Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Restricted Residential and Restricted Non-Residential Appraisal Reports:

One of the breakthrough moments with this term’s edition of USPAP was the concrete examples within the student manual of what a Restricted Residential and Restricted Non-Residential appraisal reports might look like.  I mentioned in class that our office copied both formats to our macros with the idea that such a shortened version was perfectly acceptable with the Appraisal Foundation.

We’ve been reminded by one of our review appraiser friends that compliance with USPAP is only part of the criteria of working with lenders and, although the shortened format is allowed within the confines of USPAP, it might not be approved by your lender/client.  Be sure to check it out prior to submitting such a report.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Thanks for a Great First Year!

June 30th was the last date for compliance with the Indiana appraiser continuing education requirements and it was also the anniversary of our first year with Education Resource, LLC.  We want to thank everyone who helped make our first year a good one. 

Education Resource is looking to expanding our operations in this coming year with new and revised programs.   We plan to continue the Lunch and Learn Series and we are contemplating taking it on the road – maybe on a quarterly basis.  We also want to continue to partner with other instructors like George Dell, in the coming year.  Our goal is to make your future CE requirements interesting, informative and painless. In that regard, please be on the lookout for an upcoming survey- we are interested in hearing your ideas for upcoming offerings.

In the meantime, we want to thank all who attended our classes.  It has been an honor to be your instructor.

Friday, March 23, 2018

CE Cycle for Appraisers Ends on June 30th!

For those of you holding an Indiana Appraiser's license…..June 30th is the deadline to have completed your 28 hours of CE (including 7 hours of USPAP). We have two USPAP dates remaining and several other course offerings to round out your 28 hours.

Check out our upcoming courses and register directly online at or call us at 317-610-6689.

For more specifics on the CE requirements for each license type, check out the info below:

Indiana Real Estate Appraisers:

  • 28 hours within a two-year period with the period starting each even numbered year (Current Cycle: July 1, 2016-June 30, 2018)
  • Must include 7 hours of USPAP (Must be completed between the time USPAP is available on approximately November 1, 2017 and June 30, 2018)
  • CE requirements also apply to licensed trainees from the date of initial licensure.
  • If an appraiser receives their license or certification within the last 185 days of a two (2) year renewal cycle, they are not required to obtain continuing education in the next two year period.
  • Two to seven classroom credit hours can be obtained by attending the Real Estate Appraiser Licensee and Certification Board meeting for an hour for hour credit.
  • Up to fifty percent (50%) of continuing education credit may be granted for participation, other than as a student in appraisal educational programs, as follows:
  • Teaching.
  • Program development.
  • Authorship of textbooks.
Indiana Real Estate Brokers:
  • 12 hours every year between July 1st to June 30th (IC 25-34.1-2-5; IC 25-34.1-3-10)
  • If license is “Active” or “Unassigned”, the CE must be completed within the 7/1 to 6/30 timeline.
  • If license is “Inactive” or “Referral”, there is no requirement for CE,
  • Managing Brokers are required to have 4 of the 12 hours specifically categorized as Managing Broker CE
  • Instructors must have 4 of the 12 hours categorized as Instructor specific CE

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Stand Your Ground

Forty-five years ago when I decided to announce to the family that I wanted to be an appraiser, my father-in-law, a crusty ole farmer from northern Indiana, said the appraisal business was nothing more than a scam.  “I just bought my neighbor’s farm” he said.  “He and I agreed $1,000 an acre was fair.  Why should I pay some appraiser to tell me it is only worth $900 an acre?”  A good question.

My answer then is close to what I would say today.  My job as an appraiser is to help the lender understand what the typical buyer would pay for the site if, heaven forbid, the borrower never makes that first payment.  The lender doesn’t care what the borrower paid, or what it cost to replicate, or what conditions were included in the transaction – they just want to be assured that if they get the property back, they can sell it for enough to pay back the debt.

Actually, the question is just as pertinent today as it was then – except the typical scenario is the property has been listed for $150,000, there is a full price offer, a bidding war erupts, and before the dust settles, there is an accepted offer of $165,000.   A detailed comp search shows there has never been a sale in the neighborhood of over $145,000 and the best, most recent, most proximate comparable sale is the house next door that just sold for $140,000 - $25,000 less than the accepted offer.

A quick call to both brokers involved indicate that, yeah, this is a bit unusual, but hey, there are plenty of supporting sales outside of the neighborhood that have closed over the last several years.  Surely, if you look hard enough you’ll be able to make this work. 

No. It is not our job to help make anything “work”.

The answer, again, is that we appraisers are looking for sales that support what the value should be – not what the price was. We are bound to find the “the most probable price that a property should bring in a competitive and open market under all conditions requisite to a fair sale, the buyer and seller, each acting prudently, knowledgeably and assuming the price is not affected by undue stimulus.” 

Bidding the final price up to something like 15% to 20% more than the list price is not typical and, in all likelihood, represents some undue stimulus. Hot seller markets push prices but not necessarily values.   Stand your ground.  Appraising within the basic principles not only protects us, it protects our clients.

Saturday, September 30, 2017



We’ve often heard from Appraisers and Brokers who question what benefit their various memberships really provide them? We have just completed an engagement with the Southwest Indiana Association of REALTORS which illustrates one of the most tangible benefits we’ve encountered- FREE Continuing Education!
Over the last couple days, the SWIAR provided 14 hours of continuing education, as well as a delicious lunch, to all interested members. This offering was met with such enthusiasm, the Association has decided to host a similar event on February 22nd and 23rd, 2018- both the "2018/2019 USPAP Update" and "Litigation Appraising" will be offered over the course of these two days. If you are a member of the Southwest Indiana Association of REALTORS, stay tuned for details about this valuable offer!


 Is your office or organization interested in offering this amazing benefit? We are happy to bring our courses to you. Just give us a call to discuss specifics at 317-610-6689.


Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Industry News:
A recent letter addressed to both the Chairman and ranking member of the “Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs” detailed the appraiser industry’s concern with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac issuing appraisal waivers.  Thirty-six professional groups and agencies signed the petition asking the Senate Committee to halt the waivers until the sponsoring organizations can “demonstrate that the proposed program does not harm the consumer, is properly monitored, and integrates proper safeguards to prevent fraud.”  
Check out a copy of the letter at:

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Is the Neighborhood truly similar and competing?

 A few months back, a client asked me how I developed my neighborhood adjustments.  The gentleman had finished reviewing my report and noticed Neighborhood adjustments had been applied to three of the five comparable sales.   I explained to him how the adjustment was developed and sent him a copy of my analysis which was readily available in my work file.  He thanked me several times for my due diligence and then explained the following:

“I’ve asked several appraisers why they don’t take an adjustment for differences in neighborhoods.  I’ve lived in this area for more than twenty years and I know differences exist.  But every time I ask one of our appraisers why they don’t do it, they tell me there is insufficient data to develop the adjustment or there is no way to quantify the adjustment.”

Initially, I didn’t think much of the conversation.  In all honesty, I was just happy I had the support for the adjustment and wasn’t in trouble with my client.  But the more I thought about it, the more I realized how unfortunate the situation really was.  Here is a client who is relying on his appraisers to provide accurate and reasonable values.  But if major adjustments are not being developed or are ignored altogether, how accurate is the value opinion?

This conversation was one of a few motivating factors which prompted me to create a class titled, “Supporting Appraisal Adjustments”. The purpose of this course is to offer help to any appraiser who may be struggling to develop reasonable adjustments in the sales comparison analysis.  Likewise, the class will help an appraiser who is seeking a quicker and/or easier way to develop the various adjustments. 

So how do we determine whether neighborhoods are truly similar and competing and how is the adjustment developed if they are not similar?  Well…you’ll need to attend the class to find out.  But, the good news is the adjustment CAN be developed easily and quickly.  The bad news…it does require some math.  But don’t let that scare you- I’ve developed a spreadsheet that automates the math for you!

Our course offering, “Supporting Appraisal Adjustments”, teaches the logic behind the adjustments and how to develop and support reasonable adjustments.  We walk you through the spreadsheet including how to input the data and how best to apply the results.  Also, we give the spreadsheet to use in your own practice.

Check out our website at to register for remaining course dates/locations in 2017. Do you have an office with several appraisers/brokers? Give us a call and we will be happy to come to you to teach for the day. Look forward to seeing you in class!