One may think that with the current housing and mortgage crisis, it might be too late to pursue a career in Real Estate Appraisal. But the opposite is true. All “old” Arizona real estate appraisers are going to have to comply with the new rules and regs recently enacted, so the playing field is level again. You can enter this exciting, lucrative field at a unique time in history when the entire industry is looking for new, freshly trained Arizona appraiser licensees who have taken the newest curriculum. What that means to you is, lots of opportunities and lots of new doors opening in Arizona.
If you are interested in enrolling in a real estate appraisal course you should know that it will be necessary to meet licensing and/or certification requirements that are different depending on the State, but you can be sure that they will include real estate appraisal education, working as a trainee, and passing one or more license exams.
Some more good news is that no specific college degree is needed to get a real estate appraisal license, but most people working in the field of appraisal have at least a bachelor’s degree. You will need to attend a real estate appraisal school and completed the mandated real estate appraisal education requirements for your state.
Arizona Licensing Requirements
Licensed Residential Appraiser:
Complete 150 AQB qualifying course hours. Qualifying education courses taken through distance education may not exceed 75% of the required 150 hours. The 15-hour qualifying USPAP course may not be taken through distance education or taken more than two years preceding the date of the application. Pass state licensing exam.
Must have 2000 hours of experience in not less than 18 months. Experience must not be older than ten years immediately preceding the filing of the application for licensure. 75% of experience must include work product where the subject property was inspected.
College-level requirements: None
Certified Residential Appraiser:
Complete 200 AQB qualifying course hours. Qualifying education courses taken through distance education may not exceed 75% of the required 200 hours. The 15-hour qualifying USPAP course may not be taken through distance education or taken more than two years preceding the date of the application. Pass state licensing exam.
Must have 2500 hours of experience in not less than 24 months. Experience must not be older than ten years immediately preceding the filing of the application for licensure. Not less than two completed reports must be multi-family. 75% of experience must include work product where the subject property was inspected.
College-level requirements: Associate degree OR a total of at least 21 semester credit hours of collegiate subject matter courses in (1) English composition; (2) principles of economics, micro or macro; (3) finance; (4) algebra, geometry or higher mathematics; (5) statistics; (6) introduction to computers—word processing/spreadsheets; and (7) business or real estate law.
Certified General Appraiser:
Complete 300 AQB qualifying course hours. Qualifying education courses taken through distance education may not exceed 75% of the required 300 hours. The 15-hour qualifying USPAP course may not be taken through distance education or taken more than two years preceding the date of the application. Pass state licensing exam.
Must have 3000 hours of experience in not less than 30 months. At least 1500 hours must reflect nonresidential appraisals. Experience must not be older than ten years immediately preceding the filing of the application for licensure. Experience must include both residential and nonresidential experience, or the applicant has the option to enter into a Nondisciplinary Consent Agreement and Order for Limited Scope of Certificate agreeing not to prepare residential appraisals. 75% of experience must include work product where the subject property was inspected.
College-level requirements: Bachelors degree, or higher, OR a total of at least 30 semester credit hours of collegiate subject matter courses in (1) English composition; (2) micro economics (3) macro economics; (4) finance; (5) algebra, geometry or higher mathematics; (6) statistics; (7) introduction to computers—word processing/spreadsheets; (8) business or real estate law; and (9) two elective courses in accounting, geography, ag-economics, business management, or real estate.
What does a Real Estate Appraiser Do?
When the value of a property in Arizona needs to be established, the real estate appraiser goes to work. Real estate appraisers estimate the value of property for a many reasons. For example, appraisals are necessary to determine a sales price or to determine the amount of a loan that could be given on a residential or business property. A real estate appraiser may be asked to determine the worth of any type of real estate, from a vacant lot to a city airport, but they often specialize in determining the value of only a certain type of real estate such as residential buildings or commercial properties. The role of the appraiser and the assessor is different. Assessors settle on the value of all properties in an area for property tax purposes where appraisers determine the value of properties one at a time for a multiplicity of purposes, such as to establish what a good sale price would be for a home or to clear up an estate or help in a divorce resolution.
The values of all types of real estate are made using comparable methods, regardless of the kind of property or who the appraiser works for. Real Estate Appraisers work in Arizona communities that they know well so they have a good understanding of any issues that might have an impact on the value of a property. They pay close attention to any unusual features of a property and of the community, such as a certain style of a building or a major roadway next to the property. They also consider other aspects of a property like the quality and condition of the building foundation and roof of a building or any changes that may have been made since the building was originally built. They may take photographs to document a certain area or feature, as well as taking pictures of the outside of the structure. After making a visit to the property, the appraiser can establish the fair value of the property by considering home sales in the area for comparable properties, public records, the location, previous real estate appraisals, and the potential for income. Once they have completed all of their research they will put together a detailed report which presents the value of the property along with the reasons that justify the value they arrived at.
Arizona appraisers work for individual clients and focus on evaluating one piece of real estate at a time. Real estate appraisers frequently specialize by the type of real estate they appraise, such as residential properties, shopping centers, or office buildings. Often, commercial appraisers have the ability to appraise any real property but they choose to appraise property only used for commercial purposes, such as shopping centers or restaurants. Residential property appraisers work on appraising houses or other family residences and only appraise those that accommodate 1 to 5 families. Then there are other appraisers in Arizona who serve in a more general way and can value any type of real property.
Real estate appraisers develop a detailed summary report for each assignment. Putting these reports together has become faster and more efficient as a result of the use of laptop computers which allow appraisers to research data and complete at least portions of the report while on-site. Digital cameras make it simple to document the physical appearance of a property during the appraisal, and the photos can be used in the citations of the report. Appraisers spend much of their time researching and writing reports. However, with the improvement of computers and other technical advancements, such as wireless internet access, actual time in the office has gone down as so much of the required research can be done more quickly at the actual appraisal site or from home. Obtaining records that used to require a visit to government offices can often be found online. This has positively affected self-employed appraisers, frequently referred to as independent fee appraisers, allowing them to spend much more time on-site doing research and less time in their office.Independent fee appraisers tend to put in a standard forty hour work week and in addition, commonly work evenings and weekends preparing reports. Visits to properties commonly take place during the day, and are based on the client’s schedule. Privately employed appraisers, on the other hand, normally work a 40-hour week. Appraisers normally do their on-site appraisal work alone. Their office may be made up of only themselves or a small support team.