The appraiser…..the person who appraises real estate, i.e., property and land, does so by the process of developing an opinion of value for real property…..usually market value. Appraisal reports form the basis for mortgage loans, settling estates and divorces, taxation, and so on. Sometimes an appraisal report is used to set the sale price of a property. Here in the Charleston area, professional appraisers have been kept extremely busy due to the strong market conditions. You would think that this field would be attracting more people into the field because of that. Unfortunately that is not the case. At the beginning of 2015 the Appraisal Institute had 22,000 professionals in almost 60 countries. The number now sits at 20,000 professionals, clearly showing evidence of a growing problem that is plaguing the industry. The majority of appraisers are nearing the age of retirement. According to Scott Pickell, vice president and chief appraiser at LRES, said that the average age of an appraiser is about 58 years old. With technology came the ability for appraisers to work remotely and longer hours. So you see these older appraisers working even past retirement age. This is all good but as time goes on, there isn’t a large pool of younger aged appraisers coming through the system. Why are younger people not attracted to the field? One reason that I read about was due to the enormous amount of regulations put on appraisers. Some of the regulations exclude the ability of appraisers to take on trainees. It makes it difficult to train people even when there are people interested in this career. The problem lies in the fact that the regulations do not allow trainees to be able to do inspections on their own. They can’t even sign a certification for the first year. This is of course for their protection but it has slowed the training ground for up and coming appraisers considerably. There was a time when it was out of control. There were way too many trainees, but the pendulum has swung too far the other way.
One solution to attract the younger sector may be through college courses? Perhaps implement it into Business Management curriculum? I feel that this profession is such a viable part of our real estate world and it is being undersold as a career.