If you're just starting out, it may be tough to justify any additional costs to what you are already shelling out. However, the top of the line service level will give you an idea of the best that's available and you can change to something less than that if you decide you don't need all the bells and whistles. If you feel as Bemis does, that it's "only an appraisal", you may need only the minimum product on the market, or, indeed no software at all. Of course, he makes a very good point about shopping around.
Just as with your other business decisions, do your research (like asking this forum!), put the pencil to work to see if the cost might justify the return on your investment and go with your analysis. Time is the only thing that will tell you if you made the right decision.
If you are not going to use the available features, then a full blown system is not very economical. If you, like me, are slowly reducing the mortgage appraising and increasing the narrative reporting, a pretty bare bones product is good enough. My goal is to drop my Toolbox support after next year and to eliminate form appraisals from my business by 2004. By that time I should be in the market for a new computer and will load WinSketch and WordPerfect 1X (whatever it there) and other than graphics programs will have no specialized programs.