The number of active real estate appraisers has continued to decline for the seventh straight year, though the pace has slowed, even as real estate agents revive complaints about low appraisals killing purchase contracts.
The Appraisal institute reported today that the number of appraisers fell less than 1 percent in the first half of 2014, lower than the average annual decrease of 2.6 percent over the past six years.
The Institute found that as of June 30, the total number of active real estate appraisers in the U.S. stood at 80,500, down from 81,050 on Dec. 31, 2013. However, the rate of decrease could rise sharply over the next five to 10 years due to retirements, reduced numbers of new people entering the appraisal profession, economic factors and greater use of data analysis technologies, Appraisal Institute research found.
“As appraisers leave the profession, the Appraisal Institute is preparing the next generation through its education, publications and other training,” said Appraisal Institute President Ken P. Wilson, MAI, SRA. “As the real estate valuation profession’s leader, we will continue to ensure that we are preparing tomorrow’s appraisers today.”
The June Realtor’s Confidence Index report from the National Association of Realtors reported that real estate agents are complaining that appraisals continue to slow and kill contracts. “Appraisals have again shown up as a major issue. In particular, there was concern that current appraisals do not reflect changing and improving market conditions. Appraised values were reported as coming in too low. In addition, there was major concern in some cases about the lack of knowledge of local conditions by the appraisers,” said the monthly NAR report
Complaints about appraisals declined significantly earlier this year when several reforms were enacted, including one that required appraisers to take into account local market trends and another that required lenders to inform mortgage applicants that they can receive a free copy of whatever appraisals, reviews, computer valuations and other data are used in the transaction. The disclosure is required “promptly” after the appraisal report is completed, or three days before your loan closes, whichever is earlier. The lender will have to inform you of your new rights within three business days after receipt of your mortgage application.