Monday, January 19, 2015

What Is a Property Appraiser?

As previously Published by Alison Shuman  On September 08, 2014 
Property appraisers are generally referred to as Real Estate Appraisers. This is a category of real estate professional that determines the value of real estate. This is a heavily-regulated industry, with oversight at both the state and federal level.
Different Types of Property Appraisers
Three types of appraisers are recognized:
·                 General
·                 Certified Residential
·                 Licensed

General appraisers can appraise any and all types of property, and are most likely to work on commercial valuations. Licensed appraisers have the lowest-level licensing status and have less formal training than either General or Certified Residential appraisers. Licensed appraisers have more restrictions on the types of property they can value, and fewer and fewer lenders will engage appraisers at this licensing level for service.
The typical appraiser engaged by a lender to value property for a real estate transaction is Certified Residential.

Appraiser Licensing
Real Estate Appraisers are licensed by individual states, with federal oversight by the Appraisal Subcommittee (ASC). Eligible appraisers are listed on the National Registry which is a database maintained by the Appraiser Qualifications Board (AQB) containing the names and licensing status of State Licensed, State Certified Residential and State Certified General Appraisers who are eligible to perform appraisals in connection with federally-related transactions.
In order to become a licensed property appraiser, individuals must meet a strict set of criteria which includes classroom education and on-the-job training as a trainee.
Appraiser Training
Before a trainee can be sponsored by a more experienced appraiser, he or she needs to first complete classroom-based training (or online training) that covers:
·                 Basic Appraisal Principles (30 hours)
·                 Basic Appraisal Procedures (30 hours)
·                 15-Hour national USPAP or Equivalent (15 hours)
In addition to classroom-based training, new appraisers are trained in the field by more experienced appraisers that hold a licensing level of Certified Residential or General.
In-the-field training of 2000 hours over 12 or more months is required before being licensed. In-the-field training of 2500 hours over 24 or more months is required before becoming a Certified Residential Appraiser.
Once the training has been completed, the applicant must sit for a long and comprehensive exam as well as undergo an oral exam. Each state maintains a website with information about licensing requirements, training requirements and exam information.

In-the-field Training
Appraiser trainees go out in the field with their sponsors. This means they visit property to be valued and perform certain tasks, including:
·                 Measuring the dwelling and any outbuildings
·                 Making a diagram of the measurements of the building(s)
·                 Taking photographs inside and out
·                 Evaluating the condition and the quality of the improvements
·                 Evaluating any external influences that may affect value (train tracks, power lines, commercial property, busy roads)
·                 Evaluating the neighborhood

In-the-office Training
In addition to going out to visit individual properties, appraiser trainees perform additional tasks to assist their sponsor (supervising appraiser) with valuing property:
·                 Pulling aerial maps
·                 Reading flood maps
·                 Looking up zoning information
·                 Looking up ownership information
·                 Researching transaction histories
·                 Determining market characteristics (increasing, decreasing)
·                 Entering data into the report
·                 All of these tasks are part of learning to become a licensed property appraiser.
Why So Much Work?

Property appraisers go through a lot of training to make sure that when they become licensed, they have the knowledge and skills to properly evaluate the value of real estate.

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