Coester VMS Introduces Flat-Fee Appraisal System

Coester VMS, a national Appraisal Management Company and provider of reverse mortgage appraisal services this week announced it has moved from regional appraisal pricing to a flat-fee appraisal model nationwide. 

Regardless of location, all appraisals will be priced at the same level: $450 for conventional loans and $475 for FHA-insured loans. 

The change steers away from the regional flat-fee pricing that many AMCs use, which tends to account for differences among homes located in different regions and geographic areas. 

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“We simplified the process by looking over time at what the averages are, how we deal with appraisers, what appraisers charge, and what clients pay,” says Brian Coester, CEO of Coester VMS. 

The idea, ultimately, is that the price of an appraisal will average out for the consumer or the lender ordering the appraisal. 

Under current regulation, AMCs must charge fees that are reasonable and customary, which Coester says the new fee structure adheres to based on historic data collection on appraisals nationwide. 

As for whether other AMCs may catch on, Coester says it’s possible.

“It should be headed this way,” he says. “I think AMCs have overcomplicated things. I think it will catch on. There’s a little controversy, but we’re not getting negative feedback from clients.”

Written by Elizabeth Ecker

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