AQB Qualifications Criteria Changes, I wanted to wait to send info about this until the AQB actually published a document showing the actual ‘new’ Qualifications Criteria for Real Property Appraisers. When first announced a few days ago, no official document was posted – only a news release.

These take effect May 1, 2018. See the attached 4 page PDF.

Due to ‘states rights’ issues in 54 jurisdictions (states & territories), implementation may not actually happen on 5/01/18. The document says this:

“Because state appraiser regulatory agencies are only required to adopt minimum AQB Criteria, it is crucial that candidates contact their state to determine if the state intends to adopt any or all of these changes, and if so, when the changes may go into effect.”

The AQB has reduced the 4 year college degree absolute requirement to become Certified Residential, but still ‘mandates’ that or other specified education. This is a workable solution to enable people to enter the profession. Certified General will still require a minimum 4 year college degree.

Additionally, for those appraisers who hold the ‘Licensed Residential’ level of license for 5 years or longer, they can apply to become Certified Residential. That seems to be a fair compromise.


Dave Towne
Dave Towne

Dave Towne

AGA, MNAA, Accredited Green Appraiser - Licensed in WA State since 2003. Dave Towne on

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11 Responses

  1. Retired Appraiser Retired Appraiser says:

    “Now…what else can we do for you AMCs?”  ~ Appraisal Foundation

  2. I know I’d benefit from an English Comp class, but do we really need to return appraisal practice to the way it was done in 1980 for everything? Can’t I just reread my Strunk & White? Does the production of misleading narrative reports through the use of sophistry really require a degree? Odd how they encourage computer science as a study, yet ignore all the things a computer has replaced… like the need for algebra. Maybe it’s study is helpful in developing algorithms for useful tools like Zillow, RealValue, ClearVal and FNMAs Chucky-Upchuck? College level macroeconomics for 1-4 unit residential appraisers? As opposed to a half day seminar or online course by Kaplan or McKissock? Are we really seeing a lot of localized market impact from variations in the strength of the U.S. Dollar relative to the Pula in Botswana? Is balance of trade with Burkina Faso affecting condo prices in Brooklyn, Poughkeepsie, or Enid, Oklahoma? Let me short cut the 3 credit hours in microeconomics; Plentiful jobs = good thing. No jobs = bad thing. Since when are we in the fortune telling business? I appreciate that certain disciplines have been forecasting pie in the sky highest and best use scenarios for many decades based on their statistically supported fortune telling abilities, but isn’t the whole point of FIRREA/USPAP to stop the deception and misleading practices of the past? Most residential appraisers are not trying to blow smoke up the tailpipe of IRS auditors over the rejected value of conservation easement donations… unlike designated appraisal and accounting “professionals”. Microeconomics my ass! Call your local broker and ask if houses are selling or not! Do they really think most buyers and sellers are sitting over a cup of Starbucks coffee discussing whether or not their city will be selected for the new Amazon Fulfillment Center before deciding on a price? I guess the intent is to teach appraisers how to be more inaccurate than the nationally recognized economists and other ‘experts’ are. Only thing missing is the Economics and Political Whims interpretive courses. Am I the only one still using Financial Tables? Geometry? Yes. We use geometry. Any good Eighth Grade Geometry book has all you need to know. Forgotten how to measure the area of a chord or segment? It’s all in there. Admittedly every time in my career that I have had to measure the exact arable surface area of a residential flower garden with compound curvature surfaces to the nearest sq cm it HAS been a challenge. Been meaning to ask all you guys. How DO you do it? Impact? Let me guess, paired sales or regression analysis, right? Would a course in “Ultra-minimagic-micro-economics” tell me how much longer this house with the defective flower garden surface will take to sell? Agricultural Economics for residential appraisers? Because we have ALL had clients that needed to know the impact on value and marketability if it wasn’t economic to grow organic zucchini in a hothouse flower garden of a row type house in downtown Philadelphia. Statistics-perhaps. Princeton even offers a free online course in stats (no credits though). This is for those that failed the microeconomics course above and need to make the numbers come out differently in any direction they choose. Figures never lie, but liars always figure. Again, while helpful in limited circumstances most residential appraisers are not basing their conclusions on cleaned or scrubbed regional area statistics. Respectfully AQB, even I can tell if local values are increasing or declining without a college course.

    Here is the kicker – once again General Certified Appraisers on the AQB have dipped into the bag of tricks most commonly employed by “designated” appraisers to baffle ‘lesser humans’ with complex formulae and citations from academia in their disciplines, and are now imposing those criteria on a side of appraising that needs almost none of it! Keep in mind many AQB members are from California. California has legalized pot for personal consumption. Statistically speaking, what are the odds that was a factor in developing this educational ‘requirements’ laundry list designed to justify the continued existence of TAF? I propose a new definition for profession. “Any skill, service, trade, art or specialized practice which has become sufficiently profitable for certain practitioners to seek to exclude others from practicing through imposition of burdensome unnecessary regulations and/or advanced educational requirements.” We all benefit from learning. I submit we’d see most benefit with directly relevant education from continued use of private post primary secondary educational providers (yes, regulators really describe McKissock and others that way)

  3. Avatar Marion says:

    Ha, that was funny Mike.

    A good course in Micro Economics should teach everyone why, residential appraising is not a path, when you have a student loan to pay for. A good class in Macro Economics, should teach everyone why, the barrier to entry of requiring a 4 year degree, after years of many CGs and MAIs without degrees successfully practicing in the industry is a restraint of competition to which there is no justification, other than restraint and manipulation of the market, for appraisal services. But then again, what would me, a CG with a high school diploma know about it? Perhaps the FTC should look into this and bring along some NC Dentists for the ride.

    • Marion, I still say follow the money on the FTC case. Amazing they cant see the difference between fixed dental offices v field appraisers.

      I was rereading my 13th edition – noticed all the ‘new’ emphasis on regression (of the baffle ’em with bullsquat kind). OK, they have me. Algebra absolutely required for those that are going to do regression analysis manually or with slide rules and or pocket calculators from the $0.99 store. The ones who don’t trust software at all; or anticipate being asked in court to explain all the steps in their analysis.

      I suspect we may have reached a point of divergence between standards applicable to SFR / 1-4 units and C&I work finally. While the broader descriptive framework still fits both, much more emphasis in text is purely income property related.

    • Baggins Baggins says:

      I’m also limited by a high school diploma! Previously I had engaged but the economic feasibility to ride it out was simply not there. I want to share in your success Marion, my dear online friend. Meanwhile, approximately 8 out of 10 of the people I knew who pursued higher education are sacked with loans, never bought houses, and are still paying to this day. My cousin went to community college, he regaled me with glorious tales of microfiche printing on water bottles, hacking test results, text answer cheating, and complete lack of oratory qualification. Question: “Whether it be lawful to resist the supreme magistrate if the commonwealth cannot otherwise be preserved”

  4. Avatar Marion says:

    Funny. Does explaining the algebra for regression require more than high school algebra, but you can use tables for the six functions of a dollar, and list the keystrokes on your HP12c to explain your future value calculation.

    Not to worry. Over on that other site they’re telling appraisers you can be Geo-Competent by using the computer, oh and don’t worry about verifying your data if the client provides it to you from a “reliable” source.

    The even funnier one was the two compliance experts that did not know the AMC final rule allows for ANYONE to voluntarily register as an AMC and not be subject to the 15 on a panel definition, or the federal registration fee.

    Some days aren’t worth chewing through the restraints.

    • Rofl.

      Re dollar I still use The Tables. Have you looked at AIs regression chapter(s) lately?

      IF they are prepared to claim (and support by credible market evidence and samples) that there is NO OTHER way to achieve reliable results, then I’ll concede the necessity of a college level algebra course.

      Of course by ‘no other way’ I include such AI/MAI courses as are specifically taught and promoted by MAIs such as George Dell. I can see the benefit to a course like Georges that will teach me how to properly build (QUICKLY build) a regression model and employ it. I cannot see the benefit if going back for a four year degree just to better understand all the technicalities of RA.

      Particularly when I already know of its limited applicability to most residential neighborhoods from testing off the shelf RA results..

    • Baggins Baggins says:

      Can you like, please host a CE class on that content or whatever? I’m going to need some help on those topics.

  5. Baggins Baggins says:

    Great dialogue, remarkable. Over the years, many random applicants. None had relevant housing experience. Almost all had one thing in common; a misconception that appraisal is about advanced math and their time spent advocating for their financial sector employer was sufficient qualification. If you want to be a better appraiser, spend more time on construction sites and at the lumber warehouses. You don’t know value if you don’t know cost. You can not apply reasonable value if you don’t understand the labor challenges. You’re likely to be worthless at health and safety issue identification if you’re clueless about mechanical sewer hvac and electrical systems and how homes are built. The worst lazy home inspector or even greenthumb teen makes for a better candidate than white collars.

    A note to consumers; Demand a 15 year note instead if you know what’s good for you. If looking at mortgaged amount only, a 15 vs 30 will immediately invert from less than 1/3rd principal paydown and deliver an over 2/3rd paydown rate instead. If looking at total costs, in your first years on a 30, swapping to 15, you’ll go from 10% to 50%+ principal contributions instead. Cash out is risky business, bad idea. Reaching 80% ltv and swapping to a shorter term is what smart people do, ya dig? Do you see how simple that math is? I could list 10,000 pages of industry related reading material but I digress. If you crack under the pressure you can always outsource, unwittingly trading away lasting staying power for short term success. Or you can dial it in with supreme hubris and hire lots of under qualified help. Remember, your first big penalty is likely to be your last.

    Hey, by the way, what’s your best fee and turn time? Every single person involved in appraisal distribution should be required to hold an appraisers license. This recent release of qualification standard will hopefully bring us closer to the primary correction this industry so desperately needs, adequately qualified co-workers.


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AQB Qualifications Criteria Changes

by Dave Towne time to read: 1 min