Announcing Virtual Inspection from Reggora: Confident Appraisals in the Time of COVID-19
It is a crazy time to be in the mortgage industry. Refinance boom, shelter in place orders, recording offices closed—the list goes on and on as to why this is an unprecedented period. All of this has stressed the system massively, and if a mortgage lender has a hidden flaw somewhere in its process, it is being revealed.
The valuation industry has similarly been stressed due to a combination of factors. The demand for refis is skyrocketing while the supply of appraisers stays the same. On top of that, we’re experiencing a global pandemic which implores people to stay home and not interact with strangers; which, as you can imagine, is not conducive to an industry where the majority of loans are dependent upon letting a stranger (the appraiser) into your home.
As a result, the government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) and various government agencies have announced temporary relief programs so that lending, with some form of risk analysis on the collateral side, can still take place.
This means that the majority of appraisals, which previously included interior inspections, are now potentially eligible to be completed as either exterior-only appraisals or even desktop appraisals, where no physical inspection takes place.
Practically speaking, this means that many lenders would need to:
- Change their appraisal products in whatever systems they use (not always easy if using a legacy system with complex pricing);
- Update/communicate instructions to the appraisal vendors, since these alternative products require specific language in the scope of work and certification sections of an appraisal report;
- Confirm the eligibility of these products with other secondary market investors, insurance companies, and more.
I could go on, but you get the idea. There’s no shortage of work to be done, so we need to look for efficiencies wherever possible.
With innovation at the heart of our mission, the Reggora team acted fast to see how we could support the needs of the industry’s new, unique workflows. We spoke with customers to identify the most pressing challenges that we could address, and quickly focused on the virtual inspection—the ability for the homeowner to provide supplemental information to the assessment.
With that, we built the Virtual Inspection tool as part of the Reggora platform, which is offered to all Reggora customers at no additional cost. With our easy-to-use Virtual Inspection tool, the homeowner or occupant can answer customized information about the property and take geotagged photos to be delivered to both the underwriting team at the lender, as well as the appraisal vendor.
Unlike similar tools made just for home appraisers, Virtual Inspection integrates with your existing Reggora workflow and automates the entire process, pulling relevant information from your LOS. The process is simple. An auto-generated email will be sent directly to the homeowner from the Reggora platform; the homeowner opens the link from their phone, answers simple questions and takes photos; and then the information is sent directly to the lender and the appraiser.
This provides an immense benefit to anyone looking to make sure that proper risk analysis is still being done reliably during this difficult time. If you have any questions or would like to see it for yourself, request a demo today at www.reggora.com/virtual-inspection.