How to Become a Real Estate Appraiser in Hawaii?

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Since you are reading this post, I guess you must have some interest in being a real estate appraiser in Hawaii. If so, that’s great!

Real estate appraisal could be a rewarding career. Your job is to provide a professional opinion of a property’s market value for your clients. Your appraisal report could be used by a home buyer/seller, a mortgage lender who wants to understand the value of the collateralize assets, an individual who needs it for tax assessment or even lease negotiation.

Keep in mind that regardless of who are demanding for your appraisal services, your work products must remain objective, unbiased and professional.

How to become a real estate appraiser in Hawaii? The short answer is you need to begin working as a Trainee Appraiser, then upgrade your licenses in becoming a Licensed or Certified Appraiser. You must fulfill the qualifying appraisal education, work experience requirement.

You also need to register with the Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Real Estate Appraiser Program. They are responsible for issuing appraiser licenses and regulating the appraisal industry. 

In this guide, I’ll go through with you step-by-step on how to obtain an appraiser license, the earning potential in this profession, and helpful tips to excel your career.

Hawaii Real Estate Appraiser Licensing Requirement

How to Become an Appraiser Trainee in Hawaii?

Your first step into the real estate appraisal career is to work as a Trainee, where you will be mentored by a certified appraiser. An experienced supervisor could guide you into the right direction in this career.

The supervisory appraiser should educate you with appraisal techniques, effective ways to conduct research, and how to analyze the data.  Most importantly, how to develop an objective estimation of the property’s market value.

Your typically working day could involve doing property research, working on appraisal reports, or inspecting real estate together with the supervisor.

To get out the most from this learning stage,  you should walk through each and every step in the appraisal process, and review carefully on how your trainer inspect and evaluate real estate.

4 Steps to Become an Appraiser Trainee in Hawaii

Step 1: Fulfill the Basic Requirement

  • At least 18 years old
  • Have a valid Social Security Number
  • No prior related experience is needed

Step 2: Complete the Qualifying Education

You must complete the 75 hours of appraisal courses and the AQB Supervisor/Trainee course.  

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

Step 3: Submit Application to the Real Estate Appraiser Program

Step 4: Find a Supervising Appraiser

Not sure how to find a supervisory appraiser?  No problem! Here are 10 Tips to Find a Supervisory Appraiser.

Once you and your trainer decide to work together, you both need to let the Department know about the mentoring relationship. 

You must also keep track of your working hours with the approved experience log. These logs are necessary when you upgrade your appraiser license in the future. In order for them to be valid, make sure you and the supervising appraiser sign on every page of them. 

How to Become a Licensed Residential Appraiser in Hawaii?

As a Licensed Residential Appraiser, you can evaluate non-complex residential properties with 1-4 units, while the transaction value cannot be greater than $1,000,000. Although you can also appraise complex properties, the maximum value is up to $250,000.

Mobile Homes real estate agent

When working as a fee-based appraiser, your assessment could be used by customers such as individuals, lenders, banks, or appraisal management companies (AMC). Your daily activities could include conducting, inspecting properties, analyzing data and writing appraisal reports.

Alternatively, you could also be employed by an appraisal firm or financial institution as their in-house appraiser, where you could enjoy the stable income and employee’s benefits.

This license is worth considering if you have not fulfilled the necessary work experience, appraisal courses or college-level education to become a certified appraiser but wish to advance the scope of practice beyond the Trainee title.

5 Steps to Become a Licensed Residential Appraiser in Hawaii

Step 1: Meet the Basic 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 Hours of Working Experience

You must have at least 1000 hours of acceptable appraisal experience, where they need to be acquired for over a 6 months period.

Step 3: Fulfill the Education Requirement

You’ll need to complete 150 hours of qualifying appraisal education from an approved courses provider.

You should have taken some of the courses when becoming an Appraiser Trainee,  so that you are only required to fulfill the additional course works.

Step 4: Submit Application to the Real Estate Appraiser Program

Step 5: Pass the Licensed Residential Appraiser Exam

Is real estate appraiser a good career? This is one of the common questions I hear a lot. Therefore, I spent months and months in connecting with different real estate appraisers. Here are their valuable insights about this profession. Make sure to check it out!

How to Become a Certified Residential Appraiser in Hawaii?

As a Certified Residential Appraiser, you can assess for:

  • residential properties with 1 to 4 units regardless of the transaction value or complexity.
  • non-residential 1-4 units property given that the transaction value is no more than $250,000

You could a self-employed appraiser where you deal with your own clients, set your working schedule, and have the flexibility to run the business in ways you want. (If you want to start your own appraisal business, then here’s a post for you. In there, you’ll find the essential setup and tools needed.)

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

There is no restriction on the transaction value of residential properties you could assess. The scope of your practice and business opportunity would be a lot wider than being a Licensed Residential Appraiser. In fact, many large lenders and financial institutions only accept assessment work from Certified Appraiser.

So let’s take a look at the steps to become a Certified Residential Appraiser.

5 Steps to Become a Certified Residential Appraiser in Hawaii

Step 1: Meet the Basic Requirement:

  • You must be at least 18 years old
  • Have a valid Social Security Number
  • Finish 1 of the 6 college-level education options:
    1. Bachelor’s Degree or higher
    2. Associate’s Degree in a focused field of study. (i.e.: business, economics, or real estate);
    3. Complete 30 college semester credit hours in specified topics;
    4. Complete 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. If you have been a LICENSED RESIDENTIAL appraiser for over 5 years while your license is in good standing with no disciplinary actions, then the college-level education requirement can be waived. 

Step 2: Complete the Appraisal Work Experience

You need to complete a minimum of 1500 hours of acceptable appraisal experience in not less than a 12 months period.

Step 3: Fulfill the Education Requirement

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

Study tip: Whenever possible, I prefer to take online courses. You can study at your own pace at the convenient of your home, library, or wherever there is internet access. Here’s an article review of an online school that I like.

Step 4: Submit Application to the Real Estate Appraiser Program

Step 5: Pass the Certified Residential Appraiser Exam

How to Become a Certified General Appraiser in Hawaii?

So you want to further expand your scope of appraisal work? Then becoming a Certified General Appraiser would be the option!

This is the highest license type you could obtain in the appraisal industry. You could assess all types of real estate regardless of the transaction value or complexity. 

Although you still could evaluate for residential properties, many would choose to focus on the commercial line of work. 

Since the transaction values involve could be significant, you must be extremely careful and responsible when handling your work. Extensive research and site inspections are often required. It is your responsibility to provide your clients with an objective appraised value as accurate as possible.

Due to the expectation of low margin of error in assessment, the amount of work experience and education required to become a Certified General Appraiser is the most challenging among all the levels of licensing.

But first you would need to become a Certified General Appraiser, so let’s go over the steps to get you this credential.

5 Steps to Become a Certified General Appraiser in Hawaii

Step 1: Meet the Basic Requirement:

  • You must be at least 18 years old
  • Have a valid Social Security Number
  • Bachelor’s Degree or higher

Step 2: Complete the Required Hours of Working Experience

You must have at least 3000 hours of acceptable appraisal experiencewhere they need to be obtained for over a 18 months period. At least 1500 hours of the working experience needs to be from non-residential appraisal work.

Step 3: Fulfill the Education Requirement

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

Step 4: Submit Application to the Real Estate Appraiser Program

Step 5: Pass the Certified General Appraiser Exam

Courses Requirement for Hawaii Appraiser

 Appraiser Trainee (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 Market Analysis and Highest & Best Use 1515
Residential Appraisal Site Valuation and Cost Approach 1515
Residential Sales Comparison and Income Approaches 3030
Residential Report Writing and Case Studies 1515
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 Site Valuation and Cost Approach 30
General Appraiser Sales Comparison Approach 30
General Appraiser Report Writing and Case Studies 30
General Appraiser Income Approach 60
Total75 hours150 hours200 hours300 hours

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 Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs

Once you have fulfilled all the prerequisites, you could submit your application to the Department Here are the applications for:

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

  • Registration fee (Can be found on the applications) 
  • Supporting legal documents
  • Education 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.)
  • Stated Approved Appraiser Experience Log  (Only if you are applying to become Licensed/Certified Appraiser)

Then you could mail the documents to the Real Estate Appraiser Program, or bring them to their physical office. The addresses are printed on the applications. 

If you have any questions, you could contact the Real Estate Appraiser Program at:

  • Tel: (808) 586-2701
  • Email:

Hawaii Real Estate Appraiser Exam

Once the Department accepts your application, they will send you a notice with instruction to schedule the exam. Pearson-vue will administer the exam, where you can take it on a computer at their examination center.

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

The licensed and certified exams consist of 125 questions. Only 110 questions will be scored, the other 15 are pretest questions. The required passing score is 75. You will immediately know your score once you finish writing the test.

You could find out more details in the National Appraiser Examination Candidate Handbook.

(Read: 10 helpful tips to pass the real estate appraiser exam)

Appraiser License Renewal and Continuing Education Requirements

All real estate appraisers in Hawaii are required to renew their license bBiennial by December 31 every odd numbered year.

In addition to the renewal application, below are the other requirements:

  • Complete 28 hours continuing education every 24 months, of which must include 7 hours of National USPAP Update course 
    • There is no restriction on how many CE credit hours you can take online
  • Pay the renewal fee

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

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 Does a Real Estate Appraiser Make in Hawaii?

Your earning as a real estate appraiser depends on many things. For instance, your experience, licensing level, the type of properties you specialize in appraising, the company size, its location.

Here’s an article where we discussed in depth of the different factors that could affect the real estate appraisers salary. 

According to the figures on, the average annual salary of real estate appraisers in Hawaii is $59,280,  which is higher than 81% similar careers in the same state.

The starting annual salary of a real estate appraiser in Hawaii is around $38,530, it has the potential to go up to $94,420. Of which some appraisers could be working full-time or part-time.

Based on the Dec 1st, 2018 figures on, appraisers who focus their practice on commercial properties tend to have a compensated better financially than residential real estate appraisers.

  • The average salary for Residential real estate appraisers is $54,820. The range mostly falls between $45,180 and $63,339.
  • The average salary for Commercial real estate appraisers is $102,155. The range generally falls between $87,867 and $117,186.

Is commercial real estate appraisal a good career? Check out this complete guide. In it, you’ll find the type of work involved as a commercial real estate appraiser, the income potential, and the training you need to have to become one.

How Many Real Estate Appraisers are in Hawaii?

Hawaii has approximately 1.4 million of population. Honolulu is the largest city and county in Hawaii. Although the county of Honolulu has approximately one million residents, there are no other cities with more than 50,000 people. The next largest city is followed by Pearl City.

According to the Appraisal Subcommittee website (July 2019), there is a total of 507 appraisers in Hawaii. The breakdown is as follow:

  • # of Certified General Appraisers 232
  • # of Certified Residential Appraisers 259
  • # of Licensed Residential Appraisers 16

Helpful Tips for Appraisers in Hawaii

Tip#1: Complete the Appraisal Courses Asap

You could read as much as you want, but your career 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.

Tip#2: Build Your Network with Other Real Estate Professionals in Hawaii

Connecting with other appraisers in Hawaii is a good way to gain a better understanding about the appraisal industry. You could do so by joining appraiser coalitions, online forums or even LinkedIn groups. For instance, the Hawaii Chapter of the Appraisal Institute.

Begin with a friendly conversation. Let them know that you are starting your career as an appraiser, ask them if they have any tips or advice for newbies to the industry.

In addition, you should network with other professionals in the real estate field. Mortgage agents, lenders, and realtors can all provide you with valuable insight, which could be very helpful to your career building in the long haul.

Here’s a list of real estate professional groups on our resource page. Remember to check it out!

Current Real Estate Appraiser Jobs Opportunity Available in Hawaii

Note: The list of Appraiser Jobs Opportunity is coming soon. Please stay tune

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 Hawaii Real Estate Appraiser Program.


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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