Creating a sample report in TOTAL

This document explains how to create a redacted sample report in TOTAL using SmartMerge and/or field formatting.

Document 6582  |  Last updated:  02/15/2017 SPB

There are a number of reasons to create a sample report: as part of a resume for a new lender, as a sample of your work for clients, or as a training aid for a trainee. However, using an existing appraisal report poses serious concerns about confidentiality and protecting private data.

USPAP's Confidentiality Rule provides specific guidelines for what can be legally disclosed in redacted appraisals. This document isn't intended to cover those guidelines, only to provide simple guidance for removing proprietary information from an existing report. It's your responsibility to ensure that you're compliant with all applicable federal and local regulations and with USPAP guidelines when creating a sample report.

When approaching the topic of sharing an example of your work with a new client, we always recommend using a completely fictional report. This bypasses any concern for confidentiality by the appraiser. If you do plan to modify an existing report, it's important to identify and remove any non-public information ("NPI") in the report. An example of NPI data would be:

  • Client Name
  • Borrower Name

This isn't a definitive list, and we strongly recommended you contact your board or refer to USPAP for additional details. For more information on NPI, please refer to our Gramm‑Leach‑Bliley compliance document.

Use SmartMerge to redact a report

Perhaps the easiest means to create a redacted report is by merging existing report data into a new report. This leaves your original report unaltered and creates an exact duplicate for you to modify.

Click here for detailed step‑by‑step instructions on using SmartMerge.

To create a duplicate report using SmartMerge:

  1. Open TOTAL and click New to create a new report.
  2. Select Merge Screen and click OK.
  3. In SmartMerge, choose your preferred options.
  4. Click Merge.
  5. Once the merge is finished, smiply delete the data from each field containing confidential information.
    Place your cursor in a field and press CTRL+K to quickly clear the field of any data.

That's it!  Simply sign your report and your sample report is ready to be printed.

Use field formatting to redact a report

Another way to redact your report is to use field formatting to make certain fields blank when printed. This is a more complex and time-consuming method, but it's a good alternative if you don't want to create a duplicate report.

Field formatting cannot be modified in a signed report. To redact information from your report using field formatting, you must first remove the signature.

To use field formatting to redact a report:

  1. Open your existing report.
  2. Locate a field that needs to be redacted.
  3. Right click the field and select Format Field.
  4. In the window that appears, check the box next to Non‑Printing and click OK.
  5. Repeat this for each field where you need to redact data.

That's it!  While the report still displays the data in TOTAL, the formatted fields are blank when printed to PDF. Simply sign and print your report to PDF, and your sample report is complete.

To remove the non‑printing attribute from all fields: click Forms, hover over Default Field Formats, and select Restore Standard Default Format. This quickly restores the default formatting for all fields and allows the report to be printed normally.

Click here for more information about field formatting — including saving and loading formats and restoring default formats.

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