AXIS Chief Appraiser Addresses AMC Best Practices

Appraiser News
Wednesday, December 14, 2016
Valuation Review Article | An Editorial by AXIS’ Chief Appraiser, Bill Waltenbaugh

There is the notion felt by many in the valuation industry that an AMC passes orders from the client, to an appraiser, then back to the client again, collecting half of the fees. This is not to suggest that these AMCs do not exist, but those that do are not under the umbrella of those who exercise best practices.


So what does an AMC exercising best practices do?

  Continue reading


AXIS is blessed to have many employees coming from different backgrounds and ages. One day we posed the question: “What music reminds you of summer? You know, those lazy days spent by the water with the warm sun and an ice cold drink?”.

We were surprised by all the different responses. Some are iconic, some we never even heard of.  So we thought we would compile an AXIS Summer Mixtape playlist so you can enjoy some summer music on the way to your inspections. See if you recognize what we chose.


TRACKLISTING: Continue reading

AXIS Appraisal Update: Fannie Mae CU Rollout

Axis has been following the developments regarding Collateral Underwriter (CU) very closely since its announcement at MBA this past fall. In short, we have attended all of the available trainings and read all of the announcements regarding CU and have a comprehensive understanding of how it is expected to work. Please understand, CU is a process that is currently a Fannie Mae initiative that is separate from and does not include Freddie Mac or FHA assignments. Continue reading

AQC: Introduction to Appraisers

Regulatory compliance; an ominous concept to ponder, particularly amongst the heightened regulatory environment, which has ensued in the wake of the “Great Recession”. Yet the fact of the matter is that this term or concept, foreboding as it may be, presents a new opportunity for appraisers to prosper. In recent years, many states have instituted rules and regulations governing the operations of AMCs p Continue reading

AXIS Guide to Our 2015 Appreciation Party

If you haven’t already heard, Axis is planning a big party at the beginning of next year. And here’s the best part, you’re our guest of honor. At Axis we recognize and understand that without our valued clients and dedicated panel of appraisers, our success and growth would not be possible. Without our clients we have no purpose and without our valuation partners we have no product. For this reason, we invite you to be our guest for the day on Friday January 23rd, 2015 for an opportunity to meet face-to-face and allow us to appreciate your hard work and dedication. And if one day isn’t enough, we have continuing education available Saturday morning… but not too early!

So what do we have planned? I’m glad you asked. The day begins early with an open house starting at 9am at our headquarters in San Rafael. But don’t get to comfortable because we have a few small informative but interactive sessions starting at 10am. In the first session you can learn about AQI and how it makes Axis quality control one of the best in the business. In the same session we will also discuss a new and exciting product called AQC, which is Axis’ proprietary Standard 3 desktop compliance review. Immediately following that session we will bring everyone up to speed on our latest alternative valuation product – GEAR. And if you haven’t had enough, we would love for you to join us in discussing the latest developments in Fannie Mae’s Collateral Underwriter (CU). Remember, these meetings are interactive so do your homework (if you want) and bring your questions. We can’t wait to hear your feedback and try to answer your questions. If you plan on attending our Friday Open House and/or attend one of the small group sessions please RSVP with a ticket HERE. See below for break out session detailed schedule:

At high noon we invite our valuation partners that are interested in Continuing Education to join me back at the Embassy Suites for four hours of CE where we will dive head first into the Appraisal Institute (AI) developed course “Unraveling the Mysteries of Fannie Mae Guidelines”. By the end of class we should all have a better understanding of Fannie Mae’s guidelines, gain some tips on how to stay current with changes, and even call out some of the misconceptions about the guidelines. Last I checked this AI course is approved for 4 hours of CE in most states with exception to my own– New York. To be safe, be sure to check the AI website for state approvals. However, I can confirm that CA and AZ made the cut. Please note there is a small fee of $50 to participate in this offering – what a bargain! To purchase tickets click HERE.

After listening to me drone on for four hours about Fannie Mae Guidelines, I’m sure everyone will be more than ready to relax with their favorite beverage and some tasty food. Well good news, Axis is inviting everyone to join us at Classic Billiards for food, drinks, pool, music, and conversation between 4pm and 8pm. And here is the best part – it’s all on us! Yes really… you deserve it. To RSVP to our Appreciation Party at Classic Billiards in San Rafael, please register for a ticket HERE.

green learningBut that’s not it. For the diehards in the group, we have one more event planned. At 10am Saturday morning we will be providing four more hours of CE at the Embassy Suites. While 10am is early for a Saturday, it’s a lot better than the standard starting time of most CE courses. So get up and get downstairs to learn about Green Energy Appraising. Did you know, per FHA, an appraiser must note which “energy efficiency building component” features are installed in a house and calculate whether and how each component affects the value of the property? In a recent exposure draft from The Appraisal Foundation’s Appraisal Practices Board (APB) it was stated that appraisers might fail to observe green features in the appraisal because they either do not know how to address them, or simply fail to note their existence, potentially resulting in an error of omission. Many green characteristics are virtually invisible on a typical inspection, such as high-performance glazing, above-standard insulation, energy-efficient lighting, motion- and daylight-responsive lighting controls, or an advanced building automation/management system (BAS/BMS). Competent appraisers can be expected to know what to look for and what questions to ask to avoid missing relevant features.

This 4 hour continuing education course introduces participants to the concepts behind building beyond code, emphasizing an understanding of and familiarity with the primary high performance certifications (both green and energy efficiency) being adopted by the market. In short, at a price of just $50, you can’t afford to miss this one. In fact, it is a great first step in becoming recognized on Axis panel as a Green and Energy Efficient expert. Although not yet confirmed, we are confident this offering will be approved for 4 hours of CE in both CA and AZ. Sorry; it isn’t going to be approved in any other states. To purchase tickets click HERE.

Well that’s it, a full day and a half of learning, networking, and fun. We sure hope you can make it because together we’re better.

AXIS Fifth Annual Appreciation Party 2015


Friday, January 23, 2015

Join us for a fun night of billiards, refreshments, and food as we celebrate YOU – our wonderful clients and vendors.

Open House Events – Axis HQ (9am-4pm meet our staff)

10 am – Appraiser’s View of AQI/AQC*

10:30 am – Appraiser’s Overview of GEAR*

11 am – Appraiser’s Guide to CU*

Continuing Education by AI **

12-4 pm – Unraveling the Mysteries of Fannie Mae Guidelines

Appreciation Party – Classic Billiards

4-8 pm – food, drinks, pool, music, conversations – all on us!

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Continuing Education**

Green Energy Appraising – become part of our emerging Green Panel of Appraisers by learning how to accurately analyze and appraise green building features.

* Small groups – sign up required

**$50 entry fee per course includes materials; verify your state has been approved for CE at time of registration.

For tickets click HERE