Research from Freddie Mac shows that between 2010-2019 rural purchases were up 3%, suburban area home purchases were up 2% and home purchases in urban areas were down 5%. The growing trend of consumers moving out of cities and into rural and suburban areas was accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic as individuals and families looked for more space to allow for distancing, remote work and remote learning.
Freddie Mac goes on to say, “This movement to rural areas within metro areas suggests that while people may be leaving cities, they are not moving too far away from city living. And if this trend continues, it could mean a higher share of home purchases in rural areas within the Metro areas over the next few years. Even as the share of rural areas within Metros is increasing, we find that the share of rural areas in Non-Metros is still the highest.”
Couple the shift to purchase homes in rural and suburban areas with one of the hottest housing markets in decades, and banks, mortgage lenders, loan servicers and credit unions are struggling to keep up with the pace of demand and offer competitive property valuations in markets they scarcely or rarely support. Consumers living in urban areas who are exploring moving out of cities and into rural communities would like to continue working with the lender they trust; however, are they equipped to handle the change? Not only are borrowers considering a major shift in where they live, they’re considering a major change in the lender they select. Plus, lenders located in these areas already have established relationships with appraisers with deep knowledge of the location – an advantage they are leveraging to gain market share.
How equipped are your appraisal management processes to handle the urban exodus?
Rather than risk losing consumers, strategic lenders have begun evaluating their appraisal management processes and technologies to find ways to support not only the urban exodus trend, but also future market shifts in consumer demand. Why? Because a comprehensive appraisal management technology platform can enable lenders to more efficiently and effectively manage the full lifecycle of an order – including appraisal order requests, appraisal reviews, appraisal delivery and appraisal order status monitoring nationwide. Innovative, configurable appraiser scoring and assignment capabilities quickly identify the best available, best fit appraiser for each appraisal order in rural and suburban areas – with little to no manual effort. Lenders using an appraisal management system are not scrambling to fulfill order requests in markets they don’t traditionally support – instead they are able to seamlessly respond and grow market share in new territories.
An appraisal management technology platform can automatically select the right appraiser for each appraisal based on geography, loan type, certifications and availability. Quickly selecting an appraiser based on location and availability offers lenders a significant competitive advantage over lenders not leveraging technology and improves the consumer experience.
An appraisal management technology platform also ensures all required appraiser licenses and E&Os are kept up-to-date and compliant with current local and federal laws, which is a significant advantage when entering new markets. There are also other advantages of this technology, for example the ability to receive, track, manage and pay appraisal invoices in one system, with approval processes and audit controls configured based on your unique business needs.
Why miss out on opportunities in rural and suburban areas when you can partner with an appraisal management technology vendor who can fuel your expansion into new markets?
Take advantage of the latest appraisal management technology platform on the market today to deliver a better borrower experience while also improving efficiency, driving innovation and gaining market share.
If you’re just starting the journey to selecting the right appraisal management technology platform, download our guide, “Choosing the Right Appraisal Management Platform,” which offers insights on the core technology features you should look for and tips for evaluating and selecting the right vendor.
Contact AppraisalWorks at or call us at 1-216-487-6800 to speak with an expert today.