Within the mortgage loan process, the need for faster valuation turn times continues to be a dilemma for lenders. The question for the industry has always been: How can valuations be done faster without sacrificing quality?
Now, First American Mortgage Solutions, which is focused on developing innovative web-based, data-driven solutions, is changing the valuation landscape with its Smarter Valuations offering, a unique combination of assets that offers lenders increased efficiency and greater accuracy for a better, faster consumer experience.
In initial testing, Smarter Valuations reduced appraisal turn times by 33%, while also improving quality. The company says it continues to see significant improvement and expects a further reduction in turn times. The new solution first helps identify the best appraiser for an individual job and then assists the appraiser with both research and reference data.
“Smarter Valuations is our response to the increasing demand from lenders for a valuation partner that can deliver more accurate, data-enabled appraisals,” Alan Hummel, chief appraiser and vice president, said. “Our transformed Smarter Valuations workflow is exceeding consumer expectations for high-quality and timely appraisals.”
First American Mortgage Solutions covers 100% of U.S. housing markets through its nationwide network of more than 20,000 credentialed appraisers — in addition to its own staff appraisers. This flexible staffing model, coupled with First American’s unique data assets, helps the company select the most qualified appraiser for every assignment.
“Because the new valuation process is infused with our vast data assets and superior rules technology, we have been able to satisfy GSE regulations and compliance requirements,” Hummel said.
First American Mortgage Solutions has been steadily investing in its valuation assets through strategic acquisitions and building out its property database to be the leading source for property records in the U.S. It now holds 6 billion recorded document images that cover nationwide property data and homeownership information.
The company also has a cloud-based suite of valuation technology used by more than 25,000 appraisers for a streamlined approach to managing forms, rules and data.
“We’ve received overwhelmingly positive feedback about our efforts to achieve high-quality appraisals in record time, and appraisers are open to using tools that will make them more efficient and enable them to stay competitive,” Hummel said. “Lenders are excited at the prospect of expediting the appraisal process because it will allow them to offer a better consumer experience.”
First American Mortgage Solutions continues to expand its SaaS capabilities to help connect lenders, appraisers and borrowers. The company is planning more data integrations to assist with quality assurance checks and to expedite property research, as well as exploring ways to continue accelerating the valuation process through auto-population of factual property data.
“We are at the leading edge of establishing collaborative approaches to completing appraisal assignments, infused with quality assurance checks throughout the valuation lifecycle,” Hummel said. “We’re the only ones to offer lenders a complete suite of conventional and alternative valuation products combined with technology, data and analytics.”