Frequently asked questions: Appraisers

Get answers to the frequently asked questions about appraiser licenses.


How can I get the required experience without an appraiser license?

You must work under the supervision of a certified appraiser as a registered trainee.

What standards of practice apply to real estate appraisers in the state of Washington?

The standards of practice for Washington licensed or certified real estate appraisers is the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) published by the Appraisal Standards Board of the Appraisal Foundation.

Does the law prevent a broker or salesperson from being paid for a price opinion?

No, RCW 18.140.020(1) says "compensation may be provided for brokers price opinions prepared by a real estate licensee, licensed under chapter 18.85 RCW."

Is it legal for an apprentice appraiser to prepare an appraisal report?

No. The law doesn't prevent an "appraiser trainee" from preparing an appraisal report, but it requires a review and signature of a certified real estate appraiser who acts a the supervisory appraiser. Remember that Standard Rule 2-3 USPAP requires the name of each individual providing significant professional assistance be stated in the certification of the report.

Where can I find the number of hours allowable for appraisals?

You may find the maximum hours allowable per property type in WAC 308-125-075.

What's considered a "complex" property?

A complex property is one that isn't typical when considering the following:

  • Age of improvements
  • Architectural style
  • Size of improvements
  • Size of site
  • Neighborhood land use
  • Potential environmental hazards liability
  • Limited availability of comparable sales data
  • Other unusual factors

Am I required to report the presence or absence of carbon monoxide detectors/alarms in my appraisal report?

Appraiser regulations, rules, and standards don't require you to report the presence or absence of carbon monoxide detectors in an appraisal report, nor are we aware of any legislation establishing responsibility for such reporting. A client may request you to report the presence or absence of a carbon monoxide detector. It is up to you to accept or refuse the assignment.

Can I accept a Hybrid or Bifurcated Appraisal Assignment?

Yes. In the state of Washington, appraisers must comply with the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) to develop and report credible appraisal results. USPAP does not require that you inspect the property you're appraising. The Scope of Work rule requires that you disclose the extent to which you inspected the property. An appraiser must disclose whether they did or did not inspect the property and certify to that in the appraisal report. USPAP requires an appraiser to identify the characteristics of the property. In doing so, an appraiser can use a combination of resources to do that including: property inspection, plans and specifications, public records, engineering reports, photographs, etc. to gather the relevant characteristics of the property. If the appraiser does not personally inspect the property, the appraiser must have a reasonable basis to believe that the individual performing the inspection is competent to do so, and the appraiser has no reason to doubt the work of the individual is credible information. An appraiser cannot allow assignment conditions, such as an inspection performed by someone else, to limit the scope of work to such a degree that the assignment results are not credible.

Practice logs

Are practice reports accepted as experience on the trainee experience logs? 

Yes. Real locations must be used and Appraiser Qualification Boards/USPAP standards still apply. For the lender/client column, use “N/A – practice” for their name. Photos are still required but online sources for them are allowed. Review reports, mock appraisals, and restricted reports are still not accepted. A supervisor needs to review and sign off on practice reports. Practice appraisal reports cannot make up more than 50% of your experience log entries.

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call Phone: 360-664-6504
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