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Trainees can help their cause

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Terrel L. Shields

Thread Starter
Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
May 2, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Arkansas
Trainees can help their cause by putting some serious effort and a little common sense into their work. From the perspective of a supervisor.

1.) It is not my job to buy your software, computer, etc. Find out what you need and buy it yourself. Buy software that is compatible with your super or at least do not expect that super to waste his time trying to figure out how to work your stuff. If he has a CD burner don't bring him a Iomega disk.

2.) Buy your own text books, tight wad. And when you borrow mine BRING EM BACK! Don't make me have to ask for them back 6 mo. later.

3.) Ditto for maps, plat books, flood maps, census tract maps, soil books, etc. I hunted them up....you hunt your own. Expect to invest some cash from the beginning.

4.) Spell check. Proof read. Practice helps. My software has a review feature, try it sometime.

5.) Learn to use a word processor. I have spent not dozens, but hundreds of hours creating and improving a set of templates to make narrative appraisals. I offer them to you for free and what do you do? Whine that you "forgot" how to use them after I have shown you twice in the past 2 months. You just "can't" get the hang of Word Perfect. I did it. Why can't you?

6.) When you say you are coming "right over" with a report for me to proof and sign, please do not be surprised if I am gone an hour later. I am not going to be pinned down in my own office just because you want to piddle around on your way over. I will leave after about 45 minutes just to make you make two trips. If that doesn't break you of sucking eggs, I'll cut it back to leaving within 15 minutes. After all you live 3 miles away.

4.) Don't argue with MY client. When you get blacklisted by that client, it gives me less options in assigning work from that client.

5.) Get a separate phone w/ simple answering/fax machine. I am sick of you not calling back because your 14 year old "forgot" to give you the message, and keeps picking up the reciever when I try to fax. It is your job to keep in touch with ME, not mine to keep in touch with YOU. Cell phones are DIRT CHEAP. You will save that in gas alone and I rarely use over 100 minutes a month. But not only can I get in touch with you, you can call the client about something odd, call the client or borrower if your directions are wrong, call the RE Agent to CONFIRM your sales. And it is real handy if you run out of gas in the Kenwood Reservation 10 miles from town on a 10 degree day.

6.) Don't cherry pick your jobs. Especially since you're taking a week to do one as it is. I am not going to assign you anything you cannot do, but why should I assign you an easy one if you are going to take a week to do it anyway. Monday I and a sub inspected 2 houses. Actually I inspected 2 and she inspected 1. Tuesday I turned in the report on one. Its Friday and not a peep from her yet. A week to do a URAR on a 3 year old house!!! Of course, the lender calls me every day. ...and that 14 yr old is picking up the phone.

7.) Learn what the word "bracket" means. You bring me one more report where the final value is $100K and the highest sales price of a comp is $90K, I am going to strangle you with a 50' tape. One higher, one lower, one as close as you can get. One smaller, one larger, one as close as you can get. One older, one newer, one the same age. The more features you can bracket the better your work will be.

8.) Buy you a copy of the Appraisal of Real Estate and use it for reference. Read it sometimes, you might learn something.
 

xmrdfghap

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
General Public
State
Florida
Another candidate for a sticky note.
Greg
 
Joined
Jan 13, 2002
Professional Status
Retired Appraiser
State
Florida
That was very good Terrel. Bet you could have gone on and on for a few more pages of suggestions. I know I could.

Newbies: Read, Read, Read. All the appraisal books you can get your hands on - your own books. (%#@(!* - too many I bought are missing!) I paid for mine - now it's your turn to pay for your own.

Your mentor has tons of already completed appraisals. USE them to learn from - try to figure out the answers yourself first before going to ask. Set up times where you and your mentor can talk about appraisals and appraisal theories when it's after hours and your not interrupting. If your mentor is worthwhile, (s)he will be happy to do this.

Read this forum as often as possible!!!! Not everything on here is correct - no one here is perfect - it's still better than any class I've ever taken!!!
 

slacker

Junior Member
Joined
Feb 20, 2002
You might want to call re-name your post "Trainers" can help their cause.

Sorry Terrel, but the problem isn't the trainee.

You're obviously not hiring the right people. Every one of your points could have been addressed in a simple phone interview. If they answer "no" to any of them, guess what? You have the wrong candidate and all of this could have been avoided.

The people on your team are a direct reflection of management. Do you have a good team of people working for you or a crappy one? You are only blaming yourself by blaming the lack of specific competencies of the people you hire.
 

TC

Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Pennsylvania
Terrel,

You stated 8 reasons why I am a one-man(oops, politically incorrect), make that a 1-person office.

TC
 

Terrel L. Shields

Thread Starter
Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
May 2, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Arkansas
Slacker has obviously never attempted to train anyone. Ditto for hiring and firing. I defy anyone to determine by interview if a person is going to motivate themselves to buy and read appraisal books. Or, that they will try a word processer then whine they cannot do it. Likewise, I was approached by these neophytes to take them on, not recruited by me. All in all, they have provided little if any profit, and I would be better off with a good secretary than all three of them. I would turn down a higher percentage of work, but I could cherry pick the most profitable jobs, too.

My subs were well grounded in the basics from NAIFA classes and from me. I still go to many inspections with them. All three are 3+ year hands, one is a CR. Her production has fell from 3 reports a week to 1 or less. Another is the most forgetful person I know. NEVER remembers to return anything. Cannot get the hang of Narratives. I mean we are talking college educated in science. BOTH are well versed in education as I have taken CE with them. Things like R.E. Fraud and the Appraisers Role, appraising the non-conforming property, etc. etc. Specific instruction to address specific problems. Everything but Zen and the Art of Appraising, and I would take that if it existed. But as some wag once said, "You can lead a Horticulture but you can't make her think."

Secondly, many of these problems have come after years of experience. The arguing with a client situation was maddening....never had him offer to do that before. Basically complained to the client that they did not tell him the property was a manf. home was the reason it took 4 weeks to do the report. BS, the reason was because he got sidetracked with stuff that he should never had got tangled up in the first place, then muddled around all over the place hunting for comps that DIDN'T exist.

I even have offered bi-weekly training sessions. Judgment is difficult to teach, but it does not come by osmosis either. A work ethic has to be in place and a lackadaisical attitude towards becoming a professional as opposed to being just another warm body separates the good from the bad.

ter
 

Travis McGee

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 18, 2004
Terrel,

Maybe you should interview first for INTELLIGENCE and then for DESIRE.

I think you said alot of stuff it says you hired a broke IDIOT and you are NOT PATIENT.

Maybe work alone. What is your motivation for a trainee anyhow. $ or ??

Good Luck and relax.

Jen
:wink:
 

Bill Plunkett

Freshman Member
Joined
Aug 29, 2002
I can understand where Terrell is coming from!!

BUT, We do an extensive interview, followed by office visit, followed by riding with one of the office appraisers. And YES, we've still hired one we should'nt have. But we will still keep hiring apprentices. I love it when the big light bulb goes off!!

I maybe reading between the lines too much but it appears allows apprentices to work out of their homes. We stopped that long ago. First year minimum is in our little office period.

No, I don't recommend to people to enter this profession anymore, but if they're gonna do it we're here to help.

Bill of SC
 

Terrel L. Shields

Thread Starter
Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
May 2, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Arkansas
I got the trainees this way.

In 95 I took on a long time friend who has lupus and who had worked for one of those hit the number appraisers who has been sanctioned several times since then. She cannot work but 1/2 time or so with this disease. But the medication she takes is powerful and makes concentration poor. Meanwhile I had a partnership with the best CR I ever worked with. She refused to accept any assignment she was not comfortable with. She knew her limits and did what she did so well I never signed her reports unless someone asked me to. In 1996 she had a mole appear on her arm. It was melanoma. Radiation failed, Chemo Failed. She was sent to the Natl Inst of H in Bethesda, MD. Experimental trial. All to no avail. She died in 2000. About a yr. or so before dying her step daughter began assisting her. Mary Lou's death bed request was that I finish the job she started - making her S-D an appraiser. There is no way I would have done anything else.

Meanwhile in 1998, my first trainee pretty much quit to take care of her mother in law who was affected by Alzhiemers. In 1999 I was approached by a fellow who had lost his job in a downturn and taken training to become an appraiser. 1998 had been relatively slow and I made it alone but the load was increasing. I needed someone. He is quite thorough, but a procrastinator....personal habits I defy anyone to detect in an interview. He also had the independence to be able to starve for a while - no mortgage and a wife with a job. I find many trainees quit because they are straving and have to get a job that pays a decent salary. What we offer to trainees is a disgrace in general.

After my first trainee's m-i-l was put in a rest home, she wanted to return, but I had 2 to take care of. I recommended her to another appraiser who worked her far too much - often 10 hr days. She passed out on the job several times from the lupus. She was ready to quit and went to take the SL test in OK without letting her boss know it. When she got home she found her husband in bed with another woman [she will kill me if she ever reads this]. This divorce is far from over and has been more than messy. Her lawyers advised her to not work for some time. She is short of money, only qualifies as partially disabled, and did not want to return where she was. She has gone back to work 10-15 hr a week with me..a level she can sustain without bumping her SS limits.

I am not patient, right. But none I hire are idiots, just idiosyncratic. One focuses too much on her and her husbands farm letting work slide or hurrying and making some really awful mistakes. One is ill and simply will never be as mentally sharp as she used to be, especially since the divorce is worrying her to death and the doctors have increased her medical dosages. The third just simply doesn't have a great memory despite an excellent education and absolutely loathes word processors - a true hunt and peck typist.

The results are that I have 3 trainees, none whom are capable of assisting me significantly with anything but residential property. 1 has her CR now, one is taking the test in OCT, and the other may never be able to pass the SL test unless she gets better and the stress drops off enough to lower her medication needs. You work with what you have. But it does not mean you have to be satisfied with it.
 
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