Interview With Larry Disney, Executive Director, Kentucky Real Estate Appraisers Board

BUZZ: Larry, thanks for taking the time to speak with us. Can you tell our readers a little bit about your history in the appraisal industry and your current position.

DISNEY: Since 2003 I have been employed as the Executive Director of the Kentucky Real Estate Appraisers Board (KREAB), and from 1999 until September 2003 I was the Chief Investigator for Appraiser complaints with the KREAB. I began appraising real property assignments in 1977, and practiced full time from 1977 through 1999 when I was employed by the KREAB. Since 1982 I have developed and instructed qualifying education and continuing education courses for real estate licensees and real property appraisers. I hold the following licenses and designations, Kentucky Certified General Real Property Appraiser, Kentucky Real Estate Broker, designated SRA member of the Appraisal Institute, designated IFAS by the National Association of Independent Fee Appraisers, certified as an AQB USPAP Instructor, certified by the International Distance Education Certification Center as a Distance Education Instructor, and I am the immediate past president of the Association of Appraiser Regulatory Officials (AARO).

BUZZ: I understand you have an announcement to share with us. Do tell.

DISNEY: On Friday June 19, 2015 the Kentucky Real Estate Appraisers Board accepted the study for “Kentucky Residential Real Estate Appraisal Fees for 2014.”

BUZZ: What were some of the reasons for this study?

DISNEY: During a meeting in 2014, the KREAB approved to issue a request for proposal (RFP) to develop a fee study of residential real property appraisal fees completed throughout all areas of Kentucky. The study was requested because of a provision of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, and the board belief that the Appraisal Subcommittee (ASC) will expect the board to have a process in place assist in the requirement to comply with section 129E(a) – (i) of the Truth in Lending Act, 15 U.S.C. 1639e (a) – (i), and the regulations thereunder.

When issued, the Dodd-Frank Act included the language – “Lenders and their agents shall compensate fee appraisers at a rate that is customary and reasonable for appraisal services performed in the market area of the property being appraised. Evidence for such fees may be established by objective third-party information, such as government agency fee schedules, academic studies, and independent private sector surveys. Fee studies shall exclude assignments ordered by known appraisal management companies.”

While there was no specificity given for the agency or group to enforce the provision, it was apparent that regardless of the agency or entity identified to enforce the act when allegations are levied for AMC failure to pay customary fees, it was the opinion of the KREAB that there must first be an independent, objective and unbiased study of customary fees developed to use in debating and resolving the matter. It was determined that the one source having the greatest credibility to develop the results would be an institution of academic studies or a third party source that possessed similar resources for completing an independent survey.

BUZZ: Who developed your fee study for you?

DISNEY: The KREAB issued the Request for Proposal through the Kentucky Department of Procurement. The process requires specific language, including a detailed scope of work for the job task being requested. Following the exposure time of one month, the board did receive one response from Southeastern Louisiana University Business Research Center. Following a review of the scope of work, and discussion with the personnel at Southeastern Louisiana University the board approved the proposal and work began. The research was developed, the study was completed and the results were presented to the board in June 2015.

BUZZ: How will this fee study affect appraisers in Kentucky?

DISNEY: The impact for both Kentucky credentialed appraisers and registered AMCs remains to be seen. The study was accepted by the board less than one week ago, therefore, it is much too early to gauge any results or have any comments from appraisers, lenders, borrowers or Kentucky registered AMCs.

The fee study included a survey of fees from each of the one-hundred twenty (120) counties within the Commonwealth of Kentucky, and specifically six (6) different appraisal form uses and types, 1) form 1004, 2) 1004 for FHA, 3) 1004C, 4) 1025, 5) 1073, and 6) 2055.

The fee study will not be used by the board for purposes of settling any dispute of fees outside the intent of the board complying with the expectations of the Dodd-Frank Act. Also, the study did not include requests for varying complexity of assignments.

BUZZ: When the AMC Final Rules were issued did it affect any of the laws Kentucky already had in place?

DISNEY: The existing Kentucky real statutes will be evaluated by legal counsel for a determination of what, if any, statutory revisions will be required to the current statutes. It is possible that much, if not all, of the expectations and requirements can be put addressed by administrative regulation. However, it is much too early to make a definitive statement about the impact.

On behalf of the board and staff of the KREAB, we request that if anyone has questions or wishes to comment on the study, please contact the KREAB at 859-623-1658 or larry.disney@ky.gov, tom.veit@ky.gov, angie.thomas@ky.gov or kim.mathias@ky.gov.

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5 comments

  1. Avatar
    Retired Appraiser

    This reminds of a video on YouTube showing a high speed turn of the aircraft carrier USS Harry Truman.

    The turn is so severe that the deck slopes 30 degrees. It only takes a few minutes to turn it however, as opposed to the Kentucky Appraiser Board taking 6.3 years to get off their duffs. Thank God I didn’t hold my breath; I wouldn’t touch an appraisal in Kentucky for twice the fees they’ve noted cue to increased turn times, the 1004 MC, massive liability, and that glorious new self embalming kit known as CU.

    Thanks Kentucky

    • Avatar

      Kentucky has the best Appraisal Board and Executive Director in the Country. Thanks, Larry for all you do for Kentucky as well as the Country. Keep up the great work!

      • Avatar
        Retired Appraiser

        Kentucky has one of the best executive directors in the country in Larry, I agree. Louisiana and a few other states are well ahead of Kentucky however when it comes down to recognizing the number one problem facing appraisers (fee theft & transparency). Larry is a great guy and extremely knowledgeable but Kentucky (and nearly every other state) have been asleep at the wheel for six years. It’s a simple fact and one that is inexcusable.

  2. Avatar

    In every fee survey I have recently seen the questions are flawed from
    the start, and thus, I believe the data will be flawed in the end. Since HVCC in
    2008/2009 we have been attacked with massive amounts of scope creep and really
    need to answer the question (our typical fee) from a standpoint of meeting USPAP guidelines and not from what is expected by our lender clients today (AMC or not). I explain it to people like this, if I go to a high end carwash business they may have 5 pre-determined plans for me to choose from and several other individual options (leather treatment, wax, hand wash, headlight restoration, etc), this same thought should be applied to the appraisal fee. The standard / typical appraisal fee will not include any additional maps, photos, active / pending comps, graphs, unnecessary and unneeded verbiage, non-required FHA type inspection for conventional loans, have no restrictions on comp distance, and will not be subjected to some randomly chosen time frame (within 90 days). However, in the current real world we have been asked to provide all of the carwash extras while the consumer/bank wants to pay for the lowest level plan. Their needs to be an industry wide reeducation of the banks to establish and agree what the set standards are and to understand they need to pay for their added service. I think appraisers may be providing fees to this minimum standard and are not quoting from what is truly being asked of us. These additional requirements have at times added 30 to 50% of the total time for me to complete an appraisal and with this in consideration, I think the true fees need to be a few hundred dollars higher. So again, if the survey question does not specifically outline in great detail as to what the expanded scope of work extensively calls for, then the results will be flawed.

    • Avatar
      Retired Appraiser

      You nailed it Bill Johnson. I would argue that the amount of time required per appraisal to truly protect yourself legally has doubled. Increased liability (which has undoubtedly risen ten fold) also plays a part in the fee.

      If the truth be known, residential appraisers do an excellent job of valuing real estate but fail miserably when it comes down to assessing the value of their own time.

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