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Fighting to Keep Your Reputation

Jonathan Miller shares a story in his blog about how important it is to maintain your reputation as an appraiser. Recently, a local NYC blog misquoted Miller and claimed he offered a property value to a reporter. Upset, Miller responded to the blogger sharply:

I do not give reporters prices of apartments or someone who calls me. EVER!…You are clearly saying I am telling someone how much a specific apartment is worth and that is against my state certification indicating I break the law to people in my appraisal circles. It takes one crackpot to file a complaint…

Miller than goes on to explain how several years ago he got into a little mess with the Appraisal Institute, due to some online directory claiming he held an MAI:

It was simply a mistake on the appraisal directory web site’s part. I sent repeated requests to the site to take it down or change the text but got no response. Then some anonymous (wacko) submitted a complaint to the Appraisal Institute (had to be an appraiser) and I got a terse form letter from the chair of “Ethics Administration.”

Gotta love our profession – like field reviews – many of us are dying to stick it to our colleagues. In other words, I was assumed “guilty until proven innocent.” I called AI and they were actually pretty nice about it. I had to send them a letter explaining my situation and all was fine again.

If appraisers worked as hard at fighting appraisal pressure as they do at filing complaints against each-other, I think they could go a long way toward promoting independence within the profession.

-Justin Morton, Manager of Appraisal Specialties

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