Fed Announces Interim Rules for Appraisers

November 2010Newsletters In the Zone

On October 18, 2010, the Federal Reserve Board announced an interim final rule to ensure real estate appraisers are free to use their independent professional judgment in assigning home values without influence or pressure from those with interests in the transactions. The rule also seeks to ensure that appraisers receive customary and reasonable payments for their services.

The interim final rule includes several provisions that protect the integrity of the appraisal process when a consumer's home is securing the loan. The interim final rule:

  • Prohibits coercion and other similar actions designed to cause appraisers to base the appraised value of properties on factors other than their independent judgment;
  • Prohibits appraisers and appraisal management companies hired by lenders from having financial or other interests in the properties or the credit transactions;
  • Prohibits creditors from extending credit based on appraisals if they know beforehand of violations involving appraiser coercion or conflicts of interest, unless the creditors determine the values of the properties are not materially misstated;
  • Requires creditors or settlement service providers with information about appraiser misconduct to file reports with the appropriate state licensing authorities; and
  • Requires the payment of reasonable and customary compensation to appraisers who are not employees of the creditors or the appraisal management companies hired by the creditors.

The interim final rule is required by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. Compliance will be mandatory on April 1, 2011. Public comments are due 60 days after the interim final rule is published in the Federal Register, which is expected soon.

For more information, please contact Robert W. Gundlach, Jr. at 215.918.3636 or [email protected]