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Appraisers Provide a Wide Variety of Services, Appraisal Institute Says

Oct. 24, 2019

Hiring a Designated Member of the Appraisal Institute can provide a broad range of benefits to commercial and residential clients, the president of the nation’s largest professional association of real estate appraisers said today.

“When hiring a valuation professional, clients should first understand the role of an appraiser,” said Appraisal Institute President Stephen S. Wagner, MAI, SRA, AI-GRS. “The appraiser’s role is to provide objective, impartial and unbiased opinions about the value of real property — helping those who own, manage, sell, invest in and lend money on the security of real estate.”

Before clients select an appraiser, Wagner recommended that they make Appraisal Institute Designated Members their preferred source for reliable appraisal services. Appraisers who become Designated Members of the Appraisal Institute have gone beyond the minimum requirements that each state requires for appraisers, he said.

“Appraisal Institute Designated Members have completed stringent educational requirements, have considerable professional experience, and adhere to standards of professional practice that exceed those required by state or federal law,” Wagner said. “Designated Members also are required to participate in continuing education programs, including those that emphasize the most-up-to-date valuation techniques.”

Wagner also encouraged potential clients to take advantage of the wide range of services that appraisers offer. Depending upon an appraiser’s designation and qualifications, he or she can provide or assist with:

Estate planning and estate settlements; Tax assessment review and advice;

  • Advice in eminent domain and condemnation property transactions;
  • Dispute resolution — including divorce, estate settlements, property partition suits, foreclosures and zoning issues;
  • Feasibility studies;
  • Expert witness testimony;
  • Market rent and trend studies;
  • Cost/benefit or investment analysis, e.g., financial return on remodeling;
  • Land utilization studies and
  • Supply and demand studies.
Wagner suggested that the best way for consumers to combat potential problems with appraisals performed for lending purposes is to ensure the appraiser hired by their lender is highly qualified and that the right questions are asked.

He said homebuyers should request that their lender ask the appraiser:
  • What professional designations do you have and from whom?
  • Are you licensed or certified in the state in which you live?
  • How long have you been in practice?
  • What level of experience do you have in this particular market and with this type of property?
  • Are you familiar with property in this neighborhood?
  • What types of clients have you had?
To find a Designated Member of the Appraisal Institute, visit the Appraisal Institute’s website