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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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First American Mortgage Solutions leverages technology and expert appraisers to deliver efficient, high-quality valuations

This innovative technology provides greater accuracy, leading to a better customer experience

Over the last several years, significant technology trends continue to change the way people interact and work, and collateral valuation is no exception. First American continues to innovate its valuation business by delivering instant access to property data; improving collaboration among appraisers, appraisal management staff and lenders; and implementing cutting-edge quality assurance tools. This results in increased efficiency and greater accuracy, leading to an excellent customer experience. 

First American offers an integrated suite of staff and network appraisal products and services, including standard appraisals, collateral inspection services and hybrid valuations through First American Mortgage Solutions’ Appraisal Management Company (AMC) and the First American Staff Appraiser Company. This unique valuation offering is bolstered by the industry’s largest, most comprehensive database of property and homeowner information and recorded document images. 

Traditionally, appraisers gather information manually in the field and return to their desktop for data entry. However, both First American’s network and staff appraisers receive a comprehensive property data report before inspection, allowing them to better understand the subject property, establish comparable data and quickly identify potential complexities. Leveraging the company’s proprietary technologies – ACI Sky Delivery and ACI Sky Review – helps speed up the process and provides easier access to data for assessing the property.

ACI Sky Delivery applies dynamic rules to identify exceptions and render real-time results, while ACI Sky Review offers an interactive window into the appraisal report, empowering greater quality control. These features enable quick and efficient review of the reports and increase the quality of the services First American provides through both its AMC and Staff Appraiser Company.  

Even as First American continues to innovate its technology, the company relies extensively on its vetted panel of experienced and knowledgeable appraisers to deliver a robust, high-quality valuation. Using the First American valuations platform, network appraisers are more efficient, and their valuations are more accurate.

“Our applications incorporate the country’s largest property database and our innovative QC technology in everything we do,” says Peter Krumm, chief appraiser, First American Mortgage Solutions. “Appraisers can choose to use the information provided or amend it based on their inspection and expertise. With built-in, automated quality controls, appraiser reports are checked as they are submitted, helping them adhere to lender requirements. Not only does this cut down on the back-and-forth between valuation experts, lenders and borrowers, it also boosts efficiency and improves accuracy, which ultimately reduces inconveniences for homeowners.”

“We understand how important data integrity is to our clients,” says Angie Marks, national sales director, First American Mortgage Solutions. “We are always seeking ways to leverage technology to eliminate data omissions and compliance issues. With the implementation of recent technology enhancements, pre-delivery report rejections have decreased by 42%.”

By leveraging automation, First American’s AMC lessens the administrative time spent on reports, reduces revision rates and generates a paper trail for quality assurance. By compressing turn time without sacrificing quality, lenders and investors can be as effective as possible. 

“Our valuations technology and automation solutions not only help First American deliver a better experience for our lender and AMC customers,” says Matt Hocevar, director of valuations, head of First American Mortgage Solutions AMC. “But these solutions also help us achieve it faster and with higher quality.” 

Matt Hocevar

Matt Hocevar, Senior Director of Valuations, Head of the First American Mortgage Solutions AMC

Matt Hocevar, SRA, has 18-plus years of experience in the real estate appraisal industry as a field appraiser, review appraiser, and operational manager leading the valuations team through total quality management at First American Mortgage Solutions.


Peter Krumm, Chief Appraiser, First American Mortgage Solutions

Peter Krumm joined First American in 2016 with the company’s acquisition of Forsythe Appraisals where he successfully managed multiple branch locations. As an Appraisal Manager, his responsibilities include quality control, quality assurance, various pilot programs, and regulatory compliance.


Angie Marks, National Sales Director, First American Mortgage Solutions

In her role, Angie works alongside executives to strengthen customer relationships and collaborate across departments to create operational efficiencies and improve end-user experience. In 2013, she received First American’s Excellence Award and is an outstanding leader with a strong reputation for coaching and mentoring sales representatives.

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