Join an appraisal organization
There are a number of good appraisal organizations that are effective in representing the appraisal industry. Being involved in an organization increases your network, keeps you in touch with the changes happening the profession, and gives you valuable knowledge about the field.
Get involved in your state association
By getting involved with state legislators and providing input in developing appraisal policy you can stay on top of the changing market. Appraisers who involve themselves in these activities are rarely surprised by new regulations and have a hand in shaping the policy that might affect them.
Increase your skill set
If appraising is to remain a relevant industry an appraiser needs to learn the tools and meet the needs of our clients. The quality of our services needs to be better than simple AI valuation machines. For now there will always be demand for a competent, qualified appraiser as long as the work they produce is more reliable than other alternatives. Look to simplify your business practices by understanding and using new technology to help you be more efficient. Learn new forms of valuation, reach into new markets and continue to grow.
Diversify your appraisal practice
There are many different valuation services that can be provided. Get involved with the Realtor associations, teach classes, speak at luncheons, provide simplified services to brokers, agents and lenders. There is also a lot of non-lender work that can be found through referrals. Estate valuations, financial planning and other industries can have use for your services. Work to gain competence in a new field and expand your appraisal practice.
Project a professional image
Many appraisers have been in the industry for a long time and have maintained a simple web presence. In this day and age the importance of a professional, clean, and trustworthy online image cannot be stressed enough. Upgrade your web presence, use business cards, and be kind and courteous with people. You never know when the next opportunity will come along through someone you meet.
One of the most important aspects of projecting a professional image is being transparency. Many clients and homeowners get frustrated with an appraiser when the appraiser won’t answer questions or return phone calls. Remember most people don’t know what is involved in the appraisal process. Answer questions and talk to them about the appraisal process.
It is important to note that you are appraising, what most people consider to be, their life savings. Don’t be offended when someone questions your opinion of value. If you were about to purchase or sell a $100,000 car, you too would ask lots of questions to ensure you’re getting the most value out of it. Be professional and kind. This helps build your network and grow your business.