Certified Appraisers Up but Total Number of Appraisers Down

Total number appraisers stats

Certified Appraisers at All-time High but Total Number of Appraisers Continues to Decrease

The percentage of appraisers with a state certification is at an all-time high but the total number of appraisers continues to decrease at a rate of about 3 percent per year, according to data released April 9 by the Appraisal Institute.

Appraisal Institute has analyzed data from the Appraisal Subcommittee National Registry since 2006, and the long-term trend shows that with more than half of U.S. appraisers aged 51 to 65, the appraiser population could decrease 25 to 35 percent over the next 10 years due to age attrition and fewer new entrants. However, AI noted that these openings could present numerous opportunities for new appraisers.

“In spite of a higher level of appraiser qualification overall, the lack of career prospects for trainees and few new people entering the profession are legitimate and serious issues, yet opportunities do exist to reach the next generation and employment options will, in fact, likely be enhanced in the coming years,”

said Appraisal Institute President Richard L. Borges II, MAI, SRA.

Broader analysis of the data suggests the decrease primarily is due to:

  • A sharp and long-term decline in the number of new people entering the field;
  • A high rate of future retirements due to the high mean age of appraisers;
  • Individuals leaving the profession due to challenging business conditions;
  • Increasing government regulation;
  • Wider use of alternative valuation technologies displacing some appraisers (especially in the residential sector); and
  • A potential oversupply of residential appraisers. (Nearly 70 percent of all appraisers focus primarily on residential appraisals.)

While the data revealed that the overall number of appraisers is decreasing, the number of certified general and residential appraisers is on the upswing.

The analysis shows there were nearly 6,000 more certified general and residential appraisers on Dec. 31, 2012 than there were at year-end 2006. For the same period, there was a decline of nearly 16,000 licensed appraisers. About a third of the decline is because appraisers achieved certified status. A large majority of appraisers who left the profession in the past three years were licensed-only appraisers who were either relatively new to the profession or did not pursue certification.

The proportion of certified appraisers to total appraisers was 72 percent at year-end 2006. As of year-end 2012, the proportion was 87 percent. While the total number of appraisers has decreased 15 percent since 2007, the data indicates that the appraiser population is more qualified overall.

Commercial, non-traditional (non-point-in-time) valuations appear to be a growth opportunity for individuals with advanced analytical, financial and mathematical skills, Borges said. He noted that key growth markets might be working with accountants, financial analysts, investors and others on real estate portfolio management/analysis, purchase, lease and investment packaging. He also noted that additional areas of real estate valuation — right of way, conservation easement, taxation issues and litigation support (expert witness testimony) — could provide opportunities for professionals looking to enter the valuation profession.

More about U. S. appraiser demographic below.

~ Source Appraisal Institute (AI)



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4 Responses

  1. Retired Appraiser Retired Appraiser says:

    If you are losing 3% per year you may actually be able to force the fair fees issue in 15 to 20 years. LOL

    In reality residential will no longer be needed for transactions 10 years from now (which explains why the government has no problem with the situation).

  2. Avatar Winston Smith says:

    If low end fees continue to dominate the business, regulation continues to increase, litigation for 10 year old appraisals continues, as well as lack of any legislative or judicial support for the appraisal profession then it would appear as though 3% may begin to set a trend towards much larger losses across the board. ES Valuation just kicked thousands of appraisers in the face with ample help from Chase bank and the Florida court system. I think most young people should steer clear of this business until the darkness goes away which appears to be several years down the line.

  3. Mike Ford CA AG, SCREA, GAA, RAA Mike Ford CA AG, SCREA, GAA, RAA says:

    For me it is the final paragraph that is the most informational tidbit in this article. it is going to have far more influence on the future of appraising than anything else noted in the article.

    Remember years ago when the AI said there were “growth opportunities” for appraiser assisted AVMs, and they then went on to promote them? How’d that work out for everybody?

    I’ve said it numerous times before. The focus of the AI and (apparently) TAF & IVSC is to merge the two disciplines of real estate appraisal and business valuation into one overall “valuation profession”. Real estate appraisers had better become sufficiently familiar with BV to understand WHY this is not a good idea. The BV valuators already know why they don’t want to be constrained by USPAP.

    Most real estate appraisers eyes glaze over the second Business Valuation is mentioned. If they do not start  paying attention, we will all have new names AND a new set of “standards” that few will like. That will be the LEAST of the negatives.

  4. Avatar J W says:

    It is interesting to me that the trends are taken from a time when the certified appraiser requirement took affect which makes this whole topic pretty much toilet paper and a flawed analysis. If you want to determine trends you shouldn’t take them from a point when there was a mandate. That is like analyzing how many people decided to buy health insurance from the time Obamacare was implicated.


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Certified Appraisers Up but Total Number of Appraisers Down

by AppraisersBlogs time to read: 2 min