Real estate appraisers are professionals who use their expertise in assessing real estate, and determining its value by employing specific conditions and measuring standards. They are people who were and currently are in great demand due to their unique skills and expertise in the real estate field. Insurance firms, federal agencies, tax assessment companies, real estate agents and firms, lawyers, museums and private collectors are some of the entities, who require the services of these experts.
Appraisers may even provide other services to their clients, such as home buying, home selling, real estate negotiations, etc. Due to the many requirements that lead to property appraisals, appraisers have the option of specializing in diverse fields. If you are planning to become a real estate appraiser, you need to possess a basic understanding of how the real estate and property business works, and what are the various operational aspects.
Types of Real Estate Appraisers
Appraisers are responsible for assessing not only residential property, but also commercial and agricultural holdings. Some people hire or take assistance from a personal property appraiser to evaluate the value of their vehicles, art, jewelry, antique furniture and collections.
The services of business appraisers are utilized in order to assess and determine the value of businesses, and all its assets which most importantly comprises its brand name. A professional from the real estate appraisal field ought to be a good communicator and possess high analytical thinking qualities. He should be capable of drafting concise and lucid reports for his clients.
Becoming a Real Estate Appraiser
As in any other profession, there are certain steps for becoming an appraiser. Licensing is required in most of the cases, particularly for the appraisal to be formally recognized as legal and valid by the federal government or any financial institution. Getting the related certification requires a certain number of hours to be spent in classroom training at a real estate appraisal school, and the capability to get through the real estate exam successfully.
In the USA, prospective appraisers are at least required to possess a bachelor’s degree to be considered eligible for this profession. However, it is possible to become an appraiser even without possessing a bachelor’s degree, provided tantamount college credit hours have been obtained.
There is no particular requirement for the field of study, however, those who plan to take up this as a career option mostly choose subjects like economics, business or finance. These subjects are somehow related to the field of real estate, and serve as a good background that will help in precisely determining market valuations for property.
The needed classroom time may depend upon the state and region of residency. In some states, there is a possibility of deputizing the need of classroom time for an equivalent correspondence or online degree programs. However, the course needs to be recognized by the ‘board in charge’ of certifying real estate appraisers in a particular area.
The course generally includes topics on real estate law, local federal aspects, related ethics, and some other factors regarding the real estate industry. After the completion of the course, the next step is taking the appraisal exam. Generally, taking the exam is easier for individuals who have gained significant knowledge in the course.
The exam is normally held at particular times in a year, or may be administered on demand, depending on the state. If you need more information regarding the exam and other requirements, you need to inquire with the regional real estate licensing board.
After the completion of all requirements, you need to complete the paperwork which includes an application form. In some cases, you would also be required to pass through a criminal background check. While dealing with paperwork, ensure that you include all information regarding test results, real estate course certificate, and other related documents.
The earnings of real estate appraisers largely depend upon the clients, expertise, experience, specialty, market reputation, and the level of professionalism. The annual earnings may range from $30,000 to even $300,000.