What are the best appraisal management companies to work for? The obvious answer would be the ones that bring in work. But its not quite that simple, is it? Other factors would be whether or not the appraisal management companies are giving consistent work, if they are ethical and if they are paying you a fair cut.
Appraisal management companies, in general, have been stereo-typed as unethical and greedy. And while I can agree with this on some levels, as I am an appraiser myself, there has been a shift in the reliability and effectiveness of some of the older AMC’s and a definite change in the newer companies that are popping up all over the nation.
As appraisers have expressed their unhappiness and frustration at the big appraisal management companies, many of the the smaller companies have begun to change their policies. They are working toward getting qualified appraisers in the local market area to perform the appraisal, they are taking smaller commissions, they are not demanding 24 hour turn times, and they are giving consistent work to those appraisers that turn in quality reports.
So, how do you know which appraisal management companies are the best?
Unfortunately, they can be difficult to find. Talking to other appraisers is a great way to find out if they are reputable. Going to forums and discussing the appraisal management companies you are interested in. Appraisers are a wealth of information, but don’t discount an AMC just because you hear one bad account. More than likely, you will need to sign up with them yourself and see how you are personally treated. I have heard many stories of how an appraisal management company treated one person well and another person badly.
One bit of advice…be careful with some forums. Some are great and some are just a place where they can spout out all their woes about appraisal manangent companies. While I agree with a lot of what they say, they are not looking for solutions, they are looking for a place to vent. There are still thousands of appraisers who enjoy what they do for a living and are willing to share information.
A new shift that has recently started is the employment of appraisers by the largest AMCs. They have discovered that if they employ the appraisers that work for them, they can pay them a lot less money and, in return, they give the appraiser consistent work. The upside to this arrangement is that as an appraiser, you will always be kept busy. The downside is that most of these companies are paying only about $14 per hour. That comes out to less than $2500 per month, and it is the AMC that dictates how much time each appraisal should take.
This practice may change in the near future, just like everything else, so keep your ears open and keep up to date on current events.