What does a Certified Residential Appraiser do?

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  • Written By: Elva K.
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 06 November 2019
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Certified residential appraisers do appraisals for residential properties such as homes or apartments. The work involves doing appraisal for the purpose of finding out the value of a property. To become a certified residential appraiser, you generally will need a college degree and post-graduate appraisal certification.

It can be helpful to get a four-year college degree if you want to become a certified residential appraiser; however, you are not limited to just one area of study. In fact, you could major in any subject you choose. Granted, it can be helpful to take courses in business or real estate as part of the degree. Subjects such as business and real estate give useful background information that is applicable to property valuation and this can help you as you are learning how to appraise property.

Also, regardless of what major you choose, getting good grades can be important. After you have obtained certification as a residential appraiser, a high college grade point average (GPA) is something that will distinguish you from your competition. Thus, a high college grade point average could help you to more easily get a job as an appraiser.


States vary slightly in terms of specific requirements; however, generally speaking, you will need at least 200 hours of appraisal coursework after the college degree. Typically, aspiring certified residential appraisers enroll in an appraisal course offered by a real estate school. The course will usually include real estate topics such as real estate law, ethics, and local laws. Then, a certified appraiser is found who is willing to supervise you as you complete an internship in appraisal, where you will typically get at least 2,500 hours of supervised appraisal experience while doing additional appraisal coursework. Coursework must pertain to the National Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (NUSPAP).

Passing the appraisal licensure exam is the next step if you want to become a certified residential appraiser. This six-hour exam is scored on a pass/fail basis and includes topics such as appraisal ethics, factors that affect value, legal issues, appraisal math and statistics, site value methods, cost approach, or economic principles. The exact number of responses required to pass the exam varies depending on which location or jurisdiction you are in.

After passing the exam, you must submit an application to the local board, which will include a statement of your education, your appraisal training, and your real estate appraisal licensure exam results. In addition, you will likely be required to submit to a criminal background check. Upon approval of your application, you are then eligible to work as a certified residential appraiser. As a certified residential appraiser, you can appraise properties with fewer than five units.


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