I have had five transactions thus far this year where this dynamic seems to be at play….
Loan Process
The diagrams above are not showing the new reality for all lenders — it is just a reflection of my experience with many lenders recently.

For whatever reason, (many) lenders (on many transactions) seem to be waiting to order an appraisal until they have completely finalized the approval of the borrower.

This is problematic for several reasons:

  • Sure, if a borrower can’t be approved the deal won’t close, but if the appraisal is not satisfactory, the deal also won’t close.  Why, then, must we wait so long to order the appraisal?
  • Sometimes the final approval of the borrower can drag on (and on and on) — which delays (and delays and delays) the ordering of and completion of the appraisal.

If you’re buying a house, make sure your lender orders your appraisal as soon as you have made loan application — especially since the fee that you pay at application is at least partially for the appraisal.

If you’re selling a house, don’t assume that the appraisal has been ordered as soon as the buyer makes loan application.  Follow up and make sure that the appraisal is ordered ASAP.

If any lenders can explain why this is happening, or provide any good reasons for it happening this way, I’m all ears.