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Stepping out

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mherzan

Thread Starter
Freshman Member
Joined
Mar 20, 2007
Professional Status
Appraiser Trainee
State
California
I began appraising 3 1/2-years ago and have trained under two MAIs in Southern California. My experience is exclusively with commercial property types (i.e. retail, industrial, office, multifamily) doing complete narrative appraisals for lenders. I have a BS from the U of M and all my appraisal course work is through the Appraisal Institute. I have Certified General License from the State of California.

I am considering stepping out and establishing my own business. I am looking for feedback from seasoned professionals as to how I would best start the process. I am looking for honest feedback on how I would best transition from working for others to soliciting and providing valuation services to others. Do I have enough experience? How have others made the transition from trainee to trainer, from dependence on another appraiser for assignments to developing my own client base?

Your feedback is requested.

Stepping out.
 

AnonApprsr

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 21, 2008
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Massachusetts
Get a client(s) first, before stepping out. Unless you're already financially independent, then it's ok to step out and then worry about receiving paying work.
 

Michigan CG

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Nov 1, 2006
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Michigan
Let me get this straight.

You work for two MAI appraisers. Most appraisers would kill for that.

You are exposed to challenging assignments, and most likely learn something every day. And you are thinking about leaving them?

You are thinking about leaving after 3 1/2 years.....WHY?

Don't you think that with only 3 1/2 years you have a lot more to learn based on the experience you have gotten in the last 3 1/2 years?

You are leaving to become a ho-hum appraiser instead of grasping an opportunity that 80% of appraisers would kill for.

Do you really think you are going to find clients to hire you with the types of assignments that MAI appraisers get?

No, you will become a starving commercial appraiser who can't revert to residential because you weren't trained in it.

You are thinking about throwing a lifetime opportunity away after only 3 1/2 years. I would wait another 5 years.
 

TC

Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Pennsylvania
Unless you are being treated unfairly, I would stick it out. The kind of work they are doing you probably won't see on your own.

TC
 

mherzan

Thread Starter
Freshman Member
Joined
Mar 20, 2007
Professional Status
Appraiser Trainee
State
California
Thank you TC.

I am not being treated unfairly. But I am working very hard for my fee split. I have been told that I am fortunate that I could get work with an MAI. But these days, the assignments are not coming fast enough and I need to provide for my family. I need to fill in the down times with clients of my own. I would like to round out my experience with residential work. Do you have a preference for form software - ACI, Clickforms or AlaMode?
 

ghrousseau

Member
Joined
May 5, 2006
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
Virginia
Let me get this straight.

You work for two MAI appraisers. Most appraisers would kill for that.

You are exposed to challenging assignments, and most likely learn something every day. And you are thinking about leaving them?

You are thinking about leaving after 3 1/2 years.....WHY?

Don't you think that with only 3 1/2 years you have a lot more to learn based on the experience you have gotten in the last 3 1/2 years?

You are leaving to become a ho-hum appraiser instead of grasping an opportunity that 80% of appraisers would kill for.

Do you really think you are going to find clients to hire you with the types of assignments that MAI appraisers get?

No, you will become a starving commercial appraiser who can't revert to residential because you weren't trained in it.

You are thinking about throwing a lifetime opportunity away after only 3 1/2 years. I would wait another 5 years.

If you have done your course work and you are working for MAI's then why not become a candidate yourself? As others have said there are many who would love to trade their current situation for yours.

I'm adding to what Timothy said of course :)
 
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AnonApprsr

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 21, 2008
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Massachusetts
Thank you TC.

I am not being treated unfairly. But I am working very hard for my fee split. I have been told that I am fortunate that I could get work with an MAI. But these days, the assignments are not coming fast enough and I need to provide for my family. I need to fill in the down times with clients of my own. I would like to round out my experience with residential work. Do you have a preference for form software - ACI, Clickforms or AlaMode?
SFREP - Appraise-It - Although I just recently found out they are owned by AI, it's still a great piece of software.
 

JT1974

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 16, 2006
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Wisconsin
Tim Evans hit the nail on the head.

You are NOT EVEN CLOSE to being ready to go out on your own.
 

Doug in NC

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
North Carolina
I agree with the others. If you think your workload is too low right now, imagine how bad it could get if you leave and can't find any work for yourself.

I wish I had gotten my start working for a couple of MAIs. I'm limited to doing residential work in a stagnant economy. Maybe you aren't getting paid a lot for what you are currently doing, but I would bet you are getting an invaluable education. The experience you are getting will pay big dividends in the future when you are ready to go out on your own.
 

leelansford

Elite Member
Joined
Mar 29, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Illinois
Thank you TC.

I am not being treated unfairly. But I am working very hard for my fee split. I have been told that I am fortunate that I could get work with an MAI. But these days, the assignments are not coming fast enough and I need to provide for my family. I need to fill in the down times with clients of my own. I would like to round out my experience with residential work. Do you have a preference for form software - ACI, Clickforms or AlaMode?

Do you have the opportunity to continue your affiliation with the two MAIs and also work on your own? If the answer is "yes", it looks like a no-brainer as to what you should do.

Most seriously...if other than residential is your area of interest, you may want to give STRONG consideration to working toward the MAI designation.

If you are looking toward residential work, be prepared to run yourself ragged trying to satisfy AMC clients.
 
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