Should You Do Appraisal Work for an Appraisal Management Company?

You hear it over and over again from many seasoned appraisers. They talk about AMCs like they are the spawn of satan themselves.

There are a lot of AMCs out there, and while there may be some bad seeds, there are good ones as well.

For some appraisers, appraisal management companies are their sole source of work. For others, they won't touch them

In this article, I will try to explain the pros and cons of working for an AMC and hopefully help you find the answer to the question “Should You Do Appraisal Work for an Appraisal Management Company?”.

AMC Background

Appraisal management companies (AMCs) have been around for many years now, most since 2009 and some dating back to the mid-1900s.

The purpose of an AMC is to bridge the gap between the lender and the appraiser. They help facilitate the entire appraisal process from order to review and they can be operated by anyone​​.

They come in all sizes, from one-man shops to companies with thousands of employees. Some cover a small area, and some are national.

Working for an appraisal management company

Working for an AMC, like everything, has its pros and its cons.

AMC work can be very lucrative if the market is hot.

The larger ones provide a steady stream of work without having to do any marketing for yourself. They handle the payments and facilitate the entire appraisal process, so all you have to do is what you’re good at, the appraisal.

On the flip side, some are very good at micro-managing and asking for questionable revisions. They typically have lower fees with faster turnaround times. Overall, they are more demanding.

Pros

  • No marketing to get work
  • A consistent stream of work
  • Payments handled for you
  • Minimal communication with borrowers
  • More stable workflow
  • Some offer hybrid/desktop appraisals

Cons

  • Some can micro-manage
  • Some are perceived as incompetent
  • Often require revisions (Sometimes very questionable - see bullet above)
  • Lower fees
  • Faster turnaround times
  • More demanding

Why you would want to do AMC work

If you are the kind of appraiser who just wants to do appraisals and worry about nothing else, then AMC work is good for you.

If you work for a number of AMCs, the work tends to have a consistent flow, so marketing yourself for private work is unnecessary.

The AMC handles the payments, so your accounting and time spent trying to get paid is minimal.

Sure the fees may be lower, but the volume makes up for it. You don’t have to worry day in and out about marketing yourself to get more business.

Why you would NOT want to do AMC work

If you hate the sound of lower fees, faster turnaround times, and constant revisions, then AMC’s might not be for you.

You will have to handle more of the business side of your appraisal business (Marketing, accounting, payments, etc.) by not working for an AMC, but you will get more autonomy.

Some AMCs are hard to deal with, and some have been known not to pay.

Doing private work provides you with more freedom because you are the only one you have to answer to.

Conclusion

As you can see, the decision of whether or not to do AMC work really comes down to you and your personal preferences.

I don't mind AMC work because it means I don’t have to consistently think about marketing and where I will get my next assignments from. The consistent semi-monthly pay is nice, and if you find the right AMCs, they can be tolerable.

For others, however, the headache is not worth it.

The constant emails, phone calls, and revisions can be tiring after a while. They would rather deal with private work or direct lenders.

When it comes down to it, the choice is yours.

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About AMCDIR.com

AMCDIR.com is the largest online directory of appraisal management companies. Originally started in 2009 and relaunched in 2021, AMCDIR.com features appraisal management companies across the United States. We are constantly adding new AMCs and updating old ones, so be sure to check back often if you are looking for more real estate appraisal work.