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The nation’s foremost valuation profession authority, The Appraisal Foundation (TAF) has announced that Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) guidance will soon be integrated into software programs of three partner companies.
Appraisal software providers, ACI, Bradford Technologies and Centric Technology Solutions will release new software that allow access to USPAP and other guidance as a real property appraiser resource. These particular companies were chosen for the initial launch because of their commitment to provide appraisers with robust tools to perform quality appraisals through their software. The new programs will help ensure USPAP compliance, save appraisers time and benefit lenders.
Foundation president, David S. Bunton, said regarding the new initiative, “This announcement ushers in a new day for the Foundation and appraisal technology. Appraisal professionals will now have USPAP and the Foundation’s related guidance at their fingertips for reference during every step of the process. Digitizing USPAP and including it in the appraiser’s toolset is the best way to ensure compliance and ultimately build public trust in the work of appraisers.”
ACI will incorporate USPAP and related guidance into a new web-based appraisal management platform called ACI Sky™, which allows for full report creation with tools for data collection, review, sketching, MISMO® XML delivery, flood mapping and location.
Bradford Technologies’ partnership with the Appraisal Foundation allows it to expand on moving the appraisal profession, particularly residential appraisers, away from tedious form-filling and more towards its appraisal analytics product, Redstone software.
Centric Technology Solutions’ CentricCVP™ (Collateral Valuation Platform), the only software that allows transparency and control throughout the entire appraisal process, will have USPAP and related guidance integrated by the end of 2015.
Not all providers of appraisal management software are partnering with TAF. Leading real estate technology software provider, A la mode Inc., is notably absent from this initiative. The company’s chairman, Dave Biggers, said they chose to opt out “after seeing the details of the Appraisal Foundation proposal”.
Biggers adds, “Unfortunately, we weren’t allowed to even see the details until we signed a non-disclosure agreement, which even forbid us from telling you that the AF proposal even existed. Now that the AF has gone public, we can at least confirm that their initiative exists, and that we opted out for good reason. However, that non-disclosure agreement still prevents us from telling you about the many details in the AF’s proposal which caused us to choose not to even take the first steps of participation, and we strongly believe that the devil is always in the details.”
Biggers believes that appraisers have had “enough meddling in exactly what workflow they want to follow in their daily forms data entry and that they will not willingly pay for development of features which impede their ability to get reports rapidly out the door. As evidence of this, we can say unequivocally that even though we talk to thousands of appraisers every day, we’ve never had appraisers ask for what the AF’s proposal demands. We seriously doubt most appraisers wish that there was a USPAP-centric overlord dominating their interaction with their software. Most appraisers seem to believe they understand USPAP sufficiently to do their jobs in full compliance, and what they really seem to want is for their software vendors to focus on making their daily tasks faster, more efficient, more connected, and more logical. We don’t believe the AF’s proposed methods meet those criteria.”
Biggers then points to a possible partnership in the future, “If the situation changes, we might consider joining in the AF’s initiative. But for now, we believe there are very few benefits but many downsides to doing so — which, as we said, we’re not allowed to tell you.”
Valuation Review. TAF adds standards, guidance to appraisal software