Nationwide Appraiser Count vs. Fake News

Nationwide Appraiser Count & Credentials Trend vs. Appraiser Shortage Lie - Appraisers Blogs

12 Year Trend: Active Appraiser Credentials…

We often hear about the ‘shortage’ of appraisers in the US. This is fake news promulgated by a number of AMC’s who cannot find enough appraisers to do their assignments – largely because the AMC won’t pay the appraiser an appropriate fee for service, or other issues.

John Brenan, Director of Appraisal Issues for The Appraisal Foundation, gave a presentation at the Washington State association of appraisers conference on Aug. 16. He showed this slide during his presentation:

12 Year Trend: Active Appraiser Credentials

Note that these are CREDENTIALS… the licenses granted by the individual states, which are then reported to TAF and placed on the ASC Appraisal Registry web site. The stats do not reflect INDIVIDUAL appraisers, because some of those folks have MULTIPLE credentials.

But the facts really show that the number of INDIVIDUAL appraisers would correlate with the number of Credentials. In other words, the number of Certified appraisers has increased, while the Licensed category has declined. That was primarily caused by FHA deciding a few years ago not to use Licensed category appraisers for FHA assignments, even though many of them had been doing appropriate reports for FHA for many years prior. Some Licensed appraisers have earned the Certification status, but not as many as who decided to end their work appraising.

In the US, there are presently approximately 75,000 to 80,000 INDIVIDUAL appraisers.

The bottom line is there is NO current shortage of appraisers. There are reluctant currently licensed appraisers who choose not to work for certain clients who treat them poorly. Clients with that business plan whine loudly. The fix is pretty simple, but many lenders don’t want to make things right. There are appraisers who choose not to work in extreme rural areas. Those who do have extended report delivery times, which many clients don’t like… so they whine some more… and ask for appraisal waivers.

Dave Towne
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Dave Towne

Dave Towne

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

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16 Responses

  1. Avatar Bill Johnson says:

    We can look at numbers from a national average to get a helicopter view, but of course that is only part of the story. Some months back (12?) Housingwire was on a HUGE appraiser shortage kick, and blatantly said the same thing without seeking the truth. In short, when one looks at national appraisal volume (need) from 10 to 15 years ago, versus national need of today, (significantly less residential work, appraisal waivers (10 to 20% reduction?), hybrids, AVM’s, etc.), seeking of the truth will show we have more appraisers per needed volume today, not less.

    Seek the truth.

  2. Avatar Tim says:

    I have to wonder how much the “active” appraiser number differs from the “licensed inactive “ appraiser. I’m still a licensed RE agent even though I haven’t been involved in a listing sale or rental in 20 years, but it doesn’t cost me $600 plus CE every two years to keep my RE license either.

  3. Avatar Don says:

    Single Source AMC just sent me a full FHA interior appraisal assignment for $255.00 and it was due in 4 days. NO THANKS!

    • Unbelievable. Despite Dodd Frank, we are still fighting over reasonable fees! That this should happen with an FHA transaction is unforgivable. Send the order to the area or regional FHA Service Center for your and ask honestly; “How does this fee equate to reasonable compensation to assure quality work is performed?” No one other than a starving appraiser with imminent bills he or she ca’nt pay would accept that kind of fee anywhere in the country.

      Call the AMC out on that one… or send me a copy of the order and I’ll do it.

  4. Avatar EJ says:

    I received a request from PCVmurcor to do a  USDA REO report that was to include the REO addendum for $316. My whole coverage area of 8 counties is rural. I also work with USDA directly and they pay $450 – $500 and you don’t have any of the BS to put up with. Where did the rest of the fee go? I told them $550 just because they are an AMC, they said Ho Ho No.. So what, who cares….

    • Avatar Realrose says:

      Back in the old days, when I worked in the Southern California area, PVC Murcor had a poor reputation for quality. That is why I wouldn’t take any work from them; most AMCs are the same; the guy who used to be an appraiser thought it was too hard to appraise, so he invented a computer program to do regression analysis on sfrs or became the owner of an AMC. Now I call these AMCs pimps for the banks; many are owned by large financial conglomerates and they have been buying up all the businesses we buy forms from to do work for a quasi governmental agency that doesn’t know what they are doing, and the banks are getting ready for the next crash so they can get bailed out.

      Banks and appraisers never had a cozy relationship, so I think that is healthy. We are not there to rubber stamp their deals, and the realtors have an interest in the property selling for the highest price, so the prices keep getting driven up with pressure from new housing formations needing housing. Since we are the only neutral professional with licensing, education, insurance, mls, forms, continuing education and AMCs acting in the interest of capturing most of our income and giving us pennies on the dollar, it is evident that avms are their next step to ridding the loan process of the professional appraiser because they have a nerd for that who made his name playing games on video, and he knows how to make computers work. The process hasn’t changed since we did appraisals without computers, but somehow some people think artificial intelligence is better delivered by nerds than a real person who studied the market and sized up the house based on comps and market trends. It takes more time and there is more reporting so statistics can be tracked for investors, not homeowners.

      This is a dying profession unless we can get decent lobbying, and make policy that keeps hybrids and all other avms and other incompetent analyses out of the file of home loans; they are insured by the government, and the government now wants to de-regulate, so I feel another crisis brewing if we let them have their way. I have done jobs that actually cost me money, just to stay in the game. I can’t compete with a computer on speed, but that is not my ultimate goal; mine is to keep my integrity and not work for pimps, and not be so hungry I become a whore for them!

      • Oddly Rose, according to FHFAs last working paper you CAN compete with a computer on speed. That’s right. The working paper conclusion was that to achieve 1 roughly 1.5% greater degree of accuracy that it would take their computers 48 working hours to achieve a rate of accuracy that was less than 7.8% as ‘accurate’ as a human performed appraisal.

        Of course their ‘good enough’ reduced accuracy only takes minutes. We see it in action with CU all the time. Of course any human appraiser that comes in 7.8% high OR low will be subjected to sanctions against their license. That’s probably the real reason GSEs and AMCs want hybrids or better yet fully automated analyses… no one to be blamed that way. Let Congress try prosecuting a software program.

    • Avatar Jack Of All Trades says:

      PCV is one of the main pimps in the Low life AMC empire. I asked them to remove me from their panel a few years ago and my life’s been better ever since

  5. Avatar pat says:

    Join or start your Coalition!!

  6. Avatar AMCs Suck says:

    Streelinks (now Assurant) sent me an order to appraise an 11000sqft sfr that had previously sold a few months earlier for $6,000,000. The fee offered was $350. Their “appraiser liaison” -read dried up, former timeshare salesman – tried to tell me there was no way to get the fee up to $1500+; $600 – $700  was max fee he told me. I declined. Welcome to the greatest country in the world and how our politicians ensure our country’s financial and economic viability. Appraising is now nearly another full blown United States of Fatcats sweatshop industry.

  7. Gregory Beck on Facebook Gregory Beck on Facebook says:

    Only a shortage of appraisers willing to work cheap

  8. Avatar Don says:

    Single Source just sent an appraisal order for a full 1004 with rent schedule for $185.00 due 09/03/2018 in Jacksonville, FL. NO THANK YOU

    • Baggins Baggins says:

      And you willingly remain on their mailing list…

      A succer is certainly born every minute. But what many fail to realize, they don’t just die off when they realize they’ve been had.

      The choice to take action is yours and yours alone.

  9. Send it to me at  (redact all your vendor ID info first)

    I’ll accept it. In fact, everyone should accept it. In the spirit of seriousness and sincerity in which they arrived at the C&R fee offered for it. In fact, I’ll write the client direct and ask if there is some kind of error in the fee being offered, or whether they are simply criminally stupid too.

    People if ANYONE is still working for these clowns please stop. Just stop! Accepting any kind of order just helps them stay in business.

  10. Baggins Baggins says:

    These points are good. However, the issue needs clarified with a 10 year breakdown indicating the attrition of appraisers actively accepting work for mortgage lending clients. That number certainly has decreased in a direct relationship with the increasing shares of amc management per order.

    There is a shortage of appraisers willing to work for discounted fees and expanded sow. That’s true.

    There is not a shortage of available appraisers, if terms were fair. That is also true.


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Nationwide Appraiser Count vs. Fake News

by Dave Towne time to read: 1 min