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Wintotal

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david perry

Freshman Member
Joined
Jul 14, 2003
I am a new Registered Appraiser. I am trying to set up my home office to allow me to work at home. I have received the WinTotal Demo Software. Alamode has called me about every week wanting me to buy the Software. I was told that the cheapest price that I could get into a package was $700. Is this true. I was told by a friend that it was $300 for the chapest package a few months ago :eyecrazy: .


Dave
 

Mike Garrett RAA

Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Colorado
They changed the program. Before you could get a second copy of your mentor's program...now you can't. If you work in someone's office that has work stations networked you can use the program for free.

Buy the most program you can possibly afford. You will want all the bells and whistles sooner or later.
 

Michael Elliott

Sophomore Member
Joined
Apr 13, 2003
Mike,

I think what David is referring to is that alamode used to have 3 different versions of WinTotal (not to be confused with their three different service contract packages) - they were Standard, Professional and Enterprise.

Now, they no longer offer the "Standard" version - only Professional and Enterprise. The standard version was nearly useless for anyone seriously wanting to do business in today's world anyway - it had no digital photo capability, (I think) no mapping, of course no flood/census, etc. and also no sketching. All these items were locked out unless you bought Pro or Enterprise.

Basically, you could track your files and fill out forms as long as you still wanted to use a film camera and do most things manually. It was a formfiller and that's it. Back in the day, it probably made sense as an introductory product. I know several commercial appraisers that kept a copy around just for the occasional time they would need to fill out a form like the HUD form for apartments, etc.

But it really makes little sense these days. As for the current prices - you get what you pay for. $700 is really a good deal for what it does. If you really have to have cheap software, try someone like Homeputer or SFREP (Appraise-It). There is even a guy on this forum that wrote his own forms software in Excel. But, my theory is that if you're going to seriously do business, then seriously do business. Back when I was starting out, it nearly broke me to buy a copy of Standard. But between software, computer and car, those are your primary business tools. Why save $400 on something that will be your primary means of earning income? That's an appraisal and a half.

FYI - alamode is currently running a special until 7/31 for $100 off all items of $200 or more. This might help you some.

-Michael Elliott
[email protected]
 

Frank M. Lagani

Freshman Member
Joined
May 26, 2003
David,

I just finished there 2- day seminar here in N.J. which was GREAT. They offered a 50% discount on everything, you may want to see if they will be in your area soon. It's worth it


frank
 

Michael Elliott

Sophomore Member
Joined
Apr 13, 2003
Originally posted by david perry@Jul 20 2003, 10:28 PM
Was there a fee for the classes??
There's usually a small fee for the classes (usually less than what appraisal classes cost per hour), however if you are a Platinum member, the seminars are free. In addition, they have the seminars approved for appraisal CE credit in many states.

-Michael Elliott
[email protected]
 

Frank M. Lagani

Freshman Member
Joined
May 26, 2003
David,

The fee was $149 per day (8 hr) + you get network with other appraisers in your area & other parts of the country.
 

Jason Cowan

Sophomore Member
Joined
Dec 12, 2002
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
Virginia
I think last year they had a holiday season sale as well.
 

Mike Garrett RAA

Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Colorado
I attended a class in Denver a few years ago...very helpful. I want to get into another but the timing is never good for me. Thinking about flying to Oklahoma City and taking their class there. Too bad I can't convince Dave to train me as a "roving trainer" so I can help others with learning how to get the maximum use of the program. That way my Pocket Total wouldn't sit on my desk and just stare at me! :rofl:
 

Stone

Elite Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Wisconsin
I took one in Chicago this summer. I only took the single day course, and much of it was very helpful. I wish that the section on Apex had been included in the first day, and the section on billing or the section on Mercurey had been on Sunday, since neither of those is really appraisal related. If you do not bill with wintotal or use mercurey, it gets to be a little long.

There were definitely some nice tricks that I learned, and the parts that were of interest to me were useful. I would definitely suggest going, particularly if you use the billing/ordering features of the software. If you do not use those features, plan to have a bit of time where you find yourself tuning out.

And the networking thing is a good point. I ran into my first instructor there, and I spoke with several other appraisers who I would feel comfortable calling with questions if I was working in their areas.
 
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