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Sunday, October 20, 2013

What exactly is twisting? Twisting occurs when an insurance agent or broker convinces someone to switch insurance coverage under false pretenses. Most states have laws or regulations that include language like this:

Monday, October 14, 2013

Part of the Dodd-Frank Act, officially the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, passed in 2010 required the Appraisal Subcomittee (ASC) to create a complaint hotline. The Appraisal Complaint National Hotline will allow lenders, homebuyers, and appraisers themselves to report complaints about alleged non-compliance with USPAP and/or appraisal independence requirements.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

As a risk management firm which has been serving real estate appraisers for over 20 years, we are in a relatively unique position in terms of offering suggestions how to improve the current residential real estate appraisal process. To offer some perspective, during our history we have had close to 20,000 appraisers as members of our risk management family and we have been actively involved in the resolution of close to 2000 claims brought against appraisers, both inside and outside of the courtroom. Furthermore, our management team has been around long enough to witness not only the most recent collapse of the real estate market, but also the all of the previous collapses dating back to the 1970’s.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

As an Inspector, you know one of the most important structural components of a home is the roof. Naturally, evaluating a roof’s condition is a critical step of your inspection process, however it’s also reportedly the number one complaint of homeowners who claim that a mistake was made during their home’s inspection.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Increasing demands by clients on appraisers is not news. The quality of work and the quick turn-around is a must. Appraisers who are diligent and thorough still spend 8 hours or the time necessary to complete an appraisal and feel confident about their work in the report being submitted. AMCs are held to stricter review guidelines as well, so the appraisal submission should be professional and seamless.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Here at FREA and ALIA, we believe in good and fair competition. We are well aware that we compete with many other companies to earn your business – and that we have to work very hard to keep it. So, we were surprised to learn recently that one of our competitors has been making false statements about our family of companies, saying that FREA is closing its doors and that ALIA’s prices for E&O coverage are inflated.

These suggestions are false. In fact, nothing could be further from the truth. Not only are we here to stay, we are stronger than we’ve ever been before. In the past six months, we moved into new office...

Thursday, August 15, 2013

In states such as California, it is well settled that real property owned by the government is exempt from taxation. See, e.g., Cal. Const., art. III, §3. What happens, though, when states lease public lands to private persons? One would assume (correctly) that such private possessory interests are taxed, but how and, more specifically, on what appraised basis? The recent appellate decision in Cal. State Teacher’s Ret. Sys. v. County of Los Angeles (2013) 216 Cal.App.4th 41 addresses these questions, particularly in the light of appraisals of private possessory interests on public land.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

It’s that time of year again when Uncle Sam comes knocking (not-so-patiently) at your door. When it comes to business taxes, the name of the game is to maximize the value of the write offs you can legitimately take in order to minimize your taxable profits.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Every day we all engage in some form of marketing. For those in a service industry, the product being marketed is really you, the service provider, and this is especially true if you are running a small business or are a sole proprietor. So, the question really is how you can promote you more effectively. Here are a few simple tips which will help you get more business and make more money.

Monday, July 1, 2013

From the first moment we start getting interested in driving all we hear from everyone around us is how important it is to drive defensively.

Auto insurers run entire ad campaigns based on defensive driving. Parents repeat it every time they hand over the keys. Driving instructors insist on it. Even passengers try to help by pointing out you are too close to the curb, too close to the car next to you, or too close to whatever other possible risk exists on the road.