26 Aug

The process of finding an appraiser doesn’t have to be difficult. You just have to know what it is you’re looking for.


Real estate appraisers have different designations and can appraise different types of properties based on value, size, and other criteria.


A certified general appraiser, for instance, can appraise both residential and commercial properties of any value. Meanwhile, a certified residential appraiser is what you want if you’re looking at residential properties consisting of one to four units, regardless of cost. For residential properties with one to four units and values less than $1 million, you will want a licensed residential appraiser.


If you’re looking to hire an appraiser, read on for where to find them and how to hire the best ones.


Where to find a property appraiser


There's no single licensing authority or governing body that oversees all real estate appraisers. That means that it's up to you to find the best appraisers based on their qualifications, experience, expertise, and training.


Professional groups


You can find an appraiser by searching the databases of organizations such as the American Society of Appraisers, National Auctioneers Association, and International Society of Appraisers. You can look for one based on location, expertise, and industry.


Social media


Is there anything you won’t find on social media today? Yes, even property appraisers advertise their business on Instagram, Facebook, and other social networks.


Homeowners associations


Reach out to your contacts in the real estate industry. You may want to get in touch with condo associations, homeowners associations, lenders, real estate agents, property managers, and other individuals or groups who have done business with appraisers to get recommendations.


What to look for in a property appraiser



  • Professional designations 



Licensed appraisers are different from certified appraisers. Industry designations are essential as well. The most popular ones are Senior Residential Appraiser (SRA), Senior Real Property Appraiser (SRPA), and Member of the Appraisal Institute (MAI).



  • State licensing and/or certification



Some states do not require a license to conduct real estate appraisals. But it’s important, nonetheless. Though state licensing or certification does not always ensure the quality of an appraiser’s work, it does guarantee that the appraiser has met the required standards and is state-authorized to conduct property appraisals. 


When interviewing appraisers, do not hesitate to ask for a copy of their license. Once you have acquired a copy, check if the license is current and is in good standing. The minimum license you should require is a State-Certified Residential Real Estate Appraiser.



  • Experience



The appraisers you hire should have at least several years of experience working on properties and communities in which you do business or are looking to do business in. Experience in certain neighborhoods is important because it means they are familiar with and have an excellent working knowledge of the property values and other variables, such as school districts, in the area.



  • References



Before you hire an appraiser, talk to some of the real estate agents, accountants, and other people they’ve worked with before. Run an online background check on them, check their appraiser’s credentials, and look for feedback from former clients.


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