- Miller Samuel Real Estate Appraisers & Consultants - https://www.millersamuel.com -

Mortgage Fraud: Hiding True Occupant Of Apartment From Lender [part 6 of a series]

Today our firm got a call from a major national lender and was asked to change the occupant noted on the appraisal from tenant to owner. It wouldn’t fit the loan package they had arranged for. This particular national lender makes requests like this all the time.

The people making the request are usually clerical and have no idea what they are really asking from us. We get the impression that appraisers usually comply with these sort of requests in hopes of maintaining the relationship.

The client pressed hard for us (politely) to change the occupant information, even when we clearly explained why we couldn’t and that what we were being asked to do was fraudulent.

For this assignment, the tenant’s lease expired in 2 months. We gave the lender 2 options:

1: We change nothing in the report
2: We make the effective date for two months from now when the lease expires, disclosing that we inspected it two months prior and that the unit was occupied by a tenant with the terms of the lease disclosed, that the condition was unchanged between the effective date and the inspection date, all as a extraordinary assumption. (phew!)

They called back an hour later and chose selection 2.

Just another day…

Hello out there…where are the bank regulators?