TrendSheet 4 Update: New dynamic commentary and expanded MLS coverage

November 24, 2015  |  Guest Author

This is a guest post from Brandon Reich, an active real estate appraiser, owner of Choice Valuation, PLLC and creator of TrendSheet 4 and Spark, an MLS comp import tool.  You can find TrendSheet 4 and Spark in the TOTAL Store.

We've recently added some great new features to TrendSheet 4, our market analysis, sales grid analysis, and automation tool.  It now includes dynamic commentary, meaning it can populate your 1004MC comments based on market data, in addition to auto-populating your 1004MC numbers, top of Page 2 numbers, and some Page 1 numbers.  And, since TrendSheet 4 is unlocked, you can also add your own formulas and features in addition to customizing these comments to suit your preferences.

We also updated the coverage area, so now TrendSheet 4 works in over 75 MLS systems nationwide.

Plus, now that we’ve released Spark, our Comp Importer, you can use both programs in your report to not only support your opinions and conclusions with a ton of helpful market data (including multiple adjustment indicators) but save yourself all the time and hassle of typing up your comps and 1004MC.  Here's a message I received from an appraiser:

It’s like going from a reel tape measure to a laser measuring device…I’ve been using TrendSheet and Spark for the past couple months and there’s nothing like having your 1004MC mostly filled out, two years of data and graphs for review, and having 12 comps mostly imported all within minutes.”

TOTAL update: Easily apply another user’s signature and improvements to your contacts

November 17, 2015  |  Filip Koutzev

A new update is ready for you.  To download this update, and any prior updates you may have missed, just click Help (with TOTAL open), and then click Check for Updates.

In this update, we've added the ability to easily sign the report as another user.  While before you had to completely sign out of TOTAL and sign in as the new user in order to apply a new signature, now you can simply select the user from a dropdown when signing.  You'll then be prompted for that user's password.  It's great for multi-appraiser offices and trainees.


Improvements to your support experience

November 16, 2015  |  Austin Nunn

Based on your feedback, we’ve recently made a lot changes to our support architecture. Here’s a short list of the things we’ve accomplished since August, and what benefits they have for you.

Less waiting, more helping.

At the beginning of August, we phased out the “Customer Service Rep” (CSR) tier.  The CSRs were introduced around the time of UAD to help you get quick answers to the most common questions we hear.  While this worked great for a time, once you got familiar with UAD, you were less likely to call in with common questions.  This meant you needed more in-depth tech support and could be put on hold. So, our CSRs have transitioned into full technicians.  When you call, you immediately get someone who can handle any situation, instead of getting passed from one person to the next.  In fact, since removing the CSR line, the average hold time to reach a technician has decreased by 68%.

Feeling overworked?  10 signs it’s time to switch to TOTAL

November 13, 2015  |  Ellana Walker

Feeling over-worked - 10 signs it's time you should switch to TOTAL

Appraising in 2015 wasn’t easy.  You handled more client requirements and curveballs like CU and FHA changes.  But if you spent it relying on ACI or ClickFORMS™, your job was even harder than it should have been.  

Based on what we're hearing, we've put together these nine signs you need to switch during the slower holiday season:

  1. You've been working too much. 

Why we’re not participating in The Appraisal Foundation’s software initiative

November 13, 2015  |  Ellana Walker

Appraisers have asked us why we're not included in The Appraisal Foundation's new software program.  (Click here for the announcement.)  Here's our response from our Chairman, Dave Biggers:

After seeing the details of The Appraisal Foundation proposal, we actively and unequivocally chose not to participate.  Unfortunately, we weren’t allowed to even see the details until we signed a non-disclosure agreement, which even forbid us from telling you that the AF proposal even existed.  Now that the AF has gone public, we can at least confirm that their initiative exists, and that we opted out for good reason.  

However, that non-disclosure agreement still prevents us from telling you about the many details in the AF’s proposal which caused us to choose not to even take the first steps of participation — and we strongly believe that the devil is always in the details.  

If you’ll recall, another pseudo-governmental program — a little thing called HVCC — was hailed by many appraisers initially (and certainly by the committees and lawyers who created it), but then roundly criticized when the details became clear.  The HVCC was a disaster largely because it was the wrong solution to a real problem, and the details had the opposite of the intended effect.  

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