Residential Funding Corp., Minneapolis, has announced the introduction of a new automated valuation model platform that it says will reduce costs and streamline the underwriting process for mortgage lenders and homeowners.GMAC-RFC said the new AVM platform enables it to obtain more accurate automated valuations from more geographic areas. The company said it will use the platform "to provide lenders and brokers more options to close loans without the need for a full appraisal on a higher percentage of transactions." The integration of the new AVM platform into the company's Assetwise automated loan evaluation tool enables GMAC-RFC "to choose the best AVM result available, based on such parameters as geography, estimated value, and loan amounts," the company said. Dan Bettenburg, GMAC-RFC's executive vice president for e-commerce, said the company's research indicates that "to provide cutting-edge appraisal alternatives that will have an impact similar to automated credit evaluations, it's necessary to use several different AVMs, where each provides the most value based on their respective strengths." GMAC-RFC said it has partnered with First American Real Estate Solutions to build the new platform, which will incorporate AVMs from Basis100, First American, and Veros. The companies can be found online at http://www.gmacrfc.com, http://www.firstamres.com, http://www.basis100.com, and http://www.verovalue.com.

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