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Narrative help

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Vermonter

Thread Starter
Senior Member
Joined
Mar 21, 2007
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Vermont
Ok, writing has never been my strong point. Neither is typing. To be honest I struggle with my comments, addendum, market analysis, etc. The data is there, I just have a hard time getting it to sound professional and organized and flow nicely. I would say 50% of the time I spend on my appraisals is in the narrative portions.

Since going from working with mostly tract housing to more rural/complex stuff, the canned content just doesn't cut it anymore.

So, any suggestions on how to you improve your narrative skills?

[besides going back to college and actually paying attention]
 

CANative

Elite Member
Joined
Jun 18, 2003
Professional Status
Retired Appraiser
State
California
I have the same problems Robert.
 

Kevin A. Spellman

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 30, 2003
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Massachusetts
If you have the privilege to time and can read your report that next day this helps me. Use Microsoft Word and then copy and paste into the form report if you’re using a window base system.
 

Vermonter

Thread Starter
Senior Member
Joined
Mar 21, 2007
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Vermont
What's worse is I just received a copy of a competitors file and it had 7 pages of narrative that was scary good for 20% less than what I would've charged.

Nothing like a shot to the ego to get you motivated.
 

Dontbethatguy

Freshman Member
Joined
Sep 5, 2007
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Florida
I find great inspiration from reading Henry Harrison's commentary. It may not always fit, but the smoke and mirrors and or straight to the point verbage is there and it's a good start.
 

leelansford

Elite Member
Joined
Mar 29, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Illinois
Ok, writing has never been my strong point...
So, any suggestions on how to you improve your narrative skills?

[besides going back to college and actually paying attention]

I had the answer for you until I read your final sentence. Seriously.

My suggestion would be to complete a college-level composition course. There's no magical way to become a good writer without some "pain" involved.
 

Smokey Bear

Elite Member
Joined
Dec 8, 2004
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
California
What's worse is I just received a copy of a competitors file and it had 7 pages of narrative that was scary good for 20% less than what I would've charged.

Nothing like a shot to the ego to get you motivated.
You should be copying the style of what that person wrote, if you liked it. Also, go to Amazon and get an old (1980's) copy of Style: 10 Lessons in Clarity and Grace by Williams. Awesome book, and I got all A's in my writing courses in undergrad and law school using that book.
 

Jim Bartley

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 20, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Virginia
Sometimes it helps to just jot down a few key elements that you want to touch on and then write one or sentences on each one. Once you do that it's not too hard to organize into a paragraph.
 
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