The Appraisal Standards Board (ASB) has just issued their July 2008 USPAP Q&A - Download July_2008_QA.pdf with the following questions/topics:
- Electronic Report Delivery
- Can Appraisers Perform "Comp Check" Assignments?
- Can Appraisers Perform "Comp Check" Assignments for Free?
- Is Disclosure of a Free "Comp Check" Assignment Required?
The following is a lighthearted, but serious, review of the "Comp Check" Q&A's provided by George Dodd, SRA and originally appeared on the WinTOTAL Users Group forum:
It is "a dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind", "a place of things and ideas", "between the pit of Man's fears, and the summit of his knowledge". (Rod Serling).
1. You cannot do a comp check with the purpose of receiving an order for appraisal on the same property. However you can do comp checks for the purpose of maintaining a business relationship with a client in the attempt of getting business. (see the difference?)
2. You can do a comp check and get an appraisal order for an appraisal on the same property as long as you didn’t do a comp check for the purpose of getting the order. And you can continue to do comp checks as long as you are not doing comp checks to get specific appraisal requests. (see the difference?)
3. If you did a comp check and then received an appraisal request for a property you did a comp check for, but you didn’t do the comp check in order to get the appraisal assignment, then you don’t need to disclose that you did a comp check because the comp check was not done for the purpose of getting the appraisal request. However, if you did the comp check for the purpose of getting the appraisal request than you cannot do the appraisal because it was conditioned on doing the comp check. However, if you did the comp check for the purpose of getting the appraisal report and then received the appraisal report as a result of doing the comp check then you need to disclose you did the comp check in the appraisal you can’t do.
Of course this does not answer the question: If I do comp checks for a client on a regular basis in the course of receiving work, or the client otherwise expects comp checks to be done in order to receive appraisal requests, does that evade the specific property comp check and appraisal request dilemma?
One must concede the ultimate humor with these Q&A from the ASB. Who else could answer a question so directly and specifically and provide guidance for us grunts. In the end it is up to each of us individually to do right and maintain our own ethics.
It is unfortunate that others will subvert the USPAP rules to their own ends. But the USPAP is not created to protect appraisers, its purpose and function is to protect the users of appraisal services and provide them the maximum amount of latitude in demanding appraisers do what they want.
AUTHOR: George Dodd, SRA. Mr. Dodd can be reached by email at: GeorgeDodd@comcast.net or by phone at (804) 746-2270 .