Appraisers Speak Out: Full Bifurcated Appraisal Results


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Editor’s Note: This survey was launched before the COVID-19 pandemic broke out and appraisers began performing exterior-only assignments. Nevertheless, the survey results published here are what the experts–licensed appraisers–say about fracturing the appraisal process in two and conferring the responsibility for the property inspections on to non-licensed and non-trained contractors.

Appraisers Speak Out: Full Bifurcated Appraisal Results

By David Brauner, Publisher of Working RE

Over 4,000 appraisers have participated in the OREP/Working RE Bifurcated Appraisal Survey to date. In addition to the 4,000+ survey responses, over 2,000 appraisers took the time share their perspectives on this important issue.

Taken together, the results provide valuable insight on how this particular “innovation” is perceived by the professional residential appraisers who currently specialize in this type of work.

While the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) has paused the testing and development of bifurcated appraisals that forgo the participation of licensed appraisers (See FHFA Puts Brakes on Fannie’s Bifurcated Program), Fannie Mae continues to test its bifurcated model that includes third-party, unlicensed inspectors.

In the last few years, we’ve heard from Fannie Mae and other advocates of the bifurcated appraisal model, but who better to ask than the boots-on-the-ground appraisers who are in the field, facing these issues every day.

Survey Responses
Question 1:
Have you done a bifurcated appraisal assignment as the Appraiser Analyst?

Yes: 17.21%
No: 82.79%



Question 2: Have you done a bifurcated appraisal assignment as the Property Data Collector?

Yes: 5.37%
No: 94.63%



Question 3: Will you consider future assignments as the Appraiser/Valuation Analyst only?

Yes: 24.98%
No: 75.02%




Question 4: Will you consider future assignments as the Property Data Collector only?

Yes: 25.39%
No: 74.61%



Question 5: If the Property Data Collector/Inspector is always a licensed Appraiser or Appraiser Trainee, would you be more likely to consider future assignments as an Appraiser/Valuation Analyst only?

Yes: 40.55%
No: 59.45%




Question 6: Please select the reasons for not accepting assignments as the Appraiser/Valuation Analyst only:

78.69% Liability concerns related to incomplete or inaccurate data from the property data collector.
73.89% Diffculty in credibly appraising a property that I haven’t physically inspected myself.
70.23% Inadequate fee for the amount of work.
70.14% Diffculty in credibly appraising a property where I haven’t driven the neighborhood, and/or the comparable sales, due to the possibility of an unreliable market analysis and/or other factors.
65.16% Believe it’s bad for the profession.
55.05% Compromised geographic competency and comparable sales selection in the absence of field work.
9.56% N/A, I am open to assignments as the Appraiser/Valuation Analyst only.


Click Here to View Graphic


Question 7: Please select reasons you will not consider assignments as the Property Data Collector only:

71.82% Inadequate fees
62.07% Believe it’s bad for the profession.
56.71% Potential Liability.
13.64% N/A, I am open to assignments as the Property Data Collector.

Click Here to View Graphic


Question 8: Which do you agree are possible benefits of Bifurcated Appraisals?

71.04% N/A, there are no benefits to Bifurcated Appraisals
20.81% Speed and cost advantage for clients who might forgo an appraisal otherwise.
12.26% Opportunity for appraisers to embrace advanced technology and computer analytics that will be essential for them to remain relevant.
8.02% Opportunity for appraisers to focus on higher-level analytical appraisal skills.

Click Here to View Graphic


Question 9: Do you believe that appraiser analysts who do not visit neighborhoods/ properties are in danger of losing their ability to produce credible reports over time due to a loss of familiarity with markets, neighborhood influences and/or other factors?

Yes: 88.80%
No: 11.20%



Question 10: Do you believe that the bifurcation process will speed appraisal turn times?

Yes: 19.10%
No: 80.90%



Nearly half of those who completed the three-minute survey were compelled enough to leave comments after completing the survey—you can find a link to the comments below.

The commentary overwhelmingly suggests that appraisers believe that the bifurcated model and the use of unlicensed, untrained and unaccountable contractors for key elements of collateral assessment will adversely affect the health and welfare of the housing finance system, increase their own liability and damage the public trust. The vast majority of appraisers taking the survey say they don’t want any part of it.

Read over 2,000 comments from appraisers here.



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>> Join the Discussion at OREP/Working RE’s Coronavirus (COVID-19) Discussion and Resource Page/a> where you can share your thoughts, experiences, advice and challenges with fellow appraisers.

>> Take OREP/Working RE’s Coronavirus: State of the Appraisal Industry survey here.

About the Author
David Brauner is Publisher of Working RE magazine and Senior Broker at OREP, a leading provider of E&O Insurance for appraisers, inspectors and other real estate professionals in 50 states ( He has provided E&O insurance to appraisers for over 25 years. He can be contacted at or (888) 347-5273. Calif. Insurance Lic. #0C89873. Visit today for comprehensive coverage at competitive rates.


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One Comment

  1. If you treasure your license-certification, why would you jeopardize it by relying on a stranger’s eyesight? It is still YOUR REPORT ! No small print in the certification can wish it away. Your adjustments are developed from what he/she saw. These evolve into your value conclusion.

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