Can someone please explain desk reviews? - Posted by Mike

Posted by Alex Gurevich, TX on November 02, 1998 at 21:50:24:

well, that wonderful process brings about interesting implications, that I was just a part of, when my L/O buyer went to get his financing.

The house was sold as a “fixer-upper” in “as is” condition. The buyer was supposed to fix it up before getting financing. Buyer did not do anything to the house which looked even worse than when I sold it to him.

1)the mtg co. sent regular appraiser who appraised it at $45K citing poor condition. (The contract sales price was $56K.)
2)Mtg broker said, I’ll use a different underwriter who’ll accept an in-desk review and sent another appraiser for a “driver-by” appraisal. The drive-by came in at $63K.
3)We happily closed.

Conclusion. As long as this program exists one can sell a house that potentially has foundation problems (which may need tens of thousands in work) and a buyer can get conventional financing with 3% down.

All so amazingly true as long as:

  1. buyer sees a benefit of buying a house in this condtion (let’s offer him $25% discount on the price; of course we’d pay no more than 50% of value for a house with cracked slab)
  2. buyer can qualify for a loan.
  3. appraiser does not need to go inside.

Never heard of this before but it’s there now. Let’s use it while it lasts !!

Can someone please explain desk reviews? - Posted by Mike

Posted by Mike on November 01, 1998 at 14:13:17:


Is there anyone out there that can explain what actually happens when a lender has an appraisor do a desk review? I’m trying to refinance a property I now own and the mortgage broker told me the lender is waiting to get the desk review back. Is it standard practice to do a review on all appraisals or just from appraisors not on the lender’s list?


Re: Can someone please explain desk reviews? - Posted by Randy -IL-

Posted by Randy -IL- on November 03, 1998 at 12:00:50:

A desk review is commonly used to verify the information in an appraisal and the techniques and conclusions for accuracy. The reviewer is commonly a licensed or certified appraiser somewhat familiar with the subject area. The reviewer commonly does not visit the properties, although for accuracy reasons some do partial inspections of the subject and comps.
When I do a review, I at least drive-by the subject and comps. A reviewer may agree or disagree with the original appraisal. It depends on the lender for what the review will be used. If fraud is found, the reviewer is bound by USPAP to report it to proper authorities.

A lender can get a review on any appraisal they wish. Their purposes for getting a review vary greatly. I’ve heard of reviews used from trashing the credibility of the appraiser to forcing a loan through to even stalling or denying the loan.

Just an appraisers opinion,


Re: Can someone please explain desk reviews? - Posted by Ed Garcia

Posted by Ed Garcia on November 02, 1998 at 09:38:51:

What a desk review normally consistent of, is.
The appraiser reviews and inspects the appraisal. The appraiser also
revivifies the comparable sales independently.
The appraiser usually never goes to inspect the property.
That?s why they call it a desk review.

Ed Garcia