improve your appraisal process, reach out today. We’re ready when you are.