by George Opelka, SVP
BUZZ: It was extremely helpful for ACI to provide industry leaders with a preview of UAD at work within the ACI software at the Collateral Risk Network meetings in New Orleans last month. This was the first opportunity for many to see UAD up close from the appraiser’s point-of-view. Can you comment on the reaction from the Q&A that continued throughout the session?
Opelka: The session was very well received and it was an educational exercise that facilitated many positive comments and questions which were then addressed in the demo. Liz Green, ACI’s Director of Valuation Technologies did an admirable job providing a brief UAD overview and walking the group through the ACI software which featured UAD picklists, rules, and appraiser guidance.
BUZZ: It’s obvious that ACI put a lot of thought into the software to help both the appraiser and the intended user. I really like the addition of the UAD Glossary Addendum, and I think the underwriters will too! Will this be commonplace across all appraisal software?
Opelka: My sense is that the software vendors will provide a glossary of some type. With all the various codes for condition, quality, and newly introduced abbreviations, the UAD Glossary is a necessary addition that will help underwriters better understand the appraisal report right out of the gate. And you’re right, there certainly was a significant level of planning that went into this project. For example, we incorporated online “guidance” for any UAD field in order to help ACI appraisers right at the point of data entry. Given the ground rules provided by the GSEs, the objective was to make the process as simple as possible for an ACI appraiser.
BUZZ: Is there anything that appraisers can do to prepare for UAD in advance of the September 1, 2011 inception date?
Opelka: There are numerous steps appraisers should take to become aware and prepare for UAD. First of all, both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have excellent resources on the web specific to UAD readiness. I’ll include the links below to Fannie and Freddie’s resources, and I strongly encourage appraisers to become acquainted with either of these helpful UAD primers. Secondly, appraisers should talk to their appraisal software vendor and get a sense of their release schedule so they can plan accordingly. Finally, appraisers should talk to their clients so that they understand any deadlines for implementation as well as any special delivery expectations.
BUZZ: Will ACI be providing any UAD training for appraisers?
Opelka: Absolutely. We have an aggressive webinar program that focuses on using UAD in conjunction with the ACI software. The UAD Training Webinar will begin in early June and will run throughout the summer. In addition to getting an in depth look at the software, we’ll also provide an interactive Q&A at the end of each session. We’ve been posting “UAD Tips and Tricks” on the ACI website since early March to introduce appraisers to UAD in small chunks.
Buzz: Is there a cost for the training and where can someone sign up for the webinar?
Opelka: The training is provided at no cost to any ACI customer with an active service agreement. ACI customers will receive invitations via e-mail and can checkAppraisersChoice.com in the next couple of weeks for details on how they can register for the training sessions.
Buzz: Thanks for visiting The Buzz and sharing your comments with our readers.
Opelka: You’re welcome. UAD marks a significant event in our industry and appraisers should take advantage of the information currently available and begin the education process today.