Tech Tools | Harnessing Automation for Increased Appraisal Efficiency

Many appraisers have a deep-seated anxiety when it comes to technology. For years, the general industry consensus was that computers and artificial intelligence would eventually take over and make appraisers obsolete. However, like most industry shifts, the move to automate and streamline has played out as an evolution rather than a snap change.

In addition to moving at a slower pace, the move toward Automated Valuation Models (AVMs) has taken shape differently than many expected. Rather than pitting appraisers against AVMs in competition, a synergistic relationship has formed, allowing appraisers to use technology as a tool to accomplish more in less time without sacrificing quality of work.

Appraisal Buzz comments that “appraisals and collateral risk analyses are part art and part science.” The beauty off appraisal technology is that it can do the number-crunching and data comparisons—the “science”—while freeing up appraisers to use their experience, judgement and trained eye to create the “art.” As demonstrated below, the strong suits of technology and professional appraisers are complementary.

Verify transactions with parties
Report seller concessions
Observe and report age /condition
Reconcile conflicts in data
Identify functional obsolescence
Measure (for now)
Identify non-arms- length transactions

Analyze big data
Cheaper option
Speed & efficiency

The recent 2018 Mortgage Bankers Association Technology Conference focused on “the use of electronic notarization, e-notes, blockchains and data-based electronic verifications of borrower information.” With the goal of making things simpler for borrowers, incorporating AVM technology and electronic processes seems to be the path forward for the appraisal industry.

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