TriStar Bank is denied bid for temporary waiver on appraisals, FFIEC panel reports

The federal panel responsible for oversight of state appraisal regulatory programs denied a request by TriStar Bank, Dickson, Tenn., for a one-year waiver from a requirement to use certified appraisers for real estate-related loans in the Nashville, Tenn., area.

The bank submitted its initial request to the Appraisal Subcommittee (ASC) of the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) last November. The panel wrote back pointing out the requirements for a “completed” request, and TriStar responded in January. The bank cited a shortage of appraisers in the area that had led to delays in processing and added costs for its clients. Most commenters opposed the request, and Tennessee’s appraiser commission refuted the claim of an appraiser shortage.

As required, the ASC published TriStar’s request for notice and comment via the Federal Register. Most of the 166 comments letters sent in – from appraiser groups and related entities – opposed granting TriStar Bank’s request for waiver. The comment letters came from state appraiser certifying and licensing agencies, appraiser and real estate trade associations, professional associations, appraisal management companies (AMCs), appraisal firms and appraisers.

“Several appraisers credentialed in Tennessee responded to the ASC’s request for comments by stating they have contacted TriStar offering to perform appraisals for the bank, but have not been assigned any appraisals or evaluations to date,” the panel said in a notice scheduled for publication in the Register Thursday. Some commenters didn’t oppose or support the request, it said, but they urged caution if the ASC chose to provide relief.

The Tennessee Real Estate Appraiser Commission (TN REAC), in its letter, stated that it “disagrees that there is a shortage of appraisers in … cited counties,” the panel reports. It said the commission provided data showing that 174 certified general appraisers and 491 total credentialed appraisers are available in the four counties and the “directly surrounding area,” and it said that information is supported by the national registry of appraisers.

The ASC met and voted to deny the waiver request April 23.

Final Order Denying Temporary Waiver Relief