Appraisal Changes Coming

November 23, 2021
As the market is faced with a shortage of housing appraisers Fannie Mae plans on accepting more remote appraisals.


This is why Desktop Appraisals won’t be a complete solution for mortgage lenders. The U.S. housing market is booming during the coronavirus pandemic in spite of a little-noticed chokepoint: There just aren’t enough property appraisers to visit and evaluate all the houses changing hands and being refinanced. Hoping to find at least a partial solution to that problem, the overseer of mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will begin accepting more “desktop appraisals” in early 2022. The Federal Housing Finance Agency said recently that these remote valuations will take the place of some traditional appraisals, which require appraisers to visit properties that serve as collateral for mortgages. Instead of physically touring properties for sale, appraisers will inspect listing information and other data from their work stations, said Sandra Thompson, acting director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency.  Still, there’s the appraiser shortage. One challenge: Becoming an appraiser requires a lengthy apprenticeship. Another issue: Regulatory reforms enacted during the Great Recession roiled the appraisal market. And appraisers are a graying group, with many retiring in recent years.   The result? The number of appraisers is shrinking. In 2013, nearly 44,000 appraisers were working in the U.S. housing market. Today, that total barely tops 40,000, according to Fannie Mae. At the same time, demand for appraisals hit record levels in 2021, Fannie Mae says, driven by the combination of strong refinancing volume and red-hot home sales

Source: Rise and Shred