Honesty and Integrity: Freedom AppraisalsAppraising is typically a long term career. Requirements to become a licensed appraiser have become more difficult than ever before. So it goes without question in this day and age that real estate appraisal can unquestionably be dubbed a profession as opposed to a trade. In our field, as with any profession, we must follow strict ethical considerations.
The appraiser's primary responsibility is to their client. Typically, in residential practice, the appraiser's client is the lender ordering the appraisal, and often the appraisal is ordered by a third party the lender has retained to maintain independence. It's important to know that a lot of elements pertaining to an assignment are to be discussed with the appraiser's client. As a homeowner, if you want to obtain a copy of an appraisal report, you normally should get it through your lender.
In some cases appraisers will have fiduciary responsibilities to third parties, including homeowners, both buyers and sellers, or others. Those third parties normally are defined in scope of the appraisal assignment itself. An appraiser's fiduciary duty is limited to those parties who the appraiser is aware of, based on the scope of work or other things in the framework of the assignment.
There are also ethical rules that have nothing to do with whom we share information. For example, appraisers must keep their work files for at least five years - something else Freedom Appraisals takes very seriously.
Freedom Appraisals holds itself to the industry standards and rules set in place for professional behavior. We refuse to accept anything less from ourselves. Working on assignments where our fee is dependent on our value conclusion is not something we can consider. That is, we don't agree to do an appraisal report and collect payment on the contingency of the loan closing. There's a definite conflict of interest if an appraiser can report a greater value with the reward of getting paid more money! We set ourselves to a higher standard.
Finally, the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (or simply "USPAP") clearly defines unethical behavior as the acceptance of an assignment that is contingent on "the reporting of a pre-determined result (e.g., opinion of value)", "a direction in assignment results that favors the cause of the client", or "the amount of a value opinion" as well as other situations. We follow these rules to the letter which means you can be confident we are working hard to provide an unbiased determination of the home or property value.
With Freedom Appraisals, you can be assured of 100 percent ethical, honest service.