AXIS COVID-19 Response Plan
AXIS has set forth a response plan to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on our valued customers, appraisers, and staff. The velocity of changes related to COVID‐19 continue to accelerate, and AXIS will take additional measures as further directives from the appropriate authorities are issued. Please review the highlights of our response plan below. The situation is fluid and this page will be updated as circumstances continue to unfold.
Business Continuity Considerations
While many businesses are impacted by stay at home orders, you can rest assured that AXIS is still operational as we provide essential services to lenders and are exempted from those orders. Here are some highlights of what we are doing to ensure we continue to support your needs:
- AXIS has policies and procedures in place that outline how to successfully maintain business operations in an event of a pandemic.
- We have instituted protocols that allow for employees to work remotely as jurisdictions, authorities and health circumstances dictate.
- We have failover systems to ensure our technologies, phone lines, and emails remain active
For our valued lender clients, please be aware of the following:
- Between order volume and COVID-19 mitigation, we are seeing deep impacts in turn times and fees in many markets. Please closely monitor order messages for communication from your AXIS service team. Quick responses from you can save significant time in placement and in securing the best possible due date.
- Please contact your borrower before the appraiser schedules the inspection appointment to determine that no one in the household has knowingly been exposed to COVID 19 nor is anyone in the house currently sick. Explain to your borrower that during this time period, the appraiser will be changing typical inspection protocols to minimize risk.
- With new Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac guidelines as well as some portfolio lenders allowing exterior inspections only, it is important that you communicate with us when that option is available for your particular order.
- We will be sending out periodic emails to our customer base with additional updates
Safety for appraisers who are still conducting business is our chief concern. As lenders are able to grant greater flexibility in products, we will communicate that to our panel. AXIS has delivered the following communication to our appraisal vendors and expects adherence to minimize risk:
- The lender will be asked to contact the borrower and/or homeowner before the appraiser scheduling the inspection appointment to determine that no one in the household has knowingly been exposed to COVID 19 nor is anyone in the house currently sick.
- The lender will also explain that during this time period, inspection protocols have been modified and review this protocol.
- When calling to set up inspection, the appraiser will re-confirm that there has been no change in the health of the occupant (or person providing access to the property) Confirmation must be documented within the order.
- The appraiser will request that all lights are on and doors open prior to inspection time.
- To minimize face to face interaction, the appraiser will conduct a phone interview and/or follow-up email questionnaire with the inspection contact prior to visiting the site. Appraisers may request a list of improvements that homeowners have made to their home, the plat survey, and/or tax bill if available. These documents provide support for legal descriptions, dimensions, easements, and measurements included in the appraisal report.
- The homeowner will, if present, maintain social distancing and wear a mask while the inspection takes place.
- The appraiser will wear available PPE – Personal Protective Equipment while inspecting the home and not touch any surfaces, door handles or light switches.
- Although the CDC has not published protocols outside healthcare settings, a baseline of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) used during inspections must include masks, and may also include gloves, eye protection, hygienic shoe covers, and a supply of hand sanitizer.
- Any questions or concerns at a property, simply stop and call AXIS.
Read about appraiser's and client's experiences out in the field here
AXIS has consolidated helpful resources here
Archived Press Releases and Communication
Review prior Lender and Appraiser communications from AXIS here
Regional Guidance and Safety Directives
AXIS remains in compliance with the directives established by authorities across individual markets. This information is in constant flux, please stay current with your community’s health orders and if you have questions about them, please contact AXIS. In 99% of the health orders we have reviewed, appraisers have been exempted as essential workers.