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Is Distance Training Really That Bad?

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Patti Hunter

Thread Starter
Freshman Member
Joined
Jul 22, 2002
I've seen some negative comments on this board about distance training for the initial licensure requirements.

Given my plan to pass my California test BEFORE I move to California in 2 months (so I can look for work when I get there), my choices are rather limited. There doesn't seem to be any classroom training available for a California license here in Nevada. Distance training appears to be my best shot.

Other than the lack of networking with other students, what challenges am I facing? I've always been a quick study, and usually do quite well on written tests. Plus, my background in banking, home building, and real estate office administration should help with comprehension of the material.

I'd appreciate your comments on my plan, both pros & cons. I can take it - after working with 80+ Realtors, I have VERY broad shoulders.

Thanks in advance for your help,
 

BenLuby

Senior Member
Joined
May 28, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Georgia
Distance training would depend a lot on the distance. Right now, I drive just over an hour one way to work, and another hour home every night, average about 10 to 14 hours a day, six days a week. Unless we're busy. I worked while I went to school in Atlanta, too. The drive to school was just under two hours one way. I happen to live in the middle of nowhere right next to nothing, but I like the small town environment. Still, I have to make a living, so I do the drive. Whether or not you can do it is personal. I AM going to be CR, and I am going to be good at it. One thing to remember is this: the only person who knows if you can really do it is yourself. If you have a habit of quitting something, then you probably will not do well. If you run the horse until it drops, then you will probably succeed. But make sure this is what you want. I have discovered, since getting my registration, that this is a job where you are the only person who can push you to succeed. Read this forum regularly. I do. It is like an e-college, and there are a lot of good sources of information on it. And don't be scared to ask a question. You'll get good answers. Good luck.

You only fail when you quit trying.
 

wyecoyote

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Gvmt Agency, FNMA, HUD, VA etc.
State
Washington
Patti,

I don't know the situation in California but from my own past experince, is that it is tough to find a job on the move. I tried this after being licensed and even then it was tough to find a job. Didn't find a gurantee until I was moved and here. Would suggest that you begin reading the local want adds a couple of weeks before you move then send a resume to them. Sounds like California requires a trainie license prior to begining work. This to me IMHO is that the classess really don't teach you anything about appraising. The only thing I really got out of the classess was a headache from the new paint in the room and a flatter wallet. But then again I had two great mentors (ma and pa appraisal shop). If you have read the past posts you probably have and idea how difficult it is to find a mentor. As was explained to me: when you have the time to train someone you have no work for them and when you have the work you don't have the time. Keep your head up high and expect a lot of turn downs and put offs prior to getting a job. Not all can be as lucky as some out there that stumble into the profesion because their parents were appraisers or others like myself that got offered a job because I asked the appraiser, who came to look at a house that I was working on at the time, a couple of questions.

Ryan
 

Patti Hunter

Thread Starter
Freshman Member
Joined
Jul 22, 2002
Ryan,

Thanks for the info. Yes, California issues a trainee license, so I know I'll need to find a mentor. I agree that this will probably by my biggest challenge.

I definitely hear you about the initial classes not really teaching a lot about appraisal - it's the same here with Real Estate classes. All they really teach is what the agent needs to know to pass the exam. We then spend another 6-12 months teaching them the real business.

That's the main reason I want to get the classes finished before I move. I hate the idea of spending 6-12 weeks sitting in a classroom, when I can accomplish the same result with on-line and correspondence study. Once I'm there, I want to spend my time actively finding a mentor, and learning the business.

I know it'll be harder to get into the business in a new area than it would where I've lived for 20 years, but I don't really have a choice (not if I want to stay married for another 26 years, that is!). My husband was promoted and has been living in Sacramento since December. We've been doing the weekend commutes since then, and it's getting very OLD.

I've been watching the Help Wanteds for several months now, and there are actually jobs posted - surprize, surprize! And they'll even talk to trainees! Plus, with my real estate background, I have a few contacts and leads already.

The market is rapidly growing in that area, so the challenge could be finding someone who has the time to train me. I'm a quick study, and fairly independent, so we'll see...

I'm anticipating some closed doors and turn-downs. But I can be thick skinned when I have to and not easily discouraged.

Thanks for the advice and ideas. I'll keep checking.
 

cgjerdetu

Junior Member
Joined
Jan 29, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
California
Patti

I was in a similar situation several years ago. I moved from out of state to California before I was licensed and wanted to be sure I satisfied California's requirements. I took my initial coursework through correspondence and it worked out OK in my situation -- however:

1. I had previously obtained a Real Estate Salesperson license and took the required coursework for that license at a local community college.

2. I had about two years experience as support staff to a small appraisal office, where I learned a lot about data gathering, verification and data input.

3. I had about five years experience in mortgage banking (again in a support role, but one where I got to see a great deal of appraisals completed by a variety of appraisers).

I have since supplemented the distance coursework with a good number of classroom appraisal courses.

If I had the opportunity to do it over, I would take the basic coursework through the Appraisal Institute -- even if it meant travelling to another part of the country for a couple of weeks.


If you are looking to do residential work I would highly recommend the institute's course 210 (Residential Case Study) in addition to the two intro appraisal courses (110 and 120) and the intro to USPAP class. Even if you took an institute course in another state it should count for California.

Carolyn
 

msking

Freshman Member
Joined
Feb 24, 2002
Patti:

I took the 90 hours of required courses from a commercial school, Anthony. At the time, I had to take them in Oakland, but near the end of my course work, Anthony began offering their courses in Sacramento.

The classes are held on Saturday, from 9 am until 5 pm. They schedule them in such a way that you can take all four courses one right after the other, Saturday after Saturday after Saturday - ugh! However, it does get the job done.

Anthony Schools is upfront about the fact that the classes teach you to pass the test for your trainee license, not to be an appraiser (your 2000 hours of mentored, on-the-job training does that).

Since your husband is in Sacramento, this might be the ticket for you.

BTW, I believe you can find information about all OREA approved education providers on the OREA website (along with a warning that licenses are taking 90 days now) - you will find Anthony Schools among them (Anthony is headquartered in So. Cal, I believe).

Best of luck!
 

Patti Hunter

Thread Starter
Freshman Member
Joined
Jul 22, 2002
msking,

Thanks for the information. I have been looking at the courses offered by both Anthony Schools and Allied. I'm leaning more towards Allied, as their employees have been more responsive in answering my questions and staying in contact with me. Other than a "form letter" response I received from Anthony 2 months ago, I haven't heard a thing from them.

My main concern is the benefit of classroom training vs. online or correspondence courses. Do you really think the classroom training is more effective?

Thanks in advance for your help.
 

Farm Gal

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2002
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
Nebraska
Patti:

I have to concurr with Carolyn on the concept of the specified AI courses (as opposed to other coursegivers) being very beneficial. I am not saying that you have to take ALL your initial education there, but I would certainly reccomend taking at least one class and see how it compares to many of the 'heres how to pass the test' courses out there... which BTW may or may not provide you sufficient information to pass said test.... 8O

There really is a standard of excellence in AI that cannot be found elsewhere. In addition, attending those classes forces you to actually READ the AI textbooks nearly in their entireity, which most of us cannot manage on our own due to time constraints. I honestly beleive said texts to be the best in the biz. I took the two basic classes in Colorado, and the mountain backdrop helped keep me sane.

I will disclose that I pay annual dues to the Institue. I am no huge beleiver that this is necessary for employment or your future, however the educational differences between most Non Institute 'basic' classes and the Institue classes is a pretty wide gap. Like Grand Canyon at the wide parts 8)

Regards,
Lee Ann
 

George Hatch

Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
California
Just my opinion here,

You'll get no more out of any class offering than what you put in. There is no substitute for doing the work and studying your brains out. As a beginner, you'll want to absorb as much relevant material as you can. With a live class you'll get a lot more than just what's in the course syllabus. The feedback from a live instructor, the occassional war story to illustrate a point, clarification of a written point that the student may not completely understand, repetition of an exercise with different parameters, the give-and-take between the student participants during the breaks, even the networking opportunities. These are all 'extras' that a distance class cannot possibly offer. Granted, a poor instructor will not have as much to offer as a good one, but even so, live instruction is almost always the better deal.

If you have to take a distance class because of the lack of access to a live class in the beginning, that's okay. Just bear in mind that most of the distance courses for beginners are more oriented toward passing a test than really drilling the basics into you. Do yourself a favor and make the time at some point (soon as possible) to retake the course in a live setting.

After you get the basics down, taking CE courses on a distance basis can be a cost effective and convenient option. Even so, some of the more demanding subjects will best be taken from a competent live instructor. For instance, I would never take a USPAP course as a distance course.

George Hatch
 

Patti Hunter

Thread Starter
Freshman Member
Joined
Jul 22, 2002
Thank you all your input.

Since there aren't any beginner classes offered by the northern Nevada or northern California chapters of the Appraisal Institute in the next few months, I'm limited to those classes offered by the commercial schools.

I'll try to enroll in classroom training if possible, and only rely on correspondence courses as a last result.

I definitely see the benefit of continued training and will take advantage of any relevant courses offered in the future.

Thanks again,
 
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