Inside the Review Part 1 – The Technical Review and The Desk Review

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Inside the Review Part 1 – The Technical Review and The Desk Review

Valuation Management Group offers both residential and commercial Technical Reviews and Desk Reviews. VMG’s clients frequently report to us that our review process allows the appraisal process to be more cost effective for their company, while at the same time increasing efficiency and providing a comfort level that quality and compliance are being handled.

There are many types of real estate appraisal reviews, and we are going to discuss two of them to clarify for our client and appraiser partners how Valuation Management Group navigates the review process.

The appraisal review focuses on the report, not the appraiser. It is an impartial and constructive evaluation of the report’s content and whether the reasoning leads the reader to the supported value conclusion.

Technical Reviews are performed by VMG’s experienced review appraisers. The reviewer assumes the appraiser has collected, confirmed, and analyzed the most relevant data in an effort to form the value opinion. In many cases, the reviewer may contact the appraiser and ask for additional supporting documentation to help the reader better understand the conclusions presented in the report. Occasionally, mathematical errors lead the reviewer to question the value conclusion. Usually, these items can be added or resolved quickly prior to delivery of the report to the client.

In addition to evaluating the credibility of the value opinion, the reviewer also checks the report for compliance with USPAP, FIRREA, and The InterAgency Appraisal and Evaluation Guidelines. VMG also reviews to the standard of the Appraisal Institute’s recommendations, which can be viewed by clicking here.

The appraisal report must identify the intended use and users of the report, the type of value being reported, the property rights being appraised, the effective date of the value opinion, the scope of work used to develop the appraisal, and the appraisal methods and techniques applied. Items such as a signed Certification Statement must be included to advise the reader of the appraiser’s impartiality and to disclose whether or not the appraiser has prior familiarity with the property or if significant professional assistance was obtained to complete the assignment.

It is the reviewer’s intent to deliver a credible appraisal report and a comprehensible technical review of that report to the client. The technical review does not opine on value.

The InterAgency Appraisal and Evaluation Guidelines document contains a section that states that “an institution’s policies and procedures for reviewing appraisals and evaluations, at a minimum, should reflect a risk-focused approach for determining the depth of review.”  The document further states that “transactions involving complex properties or high-risk commercial loans should be reviewed more comprehensively to assess the technical quality of the appraiser’s analysis.  A more comprehensive review of transactions involving large-dollar credits, loans secured by complex or specialized properties, and properties outside the institution’s traditional lending market.”  As such, we occasionally have clients who request an even more in-depth review, which is a Desk Review.   In addition to all of the steps taken in a technical review, the desk review further includes the reviewer’s own research into additional comparable data and the reviewer’s own opinion of the validity of the appraisal’s concluded value.

The Quality Assurance Appraisal Review team at VMG has an average of over 20 years real estate appraisal experience. Their expertise in all property types contributes great value to the financial institution’s confidence in the quality of their appraisals.

Should you have questions about the review process or how Valuation Management Group could assist you, please call us or email:

Valuation Management Group is a national, full service appraisal management service company that manages the appraisal process for financial institutions, banks, mortgage bankers, and credit unions. We offer the full array of commercial and residential appraisal products and services. We take the appraisal process from ordinary to extraordinary.

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