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Top 3 books you would have a newbie read....???

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Jason Cowan

Sophomore Member
Joined
Dec 12, 2002
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
Virginia
I need some advice from all of you well seasoned veterans. I am working as an assessor for my local county government, and am trying to break into the fee world part-time. What are the some good books that you would recommend for someone in my situation, or any newbie for that matter. I am on a tight budget so I need to get the most bang for my buck. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.
 

USPAP Compliant

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
North Carolina
Does your county allow tax dept. employees to appraise for the public on the side? This is a BIG conflict of interest. My couny specificly prohibits tax office appraisers from doing any fee appraisal work while employed by the county.
 

Jo Ann Meyer Stratton

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Arizona
As a former ad valorem appraiser I agree with Bob. The two are a conflict of interest. While a county employee, take all the IAAO courses you can get, their textbook is an excellant basic resources. I still pull out my 1975 copy occasionally! Take any courses offered by your state, city, county regarding ad valorem appraising. Get a copy of the 2003 USPAP off the Appraisal Foundation website, make copies of the Q & A from their website. All of that becomes your library. Find the web site for your state's appraisal board, read and study any materials they offer. As an ad valorem appraiser you will be able to develop a good base of knowledge for years down the road, if you decide to go into fee appraising. But I strongly suggest to not do both at the same time!
 
Joined
Jan 16, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Montana
Jason:

Appraisers must be first, good researchers. On this forum, the subject of books has been widely covered. At the top of the screen is the search button. Just list "books", perhaps confine your search to this forum, and you will have lots of suggestions and input.

In answer to your question, I don't think there is a good answer. It is not just books you will need but more of a library consisting of books, pamphlets, downloads, public info and such. This, for instance is a reprint of one of my posts on this subject.

Each new appraiser should have a library add to it as budget permits. At the beginning, the following are essential.

Up to date copy of State Laws, Regulations concerning real estate appraising. Copies of State Appraisal Board newsletters each month provide excellent guidance for new appraisers.

Copy of USPAP and the Q & A book issued by the Appraisal Board

Copy of the ANSI measuring guide or the download from the North Carolina Appraisal Board on property measurement ( I looked for this recently and could not find it. Anyone with news of this, I would like to here about it)

The Fannie MAE Selling Guide- This resource is relevant to the underwriting standards of most home loans.

The HUD 4150.2 Hand Book. This contains very useful information for the new appraiser, particularly the protocol on filling out a URAR. It answers directly the information required for each section of the URAR.

The Appraisal of Real Estate-Twelfth Edition-Appraisal Institute

Software handbooks. Software manuals should be printed for the software and drawing programs. Most other software such as mapping programs have easily read helps screens to assist the beginner.

Localized information consisting of maps, zoning regulations, flood zone data and local environmental data.

The handling of building cost guides is in flux at this writing as Marshall Swift is promoting a computerized cost guide substitute for the residential cost guide. Just announced is an Internet cost guide. There are other cost guides that in a particular market may be more preferable. The trainee, however, will be more efficient if they have their own copy and make a habit of maintaining updates.

I also recommend every appraiser, have a computerized accounting system. Install a copy of QuickBooks. The Handbook for QuickBooks 2002 has 500 pages and makes interesting reading explaining an accounting system It will help you stay on the right track running your business.

Then, as budget permits add books. Of all the books, one of the most recommended is Appraising the Tough Ones: Creative Ways to Value Complex Residential Properties by Frank E. Harrison, MAI, SRA and available through the Appraisal Institute. For the commercial appraiser, a comprehensive book with sections on market analysis, highest and best use; the application of cost, sales comparison, and income capitalization approaches, I recommend Market Analysis for Valuation Appraisals by Stephen F. Faning, MAI, Terry Grissom, MAI, and Thomas D. Pearson, MAI also available from the Appraisal Institute.

Other Books to add to this list are:

Residential Sales Comparison Approach-Mark R. Ratterman, MAI, SRA-Appraisal Institute

A Guide To Appraisal Valuation Modeling, Mark R. Linne, MAI, CAE, Steven Kane, George Dell MAI, SRA-Appraisal Institute

Marketing for Appraisers-Ann ORourke, MAI, SRPA, SRA-Appraisal Today

Appraising Residential Properties- Appraisal Institute

Real Estate Damage- Randall Bell-MAI- Appraisal Institute

The Elements of Style-William Strunk Jr. and E.B.White- Macmillan Publishing

And last but not least, one book that will constantly inspire you. Appraising is a tough business and reading this book might be just the breakthrough toward a great career in appraising.

The ZEN and the Art of Making a Living, Laurence G. Boldt. Penguin/Arkana Publisher. He says, Work is more than a matter of keeping busy all day. It must feed the soul as well.

Then don't just read appraisal books. Follow your interests and read to relax, to learn, to be inspired, to be thrilled and to be confounded. A really good appraiser knows the world around him or her, is in touch with its people, their habits, their wants and dislikes. Reading makes us recognize why people buy and sell and understanding that alone is what we do better than others.
 

Mike Garrett RAA

Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Colorado
Good question, and welcome to the forum. Won't comment about working in the assessor's office and doing fee work on the side because it varies from state to state and county to county.

Now my Top 5

1. USPAP 2003
2. The Language of Real Estate Appraisal
3. Henry Harrison's guide to the URAR Appraisal Report
4. Fannie Mae Selling Guide (presently out of print)
5. Fundamentals of Real Estate Appraisal
 

Mike Garrett RAA

Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Colorado
Thanks JoAnne, I still have two hard copies.
 

Jo Ann Meyer Stratton

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Arizona
Are the one that went into effect 6/30/2002? There are some changes. I have the hard copies going back to 1990, interesting comparing the changes through the years.
 

Mike Simpson

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 30, 2002
There goes Doug giving away valuable information for free again (he needs an agent).

Mike G. listed the best books (in my opinion), and I'd only add one:

Napolean Hill's: Think & Grow Rich - unbelievable motivational book on achieving any goal your heart desires. I credit Mr. Hill's writings for many of my (self-perceived) successes.

-Mike
 

Mike Garrett RAA

Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Colorado
I didn't list any motivational books, only appraisal specific. Think and Grow Rich is a wonderful book. Guess we could add the bible too. This business does put the fear of God in some.
 
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