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Benjamin K. Olson quoted in American Banker article, “In reg relief era, appraisers become endangered species”

American Banker

Benjamin K. Olson

Benjamin K. Olson was quoted on December 17, 2018 in an American Banker article, “In reg relief era, appraisers become endangered species,” which discussed a recent proposal that would allow lenders to skip outside appraisals for residential mortgage transactions. The article stated, “The Federal Reserve, Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. and Office of the Comptroller of the Currency released a proposal last month to raise the threshold for residential real estate transactions that require an appraisal from $250,000 to $400,000. Lenders would still be required to obtain an evaluation for sales under the $400,000 limit, which the agencies say would ‘reduce burden in a manner that is consistent with federal public policy interests.’ But appraisers are raising concern that the proposal would not only hurt their business, but also leave consumers with a less viable method for verifying home values. Evaluations don’t adhere to the rigorous standards that appraisals do, and have become increasingly automated. However, the appraisal exemption — which would not apply to loans sold to or guaranteed by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, the Federal Housing Administration or the Department of Veterans Affairs — could help address an ongoing lack of appraisers, especially in rural areas of the country.”

Olson noted, “The appraiser population has been shrinking and the shortage is particularly acute in rural areas, which can make it much harder to lend there.”

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