Real estate appraisal is a fast-growing business. With the housing market at an all-time high, there’s never been more of a need for appraisers.
The US department of labor expects this field to grow by a massive 7% over the next ten years! But can you really make good money as a real estate appraiser? Sure, if you have the know-how!
So, let’s take an in-depth look at a few tips and tricks, and find the answer to the burning question, “how much do real estate appraisers make?”
- What Does A Real Estate Appraiser Do?
- How To Judge How Much A Property Is Worth?
- How To Become A Real Estate Appraiser
- What Are The Levels?
- Handy Hints For Making Money
- So, You Want To Be A Real Estate Appraiser?
- How Much Do Real Estate Appraisers Make? – Final Thoughts
What Does A Real Estate Appraiser Do?
When a house goes up for sale, we need to think about two things:
1. How much does the seller want?
2. How much is the property worth?
So, how do you know?
That’s where a real estate appraiser comes in. Using their expert knowledge, the appraiser will give an estimate on how much the home can reasonably expect to bring in. This is good for both the seller and buyer, as it protects them from either being short-changed or paying over market rate.
Read more: How to Become a Real Estate Agent?
How To Judge How Much A Property Is Worth?
There are lots of different factors to consider. It’s hard to tell the condition of a property at first glance. The real estate appraiser has to spend time both on and offsite considering the overall cost.
Firstly, they will do an outdoor walk-about of the entire property. This allows them to check the exterior for any potential issues. Then they’ll do a similar thing with the interior, going from room to room, making notes of any structural problems.
Checking every square…
The appraiser will check out the layout. They measure the square footage of each room, as well as the property as a whole. They also record whether it’s a single-family dwelling or if it has ample room for multiple parties.
After that, they look for any extra amenities. Add-ons such as a swimming pool or man cave in the basement can bump up the price. The appraiser needs to think about the condition they’re in and how much they might be worth.
Is that all?
No, there’s more! Once a full onsite inspection has been completed, the appraiser will take their findings back to the office. There, they’ll compare the property with other houses in the area and consider the condition it is in. Only when that’s done can the appraiser accurately gauge the value of the home.
How long does it take?
The appraiser will probably spend about an hour or two inspecting the property. After that, they need to take their time when cross-referencing it with other local houses. All in all, you can expect it to take anything from three to eight days to get a full and accurate appraisal.
So, as you can see, it’s pretty complicated! A real estate appraiser needs to know their stuff! When appraising a home, there’s a lot more to think about than you might first expect.
How To Become A Real Estate Appraiser
Like many other industries, real estate appraisal is highly regulated. One can’t just wake up one day and decide to start pricing houses! There are a few hoops to jump through before you can start making money. Real estate appraisers need to be licensed.
And there are four different levels of licenses, depending on your training and experience. Achieving that highest level takes a bit of time, and you’ll need to drop some cash to do so.
What Are The Levels?
Slow down! First things first, check your state’s requirements for real estate appraisers. Most ask for a certain level of education and a few other qualifications as well.
If you’re not sure where to start, The Appraisal Foundation is a great resource. Authorized by Congress, this helpful organization can advise you on getting started in your career. It has links to state requirements as well as information about changes in rules and regulations across the board.
Level 1: Appraiser Trainee
As a trainee, you will be supervised by a fully-licensed appraiser at all times. This level is all about learning the ropes. Once you’ve got 1000 hours of experience under your belt, you can take an exam to get that first license.
A 75-hour training course is required to get this license. This will include units on professional standards, as well as procedures to be followed. An online school such as Real Estate Express can provide you with a suitable course, but be careful! Course content and requirements can vary from state to state, so check yours before you begin.
How much do appraiser trainees make?
The rate of pay will vary depending on how many hours you work per week. On average, an appraiser trainee can expect to earn between $1000 and $3000 per month. It might not seem like much, but it’s the first stepping stone to a more lucrative career.
Level 2: Licensed Residential Appraiser
So, you’ve completed your 1000 hours on the job and finished the training course. Congratulations! Now it’s time to become a licensed residential appraiser.
There’s no need for supervision at this level. You will need to complete another 75-hour course, but you are allowed to work alone. Licensed residential appraisers are limited, though. They can only appraise properties with a value of less than $1,000,000 that consists of up to four units.
How much do home appraisers get paid at level 2?
Good news! The salary is higher than a trainee’s. A licensed residential appraiser will probably earn at least $35,000 a year and could get as much as $85,000.
Level 3: Certified Residential Appraiser
The penultimate level is a lot harder than the previous licenses. It also has a few more requirements. Many states insist on a college degree for this one, so check before beginning the process.
Applicants have to do yet another course, this time one that’s 50-hours long. They also need 1500 hours of experience and then to pass an exam. After that, they’re qualified to appraise larger properties and those worth over $1,000,000.
How much do certified appraisers make?
Once you’ve got this certification, it comes with a pretty decent pay bump. A certified appraiser can get an extra $10,000 more than a level 2 employee. And if you snag a managerial role, it could be even more.
Level 4: Certified General Appraiser
This is it; you’ve finally reached boss level! The final and most difficult license to achieve is a certified general appraiser. This one has even more requirements than the last.
To gain this one, a college degree is a must regardless of where you’re based. It asks for a whopping 3000 hours of experience and 300 hours in total courses. It takes a hefty amount of time and effort, but once you’ve completed it, you’ll be an appraisal expert!
How much do real estate appraisers make at this level?
There are absolutely no restrictions on the type of properties a level 4 appraiser can look at. And that means they’re high in demand and can charge a pretty penny! You should expect to earn at least $25,000 more than a licensed residential appraiser, and it could easily go up!
Handy Hints For Making Money
As you’ve just seen, the more qualified you are, the higher your salary will be. So, it is worth getting those qualifications. OK, it costs money to do the courses and sit the examinations, but it’s worth it in the long run. You’ve also got to put the hours in. This job pays per appraisal. If you deal with as many houses as you can fit into your schedule, then your salary will be higher.
Big or small?
It can be tempting to only do smaller homes as they take less time. But appraisers charge more for larger properties. If you can get a few of those a week, then you’ll be making big bucks.
And finally, do you want to work alone or with an appraisal firm? An agency can help you find more properties, but you’re expected to hand over a percentage of your pay. Working by yourself is more difficult, but you also get to keep more of that sweet, sweet moolah.
So, You Want To Be A Real Estate Appraiser?
There are numerous guides and handbooks online to help you study, such as the Barron’s Real Estate Licensing Exams, 10th Edition (Barron’s Real Estate Licensing Exams: Salesperson, Broker, Appraiser), the Practice Examination Questions for Real Estate Appraisers, and the Real Estate Appraiser Exam Success: Master the Key Vocabulary of the Real Estate Appraiser Exam.
Next, we also found How to Become a Real Estate Appraiser: A Step-by-Step Guide with Practical Advice & Real-World Insight for Starting Your Own Home Appraisal Business, and The Compact Real Estate Appraiser handbook, as well as How to Get Started in the Real Estate Appraisal Business, to help improve your skills.
Lastly, we recommend reading How to Become a Real Estate Appraiser – 3rd Edition: The best home-based business in America, The appraisal of real estate guide, and Risk Management for Real Estate Appraisers and Appraisal Firms, all available online in 2023.
How Much Do Real Estate Appraisers Make? – Final Thoughts
A career as a real estate appraiser is a fantastic option for many people. But it’s not for everyone. You’ll need a great eye for detail, a strong work ethic, plus enough time to complete the various courses to get licensed.
And don’t be afraid to put the work in. A good real estate appraiser can make a lot of money. As long as you make the effort, you’ll soon find yourself bringing home the bacon.
All the very best in your new job as a Real Estate Appraiser!
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