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Home appraisal’s ugly history and uncertain future

This is Part I of a deep dive into the home appraisal industry. Today we explore the origins of the appraisal industry and its current lack of diversity.

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Fannie Mae to make proprietary appraisal tool available to lenders

Lenders can use Collateral Underwriter in 2015

Lenders who sell loans to Fannie Mae will soon be able to use Fannie’s proprietary appraisal analysis application, Collateral Underwriter, to analyze loans prior to closing to ensure that the loans conform to Fannie’s standards, which should decrease repurchase risk, the GSE said Monday.

Beginning in early 2015, Fannie will make Collateral Underwriter available to lenders as part of its industry tools package, which also includes Desktop Underwriter and Early Check. Together, the package helps lenders make loans with confidence, Fannie said.

Fannie currently uses Collateral Underwriter when a lender delivers a loan. The application uses Fannie’s market data and analytical models to perform a comprehensive assessment of the appraisal.

The tool then provides an overall risk score and detailed messaging to highlight specific aspects of the appraisal that may warrant further attention.

“Using Collateral Underwriter during the origination of the loan will allow the lender to assess the appraisal and address any issues prior to closing and delivery to Fannie Mae,” Fannie said in a release.

The GSE also said that it anticipates that using Collateral Underwrite will help lenders expand access to credit by providing increased clarity about the potential repurchase risk with a loan. 

“Our goal is to provide relief on appraisal representations and warranties in the future, and we will work with Federal Housing Finance Agency to do so,” said Andrew Bon Salle, executive vice president, single-family underwriting, pricing, and capital markets.

“We want to be the business partner of choice for lenders by providing the tools and products lenders need. Collateral Underwriter will help lenders build their businesses safely and strongly.”

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