Industry NewsMortgage

Mortgage bankers find fault with appraisal rules

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The Mortgage Bankers Association is calling on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to back out of agreements with New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo that would create a code of conduct for home appraisals. The agreements, also signed by federal regulators that oversee the government-sponsored enterprises, were intended to insulate appraisers from pressure to inflate home valuations. But by barring lenders from relying on in-house appraisals or those performed by affiliated businesses, the code of conduct would actually reduce oversight and accountability for much of the appraisal industry, the MBA argues. Furthermore, the industry and public had no opportunity to comment on the agreements with Fannie and Freddie or the code of conduct before they were announced on March 3, the trade association said. After the agreements were announced, Fannie and Freddie said they would take public comments until April 30. With a compliance date of Jan. 1, 2009, only eight months away, the M...