How to Become a Real Estate Appraiser in Hawaii? (Beginner’s Guide)


(**) 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.

Since you are reading this post, you must have some interest in being a real estate appraiser in Hawaii. Then this is the perfect career guide for you.

To become a real estate appraiser in Hawaii, an applicant must:

  1. Complete 75-hour pre-licensing appraisal courses (including 15 hours of USPAP) and an AQB approved Supervisory/Trainee course)
  2. Apply for the Appraiser Trainee license
  3. Work under the supervision of a certified appraiser
  4. Complete the LR/CR/CG appraisal courses
  5. Pass the state appraisal exam
  6. Acquire work hours experience (2000 for LR, 2500 for CR, 3000 for CG)
  7. Upgrade to a Licensed Residential/ Certified Residential/ Certified General Appraiser license

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. 

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.

In this guide, you’ll find the steps on obtaining a real estate appraiser license in Hawaii, the earning potential in this profession, FAQ and helpful tips to excel your career.

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.

Hawaii Real Estate Appraiser Licensing Requirement

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 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.

Step 1: Fulfill the eligibility 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. The curriculum includes:

  • National USPAP Course -15 hours
  • Basic Appraisal Principles- 30 hours
  • Basic Appraisal Principles- 30 hours

You’ll also need to complete 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: Register with the Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs

In addition to submitting the appraiser license application, you may need to provide proof of appraisal courses completion, registration fee, and other supporting documents.

Also, the Hawaii RE Appraiser Programs needs to protect the public interest by ensuring that an applicant is a trustworthy person. During the application process, you will go through a criminal background check.

Step 4: Work under the supervision of a Certified 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. 

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  • Feedback from actual appraisers whether this is a good career
  • Exclusive interviews of real estate appraisers on how they started their professional practice
  • What it takes to succeed in this career and how to get started?
  • and many more…

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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.

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 appraisal work hours

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 appraisal 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: Register with the Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs

Now you have completed the education prerequisites, your next step is to register with the Department. To do so, you need to submit an application to them.

Whenever possible, I strongly encourage you to make the submission electronically online. Not only this is the quickest and most convenient way, but less paper mailing is also good for the environment.

I’ll go over more details about the registration process later in this post.

Step 5: Pass the Licensed Residential Appraiser Exam

The LR Appraiser Exam is a 4 hours exam with 110 questions. The required passing score is 75. Doing multiple sets of practice questions is an excellent way to prepare for the exam and also boost your confidence.

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.

Step 1: Meet the eligibility 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 hours

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

Step 3: Complete the appraisal education

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: Register with the Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs

By submitting the appraiser license application, the Department will determine whether you are eligible to get the license- for example, they will confirm your age, college education, and completion of the appraisal courses and have more understanding about you.

Step 5: Pass the Certified Residential Appraiser Exam

The CR Appraiser Exam is a 6-hour exam with 110 questions. The required passing score is 75. Be sure to bring along the necessary ID(s) to the testing center. Else, they won’t allow you to write the exam.

Is being a real estate appraiser a good career? – Let’s hear from an industry professional

Brett Hall, MAI, SRA

“Currently, I am a Principal Commercial Appraiser with the Hennepin County Assessor’s office. My primary responsibilities are to value real property for tax petition purposes and provide expert witness testimony. 

Prior to joining the public service sector, I was an independent fee appraiser who owned a residential appraisal firm and was a partner in a commercial appraisal firm. I have been a real estate appraiser for 26 years.

The appraisal industry has amazing opportunities in both the public and private sectors.  The appraisal industry is especially well suited for entrepreneurs who wish to operate their own businesses. 

Brett Hall, MAI, SRA, Principal Commercial Appraiser at Hennepin County

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 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.

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: Obtain appraisal work experience

You must have at least 3000 hours of acceptable appraisal experience, where 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 appraisal education requirement

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

Step 4: Register with the Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs

In addition to submitting the appraiser license application, you may need to provide proof of appraisal courses completion, registration fee, and other supporting documents.

Step 5: Pass the Certified General Appraiser Exam

The CG Appraiser Exam is a 6 hours exam with 110 questions. The required passing score is 75. Although, it would be nice if you could excel in EVERY topic in the course materials. But in reality, I haven’t come across any appraisers who can do that.

Actual Feedback from a Commercial Real Estate Appraiser

Be willing to work extremely hard in the beginning as it will work out well in the long term.”

Jeffrey Harris, MAI, Commercial Real Estate Appraiser and Consultant

“I appraise a variety of commercial properties. Although, I do more investment types than any thing else (office, shopping center, multi-family), I do a little bit of everything, excluding marinas, hotels/golf courses, single-family residential.

I started working for a commercial appraiser in college. I have never done any residential work.

There are several challenges in the field, but overall, it has been wonderful for me. I really enjoy the flexibility the career offers… Every day is a new property and a new challenge and that helps break up the monotony.

Jeffrey Harris, MAI. Commercial Real Estate Appraiser and Consultant at Harris Property Advisors

Want to know whether being a commercial real estate appraiser is a good career? Check out this complete career guide. In there, you’ll find the type of work involved as a CRE appraiser, the income potential, and the training you need to become one. You’ll find the full sharing from Jeffrey Harris as well!

Courses Requirement for Real Estate Appraiser Licenses in Hawaii

 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.

Here’s how you register with the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs

Once you have fulfilled all the prerequisites, you could submit your application to the Department. Here is the application for your reference.

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: appraiser@dcca.hawaii.gov

What is the format of the 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.

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

FAQ on the Hawaii Real Estate Appraiser Career

Common questions about the Hawaii real estate appraiser license and career

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

It takes 6 to 18 months to become a real estate appraiser in Hawaii. 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 1,000 hours of work experience to become a Licensed Residential Appraiser in Hawaii and 1,500 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 Hawaii?

It costs between $1,268 to $1,869 to become a real estate appraiser in Hawaii. Here’s the breakdown:

  • Pre-licensing education: $950 to $1,400
  • Application fee: $25
  • License fee: ($444 even-numbered years; $293 for Odd-numbered years)

In addition to the above, there will be other expenses such as exam fee, 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.

How much do real estate appraisers make in Hawaii?

Hawaii Real Estate Appraiser Income Guide

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.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (May 2021), property appraisers and assessors in Hawaii make an average yearly income of $79,600. The income range typically ranges between $62,770 and $97,150. Top earning Hawaii appraisers make over $101,000.

The average cost of a home appraisal is $315 – $420 in Hawaii. However, the cost may vary depending on the complexity of the property, the time and skills it takes to complete the assignment. Commercial property appraisals could cost between $2,000 to $10,000.

Here’s a complete income guide on real estate appraisers in Hawaii. In there, I will uncover the income updates, the percentage of appraisers that are making a good living, and whether being a commercial or residential appraisers has any effect on the income. So be sure to check it out!

Is there a demand for real estate appraisers in Hawaii?

According to the Appraisal Subcommittee website (June 2022), there is a total of 460 appraisers in Hawaii. The breakdown is as follow:

  • # of Certified General Appraisers 207
  • # of Certified Residential Appraisers 234
  • # of Licensed Residential Appraisers 19

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.

With such a population, you could imagine there would be activities related to buying and selling of real estate property, foreclosures, divorce, and settling estate. All these transactions could lead to a demand of real estate appraisers in Hawaii.

How to renew a real estate appraiser license in Hawaii?

All real estate appraisers in Hawaii are required to renew their license biennial 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.

Career Tips for Aspiring Real Estate 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: 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.

If you are reading up to this point, I bet you must be interested in the real estate appraiser profession. Your first step is to complete the pre-licensing courses. You should select one that has an excellent reputation and long-term track record of satisfying students. McKissock is exactly that! You may click here to check it out yourself. (**)

(**) 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 Hawaii Real Estate Appraiser Program.

Reference:

  • Department of Commerce of Consumer Affairs (source)
    • Real Estate Appraiser Program (source)
    • New Licensing Requirement for Real Property Appraisers (source)
  • The Appraisal Foundation- National Uniform Licensing and Certification Examinations (source)
  • PearsonVue – Hawaii Appraisers (source)
  • Appraisal Subcommittee- Active Appraiser Credentials Summary Report (source)
  • Sokanu.com: How much does a Real Estate Appraiser make in Hawaii? (Source)
  • Salary.com- Salary for Appraiser (Commercial Real Estate) in Hawaii (Source
  • Salary.com- Salary for Appraiser (Residential Real Estate) in Hawaii (Source)
  • HomeAdvisor – How Much Does A Home Appraisal Cost? (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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