Honesty and Integrity: Towne AppraisalsAppraising is, by and large, a long term career. Requirements to become a licensed appraiser have increased more than ever in the past. So it goes without question these days that real estate appraisal can unquestionably be called a profession rather than a trade. As with any profession we are bound by ethical considerations.
The appraiser's chief obligation is to their client. Typically, in residential practice, the lender (or an agent of the lender) places the order to the appraiser, becoming the appraiser's client. Consequently, appraisers are privy to a lot of data, and like an attorney, can only discuss many of these matters with their client. As a homeowner, if you desire a copy of the appraisal document, you generally have to obtain it via your lender instead of the appraiser.
Appraisers can regularly have fiduciary obligations to third parties, including homeowners, sellers and buyers, or others. Normally the third parties are clearly defined in the appraisal report. An appraiser's fiduciary role is limited to those third parties who the appraiser is aware of, based on the scope of work or other written parameters of the job.
There are also ethical standards that have nothing to do with clients and others. For example, appraisers must store their work files for a minimum of five years - at Towne Appraisals you can rest assured that we stick to that rule.
When busy with an appraisal, we follow the highest ethical standards possible. Doing orders where our fee is dependent on our value conclusion is never an option. That is, we are not able to agree to do an appraisal report and collect the fee only if the loan closes. There's an obvious conflict of interest if an appraiser can report an unsubstantiated value with the reward of getting paid more money!
Finally, the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice clearly describes a violation in ethics as the acceptance of an assignment that is contingent on "the reporting of a pre-determined result (e.g., opinion of value)", "a direction in assignment results that favors the cause of the client", or "the amount of a value opinion" as well as other situations. We follow these rules to the letter which means you can be confident we are going above and beyond to objectively determine the home or property value.
When you engage Towne Appraisals, we'll make sure you're getting the professional service you deserve along with the high ethical standards we're known for.
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