How to Become a Real Estate Appraiser in Tennessee: Steps for Certification and Licensing

Embarking on a career as a real estate appraiser in Tennessee involves a structured process of education, experience, and examination. Real estate appraisers play a critical role in the property market by providing objective valuations critical for mortgages, sales transactions, and investment purposes. To ensure that appraisals in Tennessee are accurate and reliable, the state has established a set of requirements and standards that prospective appraisers must meet.

To become a licensed real estate appraiser in Tennessee, individuals must start by completing the necessary educational coursework, which includes a variety of topics such as property description, value principles, and legal considerations. After education, obtaining practical appraisal experience under a qualified supervisor is the next requisite step. Prospective appraisers must then pass a state-administered examination before they can apply for and receive their license. Throughout their careers, real estate appraisers must continue to maintain and improve their skills and knowledge to stay current with industry standards and legal requirements.

Key Takeaways

  • Real estate appraisers are essential for providing property valuations in Tennessee.
  • Tennessee requires specific education, experience, and examination for licensure.
  • Ongoing education is crucial for maintaining and advancing real estate appraiser credentials.

Understanding the Real Estate Appraisal Profession

Real estate appraisers play a pivotal role in property transactions, providing accurate value assessments pivotal for financing, selling, or developing real estate. Their evaluations ensure that all parties have a clear understanding of a property’s worth.

Roles and Responsibilities of an Appraiser

Real estate appraisers are professionals who conduct thorough research and analysis to determine the value of real property. Their key responsibilities involve inspecting residential or non-residential properties to assess the condition and identify any characteristics that could affect the property’s value. They must consider the highest and best use of a property, analyzing if its current use is the most profitable option or if there is a potential for alternative uses that could increase its value. Residential appraisers often specialize in dwelling units and homes, while certified general appraisers have the qualifications to appraise all types of real property, including large-scale agricultural properties.

The appraisal process includes collecting data about comparable properties, assessing market trends, and preparing detailed reports that highlight their findings and conclusions. It is essential for appraisers to remain impartial, delivering unbiased opinions on property values.

Types of Real Estate Appraisers

Generally, real estate appraisers are classified into two main categories: certified residential and certified general. Certified residential appraisers are qualified to appraise residential properties with one to four dwelling units without regard to transaction value or complexity. In contrast, certified general appraisers have no limits on the property types they can appraise and can assess both residential and non-residential real estate.

Furthermore, professionals focusing on residential real estate often work on individual home appraisals, whereas those with a certified general credential may appraise office buildings, shopping centers, and other larger commercial properties. These roles require extensive knowledge of the real estate market and adherence to strict ethical standards to provide accurate property value assessments.

Becoming a Real Estate Appraiser in Tennessee

To become a real estate appraiser in Tennessee, individuals must navigate the licensure process established by the Tennessee Real Estate Appraiser Commission, which includes completing education requirements, passing an examination, and fulfilling experience hours.

Overview of the Licensure Process

The pathway to becoming a licensed real estate appraiser in Tennessee involves several steps. Firstly, candidates must complete an 82-hour pre-license education. Following the education, the next step is to successfully pass a state-required examination. An application must then be submitted to the Commission with the relevant documentation and a fee. The specific documentation required includes a completion certificate from an Appraiser Qualifications Board (AQB)-approved PAREA program if applicable, qualifying education certificates, and proof of college level education.

Required Education Courses Fee State Required Exam
82 hours qualifying education $125.00 Yes

Prospective appraisers should note that all education providers and courses must be approved by the Tennessee Real Estate Appraiser Commission. Once licensed, a real estate appraiser in Tennessee can appraise properties without the need for supervision from a certified appraiser.

Tennessee Real Estate Appraiser Commission

The Tennessee Real Estate Appraiser Commission functions as the governing board responsible for the licensing and certification of real estate appraisers in the state. This commission sets forth the standards for real estate appraisal practice in Tennessee in accordance with federal guidelines.

The Commission is responsible for ensuring that all practicing appraisers have met stringent educational, examination, and experience requirements before granting them a license. They maintain a list of approved education courses and providers to assist candidates in fulfilling their educational prerequisites (How to Get a License or Certification – Tennessee State Government – In addition, the Commission is tasked with the continuous oversight and regulation of the profession to maintain public trust in the accuracy and integrity of real estate appraisals within the state.

Educational Requirements

To become a real estate appraiser in Tennessee, individuals must meet specific educational requirements that include a series of qualifying education courses and adherence to degree mandates.

Qualifying Education Courses

The foundation of education for real estate appraisers in Tennessee starts with qualifying education courses. Prospective appraisers begin with courses on Basic Appraisal Principles, covering essential valuation concepts, and proceed to Basic Appraisal Procedures, teaching practical application within the profession. For those aiming towards residential appraisal, coursework must include Residential Sales Comparison and Income Approaches as well as Residential Report Writing and Case Studies. Aspiring general appraisers must complete the broader scopes of General Appraiser Sales Comparison Approach, General Appraiser Site Valuation and Cost Approach, General Appraiser Income Approach, and General Appraiser Report Writing and Case Studies. Each course is geared towards imparting a rigorous understanding of the procedures and techniques crucial to the field.

For a complete list of the required education for each license level, the Tennessee Real Estate Appraiser Commission provides a detailed outline of the courses.

Degree Requirements

Tennessee mandates certain degree requirements as part of the educational prerequisites for real estate appraisers. A college-level education is necessary for higher levels of licensure. Specifically, to obtain a Certified Residential Appraiser credential, an applicant must possess at least an Associate’s degree, or have completed 30 semester hours of college-level courses. Those aiming to become a Certified General Appraiser need a Bachelor’s degree or higher. Additionally, all appraisers must complete the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) courses to ensure compliance with the national standards, including an update course every two years to stay current with USPAP modifications.

Refer to the official guide from the state government for more information on the degree requirements.

Appraisal Experience Requirements

Gaining the requisite appraisal experience is a fundamental step in the process of becoming a real estate appraiser in Tennessee. This experience ensures that appraisers have practical knowledge and can competently perform appraisals under various conditions.

Trainee Appraiser Experience

A trainee appraiser is required to complete a significant number of experience hours under the direct supervision of a certified appraiser. They must maintain a detailed experience log of their work, which demonstrates their ability to accurately appraise non-complex one-to-four family residential property as well as more complex one to four family residential units.

Certified Residential Appraiser Experience

To become a certified residential appraiser, one must accumulate specific experience hours that include direct supervision from a supervisor who has been a certified residential or certified general appraiser for at least three years. The experience must encompass a range of properties and appraisal situations to ensure a well-rounded educational foundation.

Certified General Appraiser Experience

The experience requirements for a certified general appraiser are more extensive, reflecting the broader scope of work they are authorized to perform. Beyond residential properties, certified general appraisers must also gain experience with a variety of commercial and complex real estate valuations, under the guidance of an experienced supervisory appraiser.

Each category of licensure mandates careful documentation of acceptable appraisal experience, which is subject to review and approval as part of the licensure process. The accumulation of experience hours is designed to build the skills necessary for producing credible and reliable appraisals in the state of Tennessee.

Examination and Licensing

To become a real estate appraiser in Tennessee, there are specific steps and requirements for each level of licensure, from trainee to certified general appraiser, including examinations and a formal application process.

Appraiser Trainee License

To obtain an appraiser trainee license in Tennessee, one must complete a required number of education hours and work under the supervision of a certified appraiser. It’s the initial step for those entering the field, providing the necessary foundation for practical experience.

State Licensed Appraiser License

After fulfilling trainee requirements, one can pursue a state licensed appraiser license. This involves additional education and experience hours, focusing on non-complex property appraisals with lower transaction values.

State Certified Residential Appraiser License

To qualify as a state certified residential appraiser, candidates must meet higher educational standards, accumulate specific experience hours, and deal with residential property transactions of increased complexity and value.

State Certified General Appraiser License

Aiming for a state certified general appraiser license requires the most stringent education and experience hours, enabling the licensee to appraise all types of real estate at any transaction value. This is the highest level of licensure, reflecting a broad competence in the appraisal profession.

Maintaining Appraiser Credentials

In Tennessee, real estate appraisers must adhere to specific requirements to ensure their credentials remain valid. These include a mix of ongoing education and regular license renewals.

Continuing Education

Real estate appraisers in Tennessee are required to complete continuing education (CE) to maintain their licensing and stay up-to-date with industry practices. Licensees must:

  • Complete 30 hours of approved continuing education courses within their two-year license period.
  • Ensure at least 7 of these hours cover the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) updates.

It’s also worth noting that joining the national registry may necessitate additional CE requirements.

License Renewal Process

The process for renewing an appraiser license in Tennessee involves several steps:

  1. Submission of Renewal Application: Licensees must submit a renewal application to the Tennessee Real Estate Appraiser Commission before the expiry of their current license.
  2. Education Hours Verification: Appraisers must provide proof of their completed continuing education hours.
  3. Fee Payment: Payment of the renewal fee is required, the amount of which varies based on licensure level.
  4. Letter of Good Standing: If applying for reciprocity with another state, a letter of good standing from Tennessee is often required to facilitate the process.

Appraisers should keep track of their license expiration dates and CE credits to avoid any lapse in their licensure status.

Advanced Career Considerations

Once a real estate appraiser has met the basic requirements in Tennessee, including education and experience under a supervisor, they may consider options for further advancing their career.

Specialization Paths

Real estate appraisers in Tennessee have the opportunity to specialize in different areas beyond standard residential appraisal. Specializations can lead to an increase in perceived value and possibly higher salary, as they provide services that require a particular expertise. Common paths include focusing on advanced residential applications, commercial property, or choosing a niche like historic properties. Each specialization may require additional education and experience to ensure the appraiser provides accurate and compliant appraisals.

Career Advancement

Career advancement for an appraiser can entail becoming a supervisor to appraiser trainees, obtaining higher licensing levels, or even starting their own appraisal firm. Advancement typically involves a combination of additional education in relevant areas such as statistics, modeling, and finance, along with a solid track record of professional conduct and performance. Climbing the career ladder can significantly affect an appraiser’s financial situation, often resulting in a higher salary and expanded professional opportunities.

Additional Appraisal Knowledge

In the realm of real estate appraisal in Tennessee, an appraiser must be familiar with specific standards and varied techniques to produce accurate and reliable appraisal reports.

Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP)

The USPAP sets the guidelines for ethical and performance standards in the appraisal profession. These standards are essential for ensuring that appraisal reports are credible and that appraisers conduct their tasks with impartiality and professionalism. It’s mandatory for appraisers in Tennessee to operate within these standards, which are maintained by the Appraisal Foundation.

Appraisal Methodologies and Techniques

Appraisal methodologies are crucial for appraisers to determine a property’s value comprehensively. These methodologies include:

  • Site Valuation: Determining the value of the land itself, separate from any structures on it.
  • Cost Approach: Estimating the value of property based on the cost of constructing a similar structure.
  • Sales Comparison Approach: Comparing the subject property with similar properties that have recently sold in the same market.
  • Income Approach: Calculating the value based on the income potential of the property for properties that can generate income.

For each approach, appraisers collect and analyze data specific to the property, such as residential market analysis, to guide their evaluation. They must have skills in residential appraiser site valuation for homes, general appraiser site valuation and cost approach for a variety of real estate types, as well as proficiency in general appraiser income approach. These skills are applied across various scenarios, from residential sales comparison to complex advanced residential applications.

Report writing, including residential report writing and general appraiser report writing and case studies, is a pivotal component in the appraisal process. Appraisers carefully detail their findings, analyses, and value conclusions in appraisal reports following USPAP guidelines. Lenders often rely on these reports to make informed decisions on lending, making the accuracy and inspections conducted by appraisers all the more critical.

Legal and Ethical Considerations

In the journey to becoming a real estate appraiser in Tennessee, adhering to strict legal frameworks and ethical guidelines is not just recommended, it is mandated. These parameters ensure that appraisers maintain professional integrity and public trust.

Regulations Governing Appraisers

The Tennessee Real Estate Appraiser Commission is the regulatory body entrusted with overseeing the licensing and certification of real estate appraisers. In Tennessee, individuals must comply with both state regulations and the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP). A candidate seeking to become a licensed or certified real estate appraiser must accrue relevant experience hours, complete a series of qualifying education courses, and pass the state-required examination.

  • Experience Requirements: Candidates must log 3,000 experience hours, which includes a substantial amount of non-residential appraisal work.
  • Education Requirements: A minimum of 300 hours of qualifying education is stipulated.

Furthermore, aspirants are required to hold at least a bachelor’s degree to proceed with their application.

Ethical Standards for Appraisers

Ethical standards for appraisers in Tennessee are grounded in the Code of Professional Ethics of the Appraisal Institute. These standards delineate the do’s and don’ts of professional conduct, emphasizing responsibilities such as confidentiality, avoiding conflicts of interest, and providing unbiased services.

  • Confidentiality: Protecting the privacy of the client’s information.
  • Conflict of Interest: Disclosing any potential conflicts to all parties involved.
  • Service Unbiased: Delivering unbiased opinions on property values.

It’s the role of appraisers to abide by these stipulations to uphold the public trust and maintain the integrity of the real estate appraisal profession.

Frequently Asked Questions

Embarking on a career as a real estate appraiser in Tennessee involves understanding specific state requirements and regulations. Prospective appraisers need to be informed about educational mandates, the duration of the licensure process, availability of online courses, salary expectations, reciprocity with other states, and common obstacles in the profession.

What are the educational requirements to become a licensed real estate appraiser in Tennessee?

Tennessee mandates 82 hours of qualifying education courses before one can apply for a real estate appraiser license. This includes specific coursework recognized by the Tennessee Real Estate Appraiser Commission.

How long does it typically take to complete the appraisal licensure process in Tennessee?

The duration of the licensing process varies based on individual circumstances. It includes completing the necessary education, gaining experience hours, and passing the state-required examination.

Can you obtain a real estate appraiser license in Tennessee through online education?

Yes, the state of Tennessee allows for online educational courses to meet the mandatory education requirements, provided they are approved by the Tennessee Real Estate Appraiser Commission.

What is the average salary for a real estate appraiser working in Tennessee?

Compensation varies by experience and location within the state. The salary tends to reflect the level of licensure as well as the demand for appraisal services in the local market.

Does Tennessee offer license reciprocity for real estate appraisers from other states?

Tennessee recognizes license reciprocity for appraisers from other states. Candidates are advised to check with the Tennessee Real Estate Appraiser Commission for specific reciprocal agreements and requirements.

What challenges might one face in the career as a real estate appraiser?

Appraisers might face challenges such as keeping up with changing regulations and market conditions, managing client expectations, and staying current with continuing education requirements. Adapting to these challenges is crucial for long-term success in this field.

About the author

Nina Sheridan is a seasoned author at, a blog renowned for its insightful exploration of the increasingly interconnected worlds of business, technology, and lifestyle. With a keen eye for the dynamic interplay between these sectors, Nina brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to her writing. Her expertise lies in dissecting complex topics and presenting them in an accessible, engaging manner that resonates with a diverse audience.