How to Get Appraisal Orders During a Housing Market Slump

The U.S. real estate market has currently hit a speed bump in terms of order turnover compared to previous years. High interest rates and skyrocketing home prices are shaking things up, slowing down the flow of appraisal orders.  

However, with the right strategies and mindset, appraisers can still combat low volumes and thrive in their profession

Join us as we delve into some strategies and insights that can help you navigate through these turbulent waters.  

Tap into Remote Appraisal Work

In the midst of the slowdown, consider venturing into remote or village appraisal opportunities, particularly as many older appraisers prefer to forgo such distant areas. 

This preference could create a niche market for appraisers willing to take on these assignments, making it easier to secure work in this tough market.

While these locations may pose logistical challenges, they also present unique opportunities to expand your client base and demonstrate your willingness to tackle diverse appraisal assignments.   

Explore Non-Lender Work Opportunities

Appraisers should embrace diversification as a key strategy to combat low appraisal volumes. Instead of solely relying on lender-driven appraisal assignments, think outside the box with avenues such as: 

  • Home Measurement Services: Provide professional measurement services to real estate professionals, ensuring accurate property dimensions for marketing purposes. 
  • Tax Appeal Work: Offer expertise in property tax appeal cases, assisting property owners in challenging inaccurate assessments and potentially reducing tax liabilities. 
  • Courtroom Expert Witness: Explore opportunities in courtroom testimony and expert witness services, offering valuable insights in legal proceedings related to real estate disputes.
  • Pre-listing Appraisals: Reach out to real estate agents and offer pre-listing appraisal services to assist sellers in pricing their properties accurately.

Finding a niche within the appraisal industry can be instrumental in securing non-lending work. Consider your interests, strengths, and expertise to identify a specialized area where you can excel. 

Whether it’s working closely with real estate agents, specializing in tax appeal cases, or providing courtroom testimony, focusing on a niche allows you to differentiate yourself and attract specific clientele. 

Join the VA Panel

Explore appraisal orders from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), as they often have special requirements that can be more stringent than traditional appraisal assignments. 

For instance, VA orders typically require appraisers with five years or more of experience, which can limit the pool of eligible candidates.

By meeting these requirements and gaining accreditation, you can position yourself as a qualified VA appraiser, opening up a potentially lucrative market segment with less competition.    

Embrace Professional Development Opportunities

Continuously invest in your professional development and education to adapt to evolving client demands.  

Being proactive and adaptable positions you as a valuable resource in both lending and non-lending appraisal sectors. For example, despite the inherent challenges, courtroom work offers you the opportunity to showcase your expertise and defend your valuations with confidence. 

Industry conferences such as Valuation Expo and Appraisal Summit also provide brilliant platforms for networking and mentorship, facilitating knowledge exchange among real estate professionals, attorneys, and other potential clients.

Moreover, maximize the potential of your existing contact list, particularly real estate agents with whom you frequently interact, and periodically reach out to stay top-of-mind. Personalized communication, such as phone calls and text messages, can go a long way in polishing your networking skills and getting appraisal business.  

Utilize Marketing and Technology

Leverage technology and marketing strategies to showcase your expertise and attract clients. Maintain a professional online presence through a well-designed website, updated social media profiles, and online directories.

Remember to highlight your specialization, credentials, and past successes to establish credibility and attract potential clients searching for appraisal services beyond traditional lending transactions.

Consider using tools like Connect by ValueLink to streamline your workflow and improve collaboration with clients. This can free up valuable time to focus on your marketing and business development efforts.    

Parting Thoughts

While low appraisal volumes present challenges in the housing market, appraisers can take proactive steps to thrive in this environment.

By forging partnerships with AMCs, exploring non-lender work opportunities, embracing professional development, utilizing technology and marketing, and just being a little creative, you can also navigate through turbulent times and emerge stronger than before!  

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