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An appraiser specializes in a certain type of property. Your job includes engaging in researching the property market in a local area, examining key features of a property, and evaluating properties to establish their market value.

As an appraiser, staying up-to-date on properties with best practices regulations, producing a written report to better explain decisions and assessment results are all part of your jurisdiction. Site visiting mainly to inspect properties, interview clients, examine all variables to ensure they are in good condition is what you must do. As an appraiser examining and assessing property, you must take photographs of both the interior and exterior of the building and pay attention to the features that might destroy the entire property.

In real estate involvement, you are expected to verify legal documents of public records and maintain the value data to compare new properties to others in the market. Basic skill requirements necessary include communication skills, analytical and critical thinking, mathematics, excellent customer service skills, time management, and organizational skills. The average salary of an appraiser is $97,000 annually, and the educational requirement is a bachelor's degree in Finance, Economics or, other related fields.

What Does an Appraiser Do

Appraisers and assessors of real estate provide an estimate of the value of land and the buildings on the land usually before it is sold, mortgaged, taxed, insured, or developed.

Learn more about what an Appraiser does

How To Become an Appraiser

The requirements to become a fully qualified appraiser or assessor of real estate are complex and vary by state and, sometimes, by the value or type of property. Most appraisers of residential or commercial property must have at least a bachelor’s degree to obtain the entry-level state license category. Check with your state's licensing board for specific requirements for both assessors and appraisers.

Education

Although requirements may vary by state, appraisers of residential or commercial property usually must have at least a bachelor’s degree.

College courses in subjects such as economics, finance, mathematics, computer science, English, and business or real estate law can be useful for prospective appraisers and assessors.

Most states set education and experience requirements that assessors must meet in order to practice. A few states have no statewide requirements; instead, each locality sets the standards. In some localities, candidates may qualify with a high school diploma.

Training

Employers generally require candidates to take basic appraisal courses, complete long-term on-the-job training, and work enough hours to meet the requirements for licenses or certificates. 

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Federal law requires appraisers to have a state license or certification when working on federally related transactions, such as appraisals for loans made by federally insured banks and financial institutions. The Appraisal Foundation (TAF) offers information on appraisal licensing. There is no such federal requirement for assessors, although some states require certification. For state specific requirements, applicants should contact their state board.

Real property appraisers usually value one property at a time, while assessors value many at once, but both occupations use similar methods and techniques. As a result, assessors and appraisers tend to take the same courses for certification. In addition to passing a statewide examination, candidates must usually complete a set number of on-the-job hours.

The credential level determines what type of property a person may appraise. The four federal appraiser classifications are as follows:

    • Licensed Trainee Real Property Appraiser

    • Licensed Residential Real Property Appraiser

    • Certified Residential Real Property Appraiser

    • Certified General Real Property Appraiser

Many states offer a Licensed Trainee Real Property Appraiser credential to candidates working toward licensure or certification. Training programs vary by state, but they usually require candidates to take at least 75 hours of specified appraiser education before applying for a job as a trainee.

Many states offer the Licensed Residential Real Property Appraiser. With this license, a qualified person may appraise noncomplex one-to-four unit residences with a value of less than $1 million and complex one-to-four unit residences with a value of less than $250,000. A candidate must have the following qualifications to get this certificate:

    • 30 semester hours of college-level education

    • 150 hours of appraiser-qualifying education

    • 2,000 hours of on-the-job training completed over at least 1 year

Being a Certified Residential Real Property Appraiser is the minimum requirement to appraise a residential property with a loan amount over $250,000 or any other type of residential property even if the loan amount is less than $250,000. A candidate must have the following qualifications to get this certificate:

    • Bachelor’s degree

    • 200 hours of appraiser-specific qualifying education

    • 2,500 hours of work experience completed over at least 2 years

Being a Certified General Real Property Appraiser permits a person to appraise real property of any type and any value. A candidate must have the following qualifications to get this certificate:

    • Bachelor’s degree 

    • 300 hours of appraiser-specific qualifying education

    • 3,000 hours of work experience completed over at least 2½ years

For all of these credentials, except the Trainee License credential, candidates must have the following qualifications:

    • Have 15 hours of classroom instruction on the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice

    • Pass an exam

Unlike appraisers, assessors have no federal requirement for certification. In states that mandate certification for assessors, the requirements are usually similar to those for appraisers. For example, the International Association of Assessing Officers (IAAO) offers the Certified Assessment Evaluator (CAE). This designation covers topics that include property valuation for tax purposes, property tax administration, and property tax policy. Applicants are required to have a bachelor's degree prior to obtaining the designation.

For those states that do not require certification for assessors, the hiring office usually requires the candidate to take basic appraisal courses, complete on-the-job training, and meet the work-hours requirements for appraisal licenses or certificates. Many assessors also have a state appraiser license or credential.

Assessors tend to start working in an assessor's office that provides on-the-job training; smaller municipalities are often unable to provide this work experience. An alternate source of experience for aspiring assessors is through a revaluation firm.

Both appraisers and assessors must take continuing education courses to keep the license or certification. Exact requirements vary by state and certification.

Important Qualities

Analytical skills. Appraisers and assessors of real estate use many sources of data when valuing a property. As a result, they must carefully research and analyze all factors before estimating a value and producing a final written report.

Customer-service skills. Because appraisers must regularly interact with clients, being polite and friendly is important. In addition, these characteristics may help expand future business opportunities.

Math skills. Accurately analyzing real estate data includes such steps as calculating square footage of land and building space, so workers must have good math skills.

Organizational skills. To successfully accomplish all the tasks related to appraising and assessing a property, appraisers and assessors of real estate need good organizational skills.

Problem-solving skills. Appraising or assessing a property's value may involve unexpected problems. The ability to develop and apply an alternative solution is crucial to successfully completing the appraisal and report on time.

Time-management skills. Appraisers and assessors of real estate often work under time constraints, sometimes appraising many properties in a single day. As a result, managing time and meeting deadlines are important.

Appraiser Career Paths

Average Salary for an Appraiser

Appraisers in America make an average salary of $55,822 per year or $27 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $79,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $39,000 per year.
Average Appraiser Salary
$55,822 Yearly
$26.84 hourly
$39,000
10 %
$55,000
Median
$79,000
90 %

What Am I Worth?

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Appraiser Education

Appraiser Majors

30.5 %
7.2 %

Appraiser Degrees

Bachelors

62.3 %

Associate

16.8 %

High School Diploma

7.5 %

Top Colleges for Appraisers

1. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

2. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

3. University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$56,225
Enrollment
19,548

4. Villanova University

Villanova, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,308
Enrollment
6,819

5. San Diego State University

San Diego, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$7,488
Enrollment
30,018

6. Bentley University

Waltham, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$49,880
Enrollment
4,177

7. New York University

New York, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,828
Enrollment
26,339

8. University of Maryland - Baltimore County

Baltimore, MD • Private

In-State Tuition
$11,778
Enrollment
11,156

9. Stanford University

Stanford, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,354
Enrollment
7,083

10. Baylor University

Waco, TX • Private

In-State Tuition
$45,542
Enrollment
14,159

Top Skills For an Appraiser

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 19.5% of appraisers listed appraisal reports on their resume, but soft skills such as customer-service skills and problem-solving skills are important as well.

  • Appraisal Reports, 19.5%
  • Customer Service, 8.0%
  • MAI, 7.7%
  • Company Policies, 6.0%
  • Market Research, 5.6%
  • Other Skills, 53.2%

Choose From 10+ Customizable Appraiser Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Appraiser templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Appraiser resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Appraiser Demographics

Appraiser Gender Distribution

Male
Male
68%
Female
Female
32%

After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among appraisers, 32.2% of them are women, while 67.8% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among appraisers is White, which makes up 85.2% of all appraisers.

  • The most common foreign language among appraisers is Spanish at 53.3%.

Online Courses For Appraiser That You May Like

Advertising Disclosure  The courses listed below are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the course, we may receive a commission.
Fundamentals of Residential Property Management
udemy
4.6
(347)

Understand the foundation of residential property management as a property manager or landlord...

Property Management 101
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4.6
(402)

Learn the basics of managing rental property and becoming a landlord...

Intro to Analyzing Rental Income Properties
udemy
4.5
(1,508)

Learn the fundamentals of investment analysis specifically for rental income property investments...

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Best States For an Appraiser

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as an appraiser. The best states for people in this position are California, Virginia, Alaska, and New York. Appraisers make the most in California with an average salary of $63,936. Whereas in Virginia and Alaska, they would average $60,879 and $60,314, respectively. While appraisers would only make an average of $59,682 in New York, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Arizona

Total Appraiser Jobs:
73
Highest 10% Earn:
$83,000
Location Quotient:
2.25 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. California

Total Appraiser Jobs:
267
Highest 10% Earn:
$93,000
Location Quotient:
1.64 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Pennsylvania

Total Appraiser Jobs:
61
Highest 10% Earn:
$83,000
Location Quotient:
0.94 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Appraisers

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Top Appraiser Employers

Most Common Employers For Appraiser

Rank  Company  Average Salary  Hourly Rate  Job Openings  
1UMB Bank$100,868$48.497
2Bank of America$77,514$37.274
3The Travelers Companies$71,659$34.4512
4USAA$65,936$31.7010
5Crawford & Company$63,799$30.674
6Forsythe Technology$62,183$29.905
7Mayor Ethan Berkowitz$60,120$28.906
8Douglas County$59,739$28.726
9Fred Loya Insurance$59,491$28.604
10Anoka County$58,231$28.005

Appraiser Videos