How to Become a Real Estate Appraiser in Georgia? (courses| exam| income updates)


(**) Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning our company, JCHQ Publishing will get a commission if you decide to make a purchase through the links, but at no additional cost to you.

As a real estate appraiser in Georgia, you could be assessing real estate for an individual purchasing a home, for a mortgage lender who wants to know the value of their loan collateral, for tax assessment purposes, or even for negotiation of a lease.

Regardless of who you are servicing, your core responsibility is to develop an objective opinion about the market value of properties.

To become a real estate appraiser in Georgia, an applicant must complete a 90-hour curriculum approved by the Georgia Real Estate Appraisal Board that includes 15 hours of education in the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP), an AQB approved Supervisory/Trainee course. Accumulate work hours under the supervision of a Certified Appraiser and pass the required appraisal examination.

There are 4 license levels of appraisers in Georgia:

  • Trainee Appraiser
  • Licensed Residential Appraiser
  • Certified Residential Appraiser
  • Certified General Appraiser

If you’re wondering what a real estate appraiser does and if it might be a good career for you, keep reading. I’ll explain all the steps to obtain a real estate appraiser license. Plus everything you need to know about this profession (i.e. pre-licensing course, exam format, income updates). So whether you’re just starting out in your career or you’re looking for a new challenge, read on!

But before we start, I want to give a brief disclaimer. This post is not intended as legal advice or state/federal real estate appraisal training. It is for general information only. Always follow your State Laws and best practices.

The first step to your appraisal career is to complete the pre-licensing courses from a trusted education provider. McKissock Learning received an incredible rating from its students, and their online lessons are taught by instructors who have actual experience in the appraisal industry. You may click here to find out more about their courses. (**)

How to Become a Trainee Appraiser in Georgia?

Becoming an Trainee Appraiser is the first step into the real estate appraiser industry. As a Trainee, you will work under the supervision of a certified appraiser. Your job could involve researching properties, working on reports, or inspecting properties together with the supervisor.

Having a good mentor would give you a good head start in this career. The supervisory appraiser should educate you with practical appraisal methods, how to properly research a property, how to analyze the data to assess the fair market value of the property.

The best way to advance your knowledge is to go through every step in the appraisal process, observe carefully to how your supervisor assesses properties, and always raise your questions or concerns.

Step 1: Meet the eligibility requirement

  • You must be at least 18 years old
  • Have a valid Social Security Number
  • Must hold a high school diploma or equivalency
  • No prior related experience is needed

Step 2: Complete the pre-license education

The purpose of the real estate appraisal courses is to provide students with the skills and knowledge necessary to become a professional appraiser. The courses cover different aspects of the appraisal process, from property valuation to report writing.

Students will learn how to use various appraisal topics such as Basic Appraisal Principals and Procedures, the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP), Residential Report Writing and Case Studies.

At this stage, you need to complete 90 hours of qualifying appraisal-related education, AQB Supervisor/Trainee Course.

Step 3: Submit application to the Georgia Real Estate Appraisal Board

Now you have completed the education requirement, your next step is to begin the registration process.

If the Appraisal Board in your state has the online submission available, then I would strongly encourage you to use that option. Not only this is the quickest and most convenient way, but less paper mailing is also good for the environment.

You will find more details about the registration later in the post.

Step 4: Work under the supervision of a Certified Appraiser

As mentioned before, at the initial stage of your appraisal career, you are required to work under the supervision of a Certified Appraiser.

To ensure you can receive the proper training, a supervising appraiser cannot mentor more than three Trainee Appraisers at the same time. Your assignment could involve appraising commercial property, but only given your mentor is a Certified General Appraiser.

You are required to maintain a good filing of your experience logs. In order for the board to recognize these documents, it is mandatory that you and your supervisor sign on every piece of them.

Here’s what I asked a Real Estate Appraiser Trainee about working with a supervisor

Katie Holland, Real Estate Appraiser Trainee

Jacob:Is there anything you have learned in the field or from your supervisor that was not covered in the class?” 

Katie: “Yes, I have learned so much through both my supervisor and working in the field. Through this, it has taught me how to properly measure a home, how to notice differences in materials used throughout the home, how to properly deal with clients (answering such questions that may come about or just overall explaining the process of how the appraisal works.)

I conducted a full interview with Katie Holland, where she shared her journey and thought about the real estate appraisal industry. Be sure to check it out!

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How to Become a Licensed Residential Appraiser in Georgia?

Not every state still has this license, but Georgia is one of those who does.

As a Licensed Residential Appraiser, you are authorized to appraise for non-complex residential properties with 1-4 units, while the transaction value is to be less than $1,000,000. Although you can also evaluate complex properties for both federally related or non federally related transaction, the value cannot be over $250,000.

You could working as a fee-based appraiser, providing services to clients such as individuals, lenders, banks, or appraisal management companies (AMC). Your daily routine could include doing research online, going on the field to inspect properties, and writing the appraisal reports. (Here’s a post on how to start your appraisal business)

Alternatively, you could be hired by an appraiser firm or financial institution to become their in-house appraiser, where you could enjoy the stable salary and company’s benefits.

Here was a job opening to give a better insight being a Residential Appraiser. It was from a real estate brokerage in Atlanta, and their primary business was to help a major investment firm in purchasing distressed or foreclosure properties. They expected to have over 70 buying transactions statewide every month.

They were looking for a Residential Appraiser to evaluate for these properties, but they must be based on After Repair Value.

Candidate must be either a Licensed/Certified Residential Appraiser, with at least two years of appraisal experience. The job is an independent contractor basis, where appraiser will be compensated with commission per deal.

Step 1: Meet the eligibility requirement:

  • You must be at least 18 years old
  • Have a valid Social Security Number
  • No college level education is required

Step 2: Complete the required appraisal work experience

You must have at least 2000 hours of acceptable appraisal experience, where they need to be acquired for over a 12 months period.

Step 3: Fulfill the education requirement

You’ll need to complete 150 hours of qualifying appraisal education from an approved course provider. Since you should have completed some of the courses when becoming a Trainee Appraiser, you just need to complete the additional courses. Here are some of the courses you may need to take:

  • Residential Market Analysis and Highest and Best Use – 15 Hours
  • Residential Appraiser Site Valuation and Cost Approach – 15 Hours
  • Residential Sales Comparison and Income Approaches – 30 Hours

I will also include a chart with the required courses later in this post.

Step 4: Submit application to the Georgia Real Estate Appraisal Board

Once you have fulfilled the education and working experience requirement, you should submit the application to the Georgia Real Estate Appraisal Board together with other required documents.

Step 5: Pass the Licensed Residential Appraiser Exam

Now it’s the time to write the exam. The purpose is to test your appraisal knowledge, especially the subjects that are covered in the pre-licensing courses.

Doing multiple sets of practice questions is an excellent way to prepare for the exam and also boost your confidence.

To increase your chance in passing the exam on the first time, make sure to check out our exam hacks. In there, not only you will find the content of the exam, but also 10 effective tips on how to prepare for it.

How to Become a Certified Residential Appraiser in Georgia?

Real Estate Appraiser Continuing Education

As a Certified Residential Appraiser, you can assess for:

  • family properties with 1 to 4 residential units regardless of the transaction value or complexity.
  • other kind of real property given that the transaction value is less than $250,000

Similar to a Licensed Residential Appraiser, you could a small business owner running your own appraisal practice, servicing clients such as individuals, lenders, banks, or appraisal management companies (AMC).

On the other hand, you could work for an appraiser firm or financial institution to become their in-house appraiser, where you could enjoy the stable income and company’s benefits.

Unlike a Licensed Residential Appraiser, there is no limitation on the transaction value of residential properties you could evaluate. The scope of your practice and business opportunity would be a lot wider.

In fact, many reputable lenders and financial institutions in Georgia only recruit or work with appraisers that have the certified credential.

Step 1: Meet the eligibility requirement:

  • You must be at least 18 years old
  • Have a valid Social Security Number
  • Fulfill one of the following six options:
    1. Bachelor’s Degree in any field of study; or higher
    2. Associate’s Degree in a focused field of study, (i.e.: Business, Economics, or Real estate;)
    3. Completion of 30 college semester credit hours in specified topics;
    4. Completion of College-Level Examination Program (CLEP)1 exams equivalent to a minimum of 30 semester credit hours in specified subject matter areas; or
    5. Any combination of #3 and #4 above that includes all of the topics identified.
    6. Licensed Residential Appraiser who has their license in good standing for at least 5 years

Step 2: Complete the required appraisal work hours

You must have at least 2500 hours of acceptable appraisal experience where they need to be obtained for over a 24 months period.

Step 3: Fulfill the education requirement

You’ll need to complete 200 hours of qualifying appraisal education from an approved course provider.

Since you should have completed some of the courses when becoming a Trainee or Licensed Residential Appraiser, you are only required to complete the extra classes. Some of them may include:

  • Residential Market Analysis and Highest and Best Use – 15 Hours
  • Residential Appraiser Site Valuation and Cost Approach – 15 Hours
  • Residential Sales Comparison and Income Approaches – 30 Hours
  • Statistics, Modeling and Finance – 15 Hours
  • Advanced Residential Applications and Case Studies – 15 Hours
  • Appraisal Subject Matter Electives – 20 Hours

Step 4: Submit application to the Georgia Real Estate Appraisal Board

Once you have fulfilled the education and working experience requirement, you should submit the application to the Georgia Real Estate Appraisal Board along with other required documents.

The Licensing Board in some states may require you to apply within a specific period after you complete the pre-licensing education. Therefore, don’t wait till it expires!

Step 5: Pass the Certified Residential Appraiser Exam

Most test centers would require you to bring at least two valid IDs to verify your identity. Don’t forget to bring them along. Else you won’t be able to write the exam.

Here’s another post which covers the Georgia Real Estate Appraisers exam in more details. In there, you’ll find sample questions too. Be sure to check it out!

Here’s a Snippet of What Jamie Owen Thinks About Being a Real Estate Appraiser!

The more you learn, the more you will enjoy being an appraiser.”

I think that humility and honesty are the most important attributes. Humility is important because if we think we know it all, we are going to be in trouble. Being appraiser requires not being thin-skinned and defensive. Others have their opinions and we have ours. Both may be supportable in one way or another.

Being humble helps us to respect the views of others and not be offended if others have a different view. Humility also helps with business relationships, as well as accepting guidance and reminders when we need them, from peers and others.

– Jamie Owen, Certified Residential Real Estate Appraiser at Aspen Appraisal Services

Here’s an exclusive interview with Jamie. He shared with us his journey and valuable experience in the appraisal industry. You’ll also learn what it is like to be a real estate appraiser nowadays. 

How to Become a Certified General Appraiser in Georgia?

The Certified General Appraiser designation is the highest one you could get in the appraisal industry. There is no restriction on the scope of your appraisal work. You could evaluate for all types of real properties regardless of the transaction value or complexity.

Although you still could appraise for family-typed of clients, you could also be assess a portfolio of commercial real estates for institutional investors.

Since your clients depend on your appraisal reports in making an informed investment decision, you must be extremely careful and responsible on your work.  It is your job to perform detailed research and provide your clients with an objective and fair appraised value.

Due to the high expectation and the requirement of small margin of error in your appraisal work, the amount of work experience and education required to become a Certified General Appraiser is the greatest among all the levels of licensing.

So what kind of job can you expect from working as a Certified General Appraiser?

There was a job offer which could give you some ideas. It was from a bank in Atlanta, and they were looking to hire a Real Estate Valuation Specialist.

Some of the job duties involved:

  • Implementing effective appraisal policies to ensure the quality of the collateralized real estate portfolio.
  • Ensure the appraisal procedures comply with the regulatory requirement
  • Perform technical analysis, and reviewing commercial and residential real estate appraisals, and environmental reports

Candidate must hold the Certified General Appraiser license and have over ten years experience working with complex assignments.

Step 1: Meet the eligibility requirement:

  • You must be at least 18 years old
  • Have a valid Social Security Number
  • Hold a Bachelor’s Degree in any field of study; or higher

Step 2: Complete the appraisal work experience hours

You must have at least 3000 hours of acceptable appraisal experience, where they are required to obtain in no less than 30 months. Of which a minimum of half the experience hours must be gained from working on non-residential properties.

Step 3: Fulfill the appraisal education requirement

You’ll need to complete 300 hours of qualifying appraisal education from an approved course provider.

Since you should have completed some of the courses from your previous license(s), you just need to make up for the extra courses. Some of them may include:

  • General Market Analysis and Highest and Best Use – 30 Hours
  • Statistics, Modeling and Finance – 15 Hours
  • General Appraiser Sales Comparison Approach – 30 Hours
  • General Appraiser Site Valuation and Cost Approach – 30 Hours
  • General Appraiser Income Approach – 60 Hours
  • General Appraiser Report Writing and Case Studies – 15 Hours
  • Appraisal Subject Matter Electives – 30 Hours

Step 4: Submit an application to the Georgia Real Estate Appraisal Board

Once you have fulfilled the education and working experience requirement, you should submit the application to the Georgia Real Estate Appraisal Board along with other required documents.

Later in this post, I’ll go over the documents and fees needed for the registration process.

Step 5: Pass the Certified General Appraiser Exam

You have fulfilled the education and appraisal work experience, it’s now time to focus on the exam. Cramming for the exam is ineffective. Instead, you should study for 45 to 60 minutes, then take a break. Concentration tends to wander if you study for too long. If possible, focus on studying only one to two topics per day. But be really good at it.

Video Summary to Obtain a Real Estate Appraiser License in Georgia

Here are the required courses for each real estate appraiser license in Georgia

 Trainee Appraiser (Credit Hours)Licensed Residential Appraiser
(Credit Hours)
Certified Residential Appraiser
(Credit Hours)
Certified General Appraiser
(Credit Hours)
National USPAP Course or Equivalent15 15 15 15
Basic Appraisal Principles30 30 30 30
Basic Appraisal Procedures3030 3030
Residential Report Writing and Case Studies 151515
Residential Market Analysis and Highest & Best Use 1515
Residential Appraisal Site Valuation and Cost Approach 1515
Residential Sales Comparison and Income Approaches 3030
Statistics, Modeling and Finance15 15
Advanced Residential Applications and Case Studies15
Appraisal Subject Matter Electives 20 30
General Appraiser Market Analysis and Highest & Best Use 30
General Appraiser Sales Comparison Approach 30
General Appraiser Site Valuation and Cost Approach 30
General Appraiser Report Writing and Case Studies 30
General Appraiser Income Approach 60
Total90 hours150 hours200 hours300 hours

In addition to the above courses, you also need to take the Trainee/Supervisor course before getting registered as a Trainee Appraiser.

Interested in becoming a real estate appraiser? Here is an Education Resources Page which could be helpful to you in getting the appraiser license.

Registration with the Georgia Real Estate Appraisal Board

Real estate career tips

Once you have fulfilled the necessary requirement, you could submit your application to the Georgia Real Estate Appraisal Board.

In additional to the form, you must provide the following:

  • Registration fee: $125
    • The payment could be made with a cheque or money order payable to “Georgia Real Estate Appraisal Board”
    • Note the fee is non-refundable and non-transferable
  • Supporting legal documents
  • Evidence which shows you have completed the required hours of Board-approved appraisal courses. (i.e., Official transcripts, course completion certificates).
  • Proof that you have fulfilled the specific requirement of post-secondary education for your license (i.e.: Diploma, official transcripts, certificates.)
  • Appraiser Experience Log For Classification (Only if you are applying to become Licensed/Certified Appraiser)

When you read over the application, there are also other required documents such as the Lawful Presence Verification and the Georgia Criminal Information Center report (GCIC). You could find the other appraiser-related forms on this page.

Making sure you prepare all the necessary documents. Not only that incomplete application will not be process, but it will also result in a $25 fee. Then mail the entire package to the Georgia Real Estate Appraisal Board. Their mailing address is on the first page of the application.

If there is anything you are unsure, you should always confirm them. Their phone number is 404-656-3916, and email is grecmail@grec.state.ga.us

More info about the Georgia Real Estate Appraiser Exam

Real estate career studying

After you submit the application, you need to schedule for an exam writing. There is a fee of $128, where PSI will administer the exam.

  • State Licensed Residential Appraiser Exam is a 4 hours exam,
  • State Certified Residential Appraiser Exam is a 4 hours exam,
  • State Certified General Appraiser Exam is a 6 hours exam

They all consist of 125 questions. Only 110 questions will be scored, the other 15 are pretest questions.

Here’s another post with more details on the Georgia Real Estate Appraisers Exam. In there, you’ll learn the format of the exam, weighting of each topic, and sample questions. Be sure to check it out!

FAQ on the Georgia Real Estate Appraiser Career

What are the license renewal and continuing education requirements?

real estate class

All real estate appraisers in Georgia have to file a renewal application every year. You may do so at their online portal.

In addition, you ought to:

  • Complete 7 hours of National Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) update course every two years
  • Submit 14 hours of approved appraiser Continuing Education credits every 12 months
  • Note that the board will not recognize the course that you have repeatedly taken within a one year period.

The renewal fee is:

  • $100 for a Registered Assistant
  • $140 for Licensed/Certified Appraiser

To avoid interruption to your appraisal practice, you should renew it and complete all continuing education requirement before the license expiry date.

Alternatively, you could renew your license through their online services at www.grec.state.ga.us. There should be a discount in doing so, while they could accept a credit card payment.

Career tip: Since you’ll need to take the CE courses, don’t waste your money by taking random classes. Choose the one that could really sharpen your appraisal skills, where you could apply what you learn into the field. Here is an article review of the 10 CE courses that I like.

How much do real estate appraisers make in Georgia?

Realtors In Front Of A House

Your earning ability really comes down to the licensing level, the type of properties you are specialized in appraising, your experience, the location and size of the company, and whether you are working part-time or full-time.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (May 2021), the average annual income of property appraisers and assessors in Georgia is $62,900. The income range typically ranges between $38,110 and $79,600. Top earning Georgia appraisers make over $97,070.

If you want to know more about the income potential of real estate appraisers in Georgia, here’s a guide for you. In there, you’ll find the updated income figures of trainees, residential real estate appraisers, and commercial real estate appraisers. You’ll also learn which cities have the highest earnings. 

How long does it take to become a real estate appraiser in Georgia?

It takes 12 to 30 months to become a real estate appraiser in Georgia. That is the minimum period to complete the work experience so the duration would hugely depend on which appraiser license you are pursuing, the time it takes you to complete the work experience, pre-licensing courses and pass the appraiser exam.

It takes 2,000 hours of work experience to become a Licensed Residential Appraiser in Georgia and 2,500 hours to become a Certified Residential Appraiser, and 3,000 hours to become a Certified General Appraiser.

How much does it cost to become a real estate appraiser in Georgia?

It costs between $1,478 to $1,828 to become a real estate appraiser in Georgia, Here’s the breakdown:

  • Pre-licensing education: $1,050 to $1,400
  • Application fee: $125
  • Activation fee: $175
  • Exam fee: $128

In addition to the above, there will be other expenses such as continuing education courses, E&O insurance, and business supplies such as a laptop, cell phone, and measuring device.

Some companies may pay or reimburse you if you work as their employee. But if you are running your own practice, these are the cost you need to account for yourself.

Do you need a degree to be an appraiser in Georgia?

You need a Bachelor’s Degree to be a Certified General Appraiser in Georgia and complete one of the six college-level education to be a Certified Residential Appraiser. As for becoming a Licensed Residential Appraiser, there is no college-level education requirement.

How many real estate appraisers are in Georgia?

Real Estate Office

According to the figures on the Appraisal Subcommittee website, there is a total of 3261 appraisers in Georgia. The breakdown is as follow:

  • # of Certified General Appraisers 1577
  • # of Certified Residential Appraisers 1376
  • # of Licensed Residential Appraisers 308

Georgia has over 10 million people, with Columbus to be largest city by population. While Fulton is its  highest populated county with over 1 million residents.

When you are considering the regions to conduct your appraisal practice, you should target areas that have a high population. After all, businesses can only occur when there are customers.

Career Tips for Aspiring Real Estate Appraisers in Georgia

Tip#1: Take the pre-licensing courses asap

You could read as much about the appraisal career as you want, but your journey would not begin unless you start taking action.

Taking the real estate appraiser classes would be your first step. Not only you could gain valuable knowledge and practical skills, but you will also have a better understanding about what is like to be an appraiser.

Besides, most states would require you to complete all the trainee education before your working experience could count toward the licensing requirement.

I included some details which could be helpful to your studying on our education resources page. Be sure to check it out.

Tip#2: Connect with other real estate appraisers

To gain a better insight into the appraisal industry, you should start connecting with other appraisers. You could do so through joining industry associations, forums or even LinkedIn groups. For example,

Start with a casual conversation. Let them know that you are planning to start your career as an appraiser, ask them what they think about the industry. Their insight and experience could be extremely helpful to your career building in the long run.

Tip#3: Pursue the Certified Credential

As mentioned before, becoming a certified appraiser really broaden the scope of works you could handle.

Especially when you become a Certified General Appraiser, it opens up a huge door of opportunity in working on different commercial real estates.However, we understand some people might hesitate to pursue the Certified General designation since it does require a Bachelor’s degree or higher.

[Read: Do Appraisers Need a College Degree?]

If this is your concern, and you are already a licensed appraiser, you could consider going after the Certified Residential Appraiser designation. Out of the six options in fulfilling the college education, it seems that the 30 college semester credit hours might be the quickest route.

Then you just need to complete another 50 hours of appraisal-related Qualifying Education, with an additional 500 hours of working experience.

Here are some incredible resources to learn about the Georgia real estate appraiser career!

To help you get to know what it is like to be a real estate appraiser in Georgia, I did extensive research through different sources. In the “Georgia Real Estate Appraiser Career Series.”, you’ll learn the following:

(**) Affiliate Disclosure: Please note that some of the links above are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you. Our company, JCHQ Publishing will earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase after clicking on the link. Please understand that we include them based on our experience or the research on these companies or products, and we recommend them because they are helpful and useful, not because of the small commissions we make if you decide to buy something through the links. Please do not spend any money on these products unless you feel you need them or that they will help you achieve your goals.

Disclaimer: The information in this post is for general information only, and not intend to provide any advice. They are subjected to change any notice, and not guaranteed to be error-free. For full and exact details, please contact the Georgia Real Estate Appraisal Board.

Reference:

  • Official website State of Georgia (source)
  • Georgia Real Estate Commission & Appraisers Board
  • Bureau of Labor Statistics – Property Appraiser and Assessors (source)
  • Appraisal Subcommittee- Active Appraiser Credentials Summary Report (Source)
  • The Appraisal Foundation- National Uniform Licensing and Certification Examinations (Source)
  • sokanu – How much does a Real Estate Appraiser make in Georgia? (Source)
  • salary.com- Salary for Appraiser (Commercial Real Estate) in Georgia (Source)
  • salary.com- Salary for Appraiser (Residential Real Estate) in Georgia (Source)

Author

  • Jacob is a content writer and a real estate investor. He has experience working with different real estate professionals throughout the years. (i.e., appraisers, real estate agents, property managers, home inspectors.) In order to build a career you love, Jacob believes not only you need a thorough understanding about the profession, but you also have to find out what type of jobs could match your personality, lifestyle and expectation.

Jacob Coleman

Jacob is a content writer and a real estate investor. He has experience working with different real estate professionals throughout the years. (i.e., appraisers, real estate agents, property managers, home inspectors.) In order to build a career you love, Jacob believes not only you need a thorough understanding about the profession, but you also have to find out what type of jobs could match your personality, lifestyle and expectation.

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