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FAQs

For Users of Appraisal Services

  • What is an appraiser?

    An appraiser is one who is in the business of estimating the worth or value or quality of property.  Appraisers may specialize in one or more areas of practice, called disciplines:

    Business Valuation - The valuation of businesses including all tangible and intangible assets.  Business valuations are typically used for transaction support (fairness opinions), financial reporting (fair market value opinions), tax compliance, financing, strategic planning and other purposes.
    Machinery and Technical Specialists - The valuation of business and personal machinery, equipment and other technical assets, typically via market or liquidation value appraisals for various purposes such as sale, acquisition, ad valorem tax, eminent domain, collateralization, insurance or residual forecasting.
    Real Property Appraisal - The valuation of real estate. Real Ppoperty appraisers can choose specialties to practice within such as residential, commercial and agricultural property.
    Personal Property Appraisal - All types of personal property such as fine arts, antiques and a wide variety of others.
    Gems and Jewelry Appraisal - The valuation of gemstones and jewelry for insurance, estate tax, equitable distribution, donation, dissolution of marriage, bankruptcy, sale and other purposes. Insurance appraisals prepared by most retailers bear little resemblance to a designated gem and jewelry appraiser.
    Appraisal Review - Focus on the review of appraisal reports prepared by others.
  • How do I determine if I need an appraiser?

    There is a wide array of clients that use appraisals such as lenders, insurance companies, attorneys, governments, museums and tax assessors.  There are a wide variety of reasons that drive demand for independent appraisals - some are driven by law and others are driven by need for assurance, risk mitigation, impartially and objectivity.

    A professional appraiser delivers unbiased insight and valuation conclusions, and often is the only independent party in a subject engagement, whether it is a transaction, litigation dispute, strategic planning decision, etc.

    If you are seeking guidance as to whether an appraiser is appropriate for your situation, or if you are looking for support in assessing qualifications or fit, feel free to contact us.

  • What is an appraisal designation?

    An appraisal designation is awarded by one of the professional trade organizations that represent appraisers.  Designations are awarded after an appraiser has completed a specific course of appraiser training through an organization and other program requirements, coupled with meeting experience and other requirements.

    Each organization offers multiple designations in differing fields or specialties.  The ASA offers the longest-standing and most extensive appraisal designation qualification process in the industry.  Learn more about the ASA-accreditation process.

  • How do I assess an appraiser's qualifications?

    Because it is up to the consumer to ultimately select and hire a qualified appraiser, a question that often arises in selecting an appraiser is - how do I assess the quality, capability and suitability of an appraiser for my specific need?

    Although there are several appraisal designations, provided by various organizations, the ASA-designated appraiser is much more. SoCal Appraisers - with their ASA accreditation, education, valuation experience and adherence to ethical practices - make all the difference when consumers need independent, credible opinions of value on property.  In short, our ASA-accredited appraisers are valuation experts, and the meticulous ASA accreditation and SoCal Appraisers membership process ensures that our appraisers are accurate, impartial and credible. They are educated and experienced in their fields and are respected members of their Southern California communities. They can deliver independent valuations that assure your property is appraised at its fairmarket value.  Learn more about SoCal Appraisers' rigorous ASA-accreditation and member selection process.

  • What is the American Society for Appraisers?

    The American Society of Appraisers is an international organization of appraisal professionals, international in structure, it is self-supporting and independent. The oldest and only major appraisal organization representing all of the disciplines of appraisal specialists, the society originated in 1936 and incorporated in 1952.  ASA's headquarters is in the metropolitan Washington, D.C., area.

    It is one of eight major appraisal societies that, in 1987, founded the Appraisal Foundation, a national nonprofit organization created to establish uniform criteria for professional appraisers. Since 1989 The Appraisal Foundation has been recognized by the U.S. Congress as the source for the development and promulgation of appraisal standards and qualifications.

    Each accredited member of the American Society of Appraisers has earned a professional designation in one or more specialized areas of appraisal. To receive the accreditation, the appraiser must pass intensive written examinations, submit representative appraisal reports for peer review and be screened for his or her ethical behavior.  All accredited Socal Appraisers members hold the ASA-credential.

    Interestingly, the origination of the American Society of Appraisers connects back to SoCal Appraisers strong historical leadership - learn more.

  • What is the Appraisal Foundation and USPAP?

    The Appraisal Foundation is a non-profit educational organization dedicated to the promulgation of professional appraisal standards and appraiser qualifications for all appraisal disciplines.  The Foundation accomplishes this mission through the work of two independent Boards, the Appraiser Qualifications Board (AQB) and the Appraisal Standards Board (ASB).

    The Foundation, through its Appraisal Standards Board, publishes the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP), which is the generally accepted set of performance standards for appraisers. It is these standards that are enforced by state governments and various professional appraisal organizations. In addition, the minimum qualifications for certain appraisal disciplines are established by the Appraiser Qualifications Board of the Foundation.

 

For Prospective Appraisers

  • What skills are required to become an appraiser?

    In essence, all appraisers must have good analytical skills and work well with numbers. In addition, appraisers spend much time interacting with clients and writing reports, so good communications skills are a must.  Of course, experience and formal training are key to developing appraisal competency and expertise.

    If you are interested in exploring the possibility of becoming an appraiser or getting your ASA-accreditation, feel free to contact us.

  • How do I become a designated appraiser?

    You will need to contact a professional appraisal organization such as the ASA that represents appraisers regarding membership and the course of action for designation. The ASA is the longest standing professional appraisal organization.

    The process of becoming an appraiser differs according to the various appraisal disciplines. Appraisers are required to have a certain number of hours of education and experience.  If an appraiser wishes to become “designated” by an appraisal organization, she/he must also pass a comprehensive examination.

    Learn more about the ASA-accreditation process.  If you are interested in exploring the possibility of becoming an appraiser or getting your ASA-accreditation, feel free to contact us

  • What is the outlook for designated appraisers?

    There is a wide array of clients that use appraisals such as lenders, insurance companies, attorneys, governments, museums and tax assessors.  According to an ASA survey released at the society's 22nd annual Advanced Business Valuation Conference in 2003, more and more companies are hiring ASA-accredited members, for example, to perform valuations, despite recent economic uncertainty.

    Many ASA members are experiencing growth in their practices as companies of all sizes increasingly seek credible, independent valuations of their businesses and financial assets. Nearly 49 percent of survey respondents believe that the Sarbanes-Oxley legislation, which changed the financial reporting landscape for financial professionals, has changed the way they do business.

    More than 20 percent identified the legislation as the trend or issue having the greatest impact on their practice. Growth in demand for other appraisal disciplines is also strong and growing.

    Learn more about the ASA-accreditation process.  If you are interested in exploring the possibility of becoming an appraiser or getting your ASA-accreditation, feel free to contact us

  • Should I consider appraisal as a career?

    Being an appraiser can be a very rewarding career, intellectually, personally and professionally. Appraisal can also be a financially rewarding career option, especially for those that hold appraisal designations.

    A recent survey shows that annual compensation for those who hold ASA's highest accreditation, Accredited Senior Appraiser, is more than 33 percent higher that of other appraisers. As just one reference of career strength, a recent ASA member survey indicates that an ASA in the Business Valuation discipline shows that average personal annual compensation is approximately $128,000, based on 2003 data. Compensation ranges overall progressively match experience levels and level of designations.

    Learn more about the ASA-accreditation process.  If you are interested in exploring the possibility of becoming an appraiser or getting your ASA-accreditation, feel free to contact us

  • Why should I join a professional appraisal organization?

    A professional appraisal organization, such as the ASA, provides appraisers with the opportunity to network with other professionals, to keep abreast of pertinent issues such as regulatory changes and to receive continuing education.

    SoCal Appraisers holds an open door policy for prospective members, whether they be students, non-ASA appraisers or professionals in other fields that are exploring becoming an appraiser.  We welcome you to contact us to attend one of our events or chat with one of our credentialed appraisers for insights on becoming an appraiser or getting your ASA-accreditation.

    Learn more about the ASA-accreditation process.

  • Can I get involved with SoCal Appraisers?

    Yes.  If you are considering a career in appraisal, one of the best ways to understand the industry and identify opportunities is to connect with experienced experts in the field.  SoCal Appraisers represents the oldest, largest and one of the most diversified bases of appraisal expertise among all American Society of Appraisers chapters. By getting involved, you will have a unique opportunity to build relationships and gain insight that will help in your career decisions and future professional network.

    SoCal Appraisers holds an open door policy for prospective members, whether they be students, non-ASA appraisers or professionals in other fields that are exploring becoming an appraiser.  We welcome you to contact us to learn more about us and opportunities to get involved, attend one of our events or chat with one of our credentialed appraisers for insights on becoming an appraiser or getting your ASA-accreditation.

    Learn more about the ASA-accreditation process.

 

Contact

ASA-LA, c/o DeborahAnn Marshall
PO Box 1877
Santa Clarita, CA 91386-1877