Choosing a Real Estate Appraiser

At some point, each of us will need a real estate appraiser. These are the independent fee appraisers that banks, insurance companies, courts, and the IRS rely on to estimate the market value of land, houses, farms, industrial, commercial, and retail property. It’s real estate appraisers we turn to for reliable and trustworthy opinions of value when real property is bought or sold, when estates are probated, divorces settled, bankruptcies adjudicated, partnerships dissolved, and when equity loans or mortgages are made. In short, much of our economy depends on the values determined by real estate appraisers.

State Licensing.
Real estate appraisers are so important, in fact, that every state in the union licenses them, although they license no other appraisal discipline. In truth, the licensing requirement stems, in part, from the great Savings & Loan debacle of the 1980s, caused in part by unscrupulous real estate appraisers. Whatever the reason, the requirement helps assure the public of real estate appraisers who meet minimum standards for education, experience, and ethics.

Professional Accreditation.
Naturally, in selecting a real estate appraiser, you want someone more than minimally qualified. That’s where professional organizations come into play. Unlike fraternal organizations or service societies, professional organizations offer accreditation and certification. The American Society of Appraisers, for example, doesn’t distinguish a member as an AM, Accredited Member, until after a minimum of two years full-time experience. An ASA, Accredited Senior Member, has a minimum of five years experience. All ASA accredited members must meet training and ethics requirements more extensive and rigorous than those imposed by the State licensing boards. To find an accredited appraiser, visit the websites of the ASA NY Chapter, the ASA NJ Chapter, or the ASA LI Chapter, all award-winning websites produced in our Webshop.

New York’s Best.
In the greater New York metropolitan region, where we live and work, we’ve found and can highly recommend several real estate appraisers whose work is of exceptionally high quality, whose careers include public service and service in professional organizations, and all of whom we’d characterize as “white hat” appraisers — professionals who adhere to the highest ethical standards. We’ve been happy to produce websites for these real estate appraisers, while turning down work from others with lesser credentials.

Ronald M. Gold: Commercial Real Estate Appraiser, NY
A past president of ASA’s New York City Chapter, Ron appraises commercial and residential real estate in the New York metro area. Ron, who is first Vice President of the Greater Harlem Real Estate Board, teaches at the Learning Annex, and at the Real Estate Board of New York.
Arleen Goscinski, ASA: Residential Real Estate Appraiser, LI.
Another ASA past president (LI Chapter) is Arleen Goscinski of Northport, a former real estate broker, now appraising residential real estate on Long Island. Arleen, one of our earliest website clients, is also active in the Columbia Society for real estate appraisers, where she is the Secretary of the Society.
Griffith Appraisals: Commercial and Industrial Appraiser, NJ, NY, PA.
Rounding out past president’s club, Tim Griffith is a past president of the NJ ASA Chapter, and serves now as New York Area Regional Governor. Concentrating on commercial and industrial real estate appraisals, he appraises properties in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Tim is a certified instructor for USPAP, the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice, the code of ethics written by the Appraisal Foundation and authorized by Congress.
NY Real Estate Appraisals: Commercial, Residential Appraiser for Westchester, Rockland, Putnam, NY
Jim O’Keefe focuses on commercial, industrial, office and retail real estate appraisals in Westchester, Rockland, and Putnam Counties in downstate New York. A real estate broker and past president of the New York State Society of Real Estate Appraisers, Jim offers over 40 years of real estate experience. He’s taught at Fordham’s Institute of Real Estate, and served on the Boards of Assessment Review in both Yonkers and Somers.

About Louis J. Bruno

I studied English and psychology at Columbia College and stayed at Columbia, doing postgraduate work in psychophysiology, then teaching and doing research for several years. To keep the wolf from the door, I migrated into retail sales and management, at first for Radio Shack, briefly for Savemart, and finally for Newmark & Lewis. When N&L collapsed, I went into business for myself, providing sales, service, and maintenance of computer systems; designing, hosting, and maintaining websites; providing custom software, mailers, and database services to the real estate industry; and serving as a business consultant. My interests include writing, traveling, jogging, swimming, biking, hiking, gardening, photography, history, art, jazz, swing, country and classical music, investing, management theory, civic activism, sustainability, particularly energy conservation, good government, the environment, and technology. And more to come, I hope.

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