Being an appraiser is a bigger challenge than ever before. The debate on everything from appraisals' validity, inaccuracy and appraisal fraud, choosing an independent appraiser, broker price opinion or automated valuation model, to the necessity of a Home Valuation Code of Conduct is in full swing. If one adds to that new regulatory requirements it is obvious that appraisers need be economists as well as statisticians while complying with rules and expectations.

No wonder veterans like Countdown To Buy founder Jim Hodson are trying to innovate the real estate transaction to ensure process transparency that empowers homebuyers and sellers. Looking at valuations and pricing as part art and part science, he created CTB as a Realtor-friendly automated marketplace that helps banks and servicers liquidate distressed assets.

Mr. Hodson is not alone in reiterating that "knowledge is power!"

Clear Capital's chief appraiser David DeMello has been in the trenches for over 12 years. He also stresses the importance of process and information transparency when conducting appraisals. Furthermore, he acknowledges that to be in compliance and survive today's challenges appraisers need to embrace and analyze micro-market data seen through macro-market lenses. Updating micro data based on periodic home price change reports appears to be equally important to updating personal knowledge about national market trends and the unique ways macro economics affect neighborhoods at the ZIP code level.

Next in News ►