SOURCE: Appraisal Institute

Appraisal Institute

November 17, 2016 12:00 ET

Congress Hears Appraisal Institute's Ideas to Modernize Regulation

CHICAGO, IL--(Marketwired - November 17, 2016) - The Appraisal Institute told a Congressional hearing Wednesday there is a "better, less-complicated approach" that would modernize the U.S. appraisal regulatory structure by improving quality, reducing costs and addressing fundamental concerns that drive appraisers from the profession.

In Capitol Hill testimony before a subcommittee of the House Financial Services Committee, the Appraisal Institute suggested that Congress realign the appraisal regulatory structure with those of other industries in the real estate and mortgage industries. As the nation's largest professional association of real estate appraisers, the Appraisal Institute recommended using as a model the National Mortgage Licensing System cooperative among state agencies.

"Appraisers are being choked by rules and regulations in nearly every facet of their business," Bill Garber, Appraisal Institute director of government and external relations, told the Housing and Insurance Subcommittee in written testimony. "Appraisers' professional lives have become extremely complicated, more expensive and less productive due to a dated and archaic regulatory structure. As a result, consumers suffer from increased turnaround time, delays in loans and potential higher costs."

Noting that the federal regulatory structure for real estate appraisal essentially has been untouched since 1989, the Appraisal Institute's written testimony said regulation is "overwhelming" appraisers and proving to be "counter-productive" for the profession and for users of appraisal services.

"Real estate appraisers face a 'layering effect' of rules and regulations that creates a disincentive for potential entry into the profession, while also diminishing the profession's profitability," the Appraisal Institute said in its written testimony.

As examples of these rules, the Appraisal Institute cited background checks with no federal mandate or efficient processing system, and unappealing supervisor-appraiser and trainee-appraiser requirements, among others.

"Presently, real estate appraisers pay for the operation and maintenance of the regulatory structure in a variety of ways, including imposing license renewal fees, course requirements, and mandates to purchase rules and regulations. After almost 27 years, it is time to make the appraisal regulatory structure and process more efficient and responsive to the needs of practitioners and consumers," Garber told the subcommittee at the hearing.

The subcommittee's hearing on "Modernizing Appraisals: A Regulatory Review and the Future of the Industry" took place in Room 2128 of the Rayburn House Office Building. Representatives of the Appraisal Subcommittee, The Appraisal Foundation, Clearbox, the National Association of Home Builders and Mountain State Justice, Inc., also were scheduled to testify at the hearing.

Read the Appraisal Institute's testimony here.

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The Appraisal Institute is a global professional association of real estate appraisers, with nearly 20,000 professionals in almost 60 countries throughout the world. Its mission is to advance professionalism and ethics, global standards, methodologies, and practices through the professional development of property economics worldwide. Organized in 1932, the Appraisal Institute advocates equal opportunity and nondiscrimination in the appraisal profession and conducts its activities in accordance with applicable federal, state and local laws. Individuals of the Appraisal Institute benefit from an array of professional education and advocacy programs, and may hold the prestigious MAI, SRPA, SRA, AI-GRS and AI-RRS designations. Learn more at www.appraisalinstitute.org.

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