*Appraisal Heavyweights Join Forces*
**By Tony Garritano**
***I certainly expect to see a lot of consolidation this year. The big will get bigger for sure. To this end, I just learned this morning that Solidifi and Kirchmeyer, two leading independent real estate appraisal management companies, have joined forces in a deal that will see Solidifi become the third largest independent provider of residential real estate appraisals in the country. Here’s the scoop:
****“Following a $22 million financing in 2012, Solidifi is in growth mode and Kirchmeyer is an important part of our overall growth strategy. It is the ideal fit for Solidifi,” says Jason Smith, Solidifi’s President and CEO.
****Solidifi is doing its part to help evolve the appraisal management business through its technology and analytics platform. In effect, it is using technology to build efficiency throughout the appraisal process, increase quality, drive costs out and improve the client experience. Solidifi’s technology identifies the right appraiser for each assignment who will deliver high-quality comprehensive appraisals to the lender.
****“Solidifi’s technology and broad appraiser network will complement our own network and I and my team are excited to continue to service our current and future customers with these extended capabilities,” says James Kirchmeyer, CEO of Kirchmeyer & Associates.
****It’s a winning value proposition all around, according to Solidifi. The company notes that the appraisers at Kirchmeyer are top of their field and are highly compensated for their efforts. The lender receives the right information the first time with no additional costs because the system is streamlined and designed to drive performance. The lender also benefits from Solidifi’s and Kirchmeyer’s focus on being the best provider of real estate appraisals in the market. Both companies exclusively provide real estate valuations.
****“I have worked with both firms and know firsthand that Solidifi and Kirchmeyer value high-quality appraisers,” says Kevin Wang from AccuFast Appraisal Services. “The platform and model works. It helps make me successful as an appraiser and ensures the lenders get what they need when they need it.”
****Solidifi and Kirchmeyer are a cultural match. Both firms value quality, strong appraiser partnerships and exceptional customer service. Existing and new clients will benefit from a stronger, larger team of mortgage industry specialists known for outstanding relationships with lenders and appraisers.
****“With our shared philosophy of assigning every order to the most competent appraiser to ensure delivery of a top quality report, the combined companies will continue to raise the bar in terms of service, quality and professionalism,” says Andrew Bough, Solidifi’s Chief Valuations Officer. Solidifi’s elite network of appraisers in every county nationwide will complement the Kirchmeyer panel.
****Solidifi has invested more than $25 million to date in its technology platform, which will further enhance appraisal performance for Kirchmeyer customers. The Solidifi cloud-based technology provides customers with a flexible and scalable appraisal management solution with the highest standards in data security and reliability including redundant servers in SAE16 certified data centers in Dallas, TX and Washington, DC.
****Moving forward the combined entity will operate under the Solidifi name.
Tony Garritano is chairman and founder at PROGRESS in Lending Association. As a speaker Tony has worked hard to inform executives about how technology should be a tool used to further business objectives. For over 10 years he has worked as a journalist, researcher and speaker in the mortgage technology space. Starting this association was the next step for someone like Tony, who has dedicated his career to providing mortgage executives with the information needed to make informed technology decisions. He can be reached via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.