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  #1  
Old 05-01-2004, 12:58 PM
allison lucas allison lucas is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Pacifica, CA

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Hello to all!

I'm just about one year into this biz and I feel that I'm performing quite well. Coming from an art background, I've grasped these intangible understandings of the market and our role as appraisers successfully. That has probably been the most beneficial aspect of my process thus far. Moreover, I'm technically sound and have proven to be fabulous support to my mentor. All in all, I'm proud of my achievements and I'm developing confidence in this field.

So far I've obtained all of my clients on my own due to the help of our internet appraisal directories. However, I've learned that brokers are merely fair weather friends and that doesn't leave me feeling less insecure as I'd like to.

I'm looking at this point to build clientele. I'd like to have two weeks of work set up in advance with an average of 4 SFR appraisals a week. I realize I might be dreaming with this fantasy, but still strive to meet this goal. I've been sending letters to trust attorneys; real estate values are atypically high so inheritance of a home usually results in paying the inheritance tax. Other than that I've figured I could solicit divorce attorneys but I wonder, "do I really want to get in the middle of that??!"

So what do you guys do to keep your phone ringing? What did you all do before the invent of online appraisal directories?? Do any of you meet similar goals???

Thanks in advance!
Allison.
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Old 05-01-2004, 03:41 PM
Ryan Nyberg's Avatar
Ryan Nyberg Ryan Nyberg is offline
 
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Location: Washington
State: Washington
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Well I only use one directory and pay for that listing. Which brings in 2-4 a month and gotten me one steady client 4-8 a month. Other than that it is just hitting the pavement. With less than one year in the business. Have you talked to your mentor prior to contacting attornies? Understand your mentor would have to go in with you if or when you were subponead(sp) for court room testimony. Does your mentor have experince with attornies in divorce, litigation, or estate appraisal work? Getting four a week just means contacting potential clients until they come. Remember appraising is nothing more than a feast or famine business this is cyclic in nature. You can never really count on work or payments one week to the next.
  #3  
Old 05-01-2004, 06:34 PM
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Tim Hicks (Texas) Tim Hicks (Texas) is offline
 
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Location: Crowley
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You can offer to do appraisals for free, that is about only way to guarantee continued work-flow. :lol:

Seriously, the hardest part of this business is to meet, impress, service and cultivate good clients. Then you have to weed the bad ones out and hope the good ones stay in business, don't sell out to AMC's, don't get bought by the big companies or dump you for being honest. I honestly say there is no guarantees you will have the same clients now that you will have ten years from now. If you do, it will be out of respect and luck. Mostly luck.
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  #4  
Old 05-01-2004, 07:01 PM
allison lucas allison lucas is offline
 
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Location: Pacifica, CA

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Thanks you two for your input.

And no thanks on the thoughts of working for free

I can only continue to forge ahead, avoid discouragement and continue to get my name out there.
  #5  
Old 05-02-2004, 10:43 AM
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Charlotte Dixon Charlotte Dixon is offline
 
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Location: Delaware
State: Delaware
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Allison,

I admire your style and determination!

You will be good at this! My daughter came from the fashion design industry, and produces thorough reports with ease and great detail, as you artsy people do so well!

Rather than look for ANY client, research the client to the best of your ability as though they were applying for a job with you! Accept only the best, and if you don't like the way they work, talk or pay, fire them. My client base goes back 16 years....still have the same ones, and I have tons of mortgage work, which is what I like to do. Once you get good clients, you must cultivate them, as was said. By that, I do not mean "hit the number". When I receive an order from them, I call or fax to thank them, and give an estimate as to when the work will be completed. I take some of the loan officers to lunch or dinner, especially after I do an appraisal for them and the opinion of value is low, killing his/her deal. Those valued clients will be your bread and butter for years to come.

Good Luck,
Charlotte
  #6  
Old 05-02-2004, 11:55 AM
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Ryan Nyberg Ryan Nyberg is offline
 
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Charlotte gave some real good advice. Keep with those clients develop a working relationship. I have one LO who has been with me for 2 years now. Sometimes you have to go the extra mile. I spent 2 hours on the phone one day explaining the entire appraisal process to him. He appreciated it and continues to send me work. Now he is a LO as well as a RE agent. He calls and asks my opinion on a house about repairs or remodels prior to listing the property. I have helped him run CMA's over the phone. No I do not give a value he arives at that. Although he is only a 1-2 a month client. I appreciate his business because much like me he wants to sleep at night knowing that he helped someone not just made a commission. He is the lowest paid LO in his office but he takes his time with the clients. So in his case I spend the extra time working with him. Even though he is not a high volume client I know that he will be around for years to come. And that he does refer me to other LOs. Even though the other LOs in his branch will not use me cause I don't hit the number for them.
  #7  
Old 05-04-2004, 02:01 PM
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Doug in NC Doug in NC is offline
 
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State: North Carolina
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Although you sound a little over-confident in your appraisal abilities (I was not confident to go "out on my own" until I had at least 5 years of experience as an appraiser), I wish I had someone as ambitious as you to market for my company. Go-getters like you seem very hard to come by. Most of the appraisers I have ever worked with just want to sit back and take the orders when they come in. As appraisal work decreases, appraisers are going to find they will need to work harder than ever at marketing their business - instead of sitting on their laurels waiting for the phone to ring.

It is a good idea to consider appraisal opportunities outside of the mortgage lending arena. IMO that sector of the appraisal market has a very bleak future. I see the future of mortgage lending as this: faster turn-time requirements, more short forms, lower fees, huge competition for work, and continued higher pressure to meet pre-determined values. Good luck!
  #8  
Old 05-04-2004, 02:32 PM
allison lucas allison lucas is offline
 
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Location: Pacifica, CA

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Thanks again to all for your responses...

I'm interested now in learning more about 'cultivating' my relationships with the brokers that I can sense have their ducks in a row. Most of the LOs I work with are out of the area. Any ideas on ways to maintain a long distance relationship?

Also, I'm very much motivated to develop business outside of the loan arena and feel that my location has potential to give me that opportunity. I've sent out many letters to estate attorneys/tax accountants and after some research, I've learned that most don't directly refer their clients to appraisers. Any thoughts/ideas on how to break through this?

Just brainstorming :idea:

Allison.
  #9  
Old 05-04-2004, 04:49 PM
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Kate Kate is offline
 
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Location: The LIVE FREE OR DIE State!!!
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I actually have a family friend attorney who does divorce, and estate work. I am planning to take a class at the AI called Litigation Appraising:Specialized Topics and Applications. But as someone on this forum who I respect said privately to me, it is no place for newbies, as i am one. The more I learn the more I agree. I am going to hold off on my attorney friend until I know I will be ready. Maybe this class will be helpful.
  #10  
Old 05-04-2004, 05:31 PM
allison lucas allison lucas is offline
 
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How would providing the service of determining a value for tax purposes vary from determining a value for loan purposes? In other words, why would a newbie suffice in the latter and not the former?
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