Federal appraisal requirements going under review, agency announces

KELOLAND.com Original

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Federal requirements to become an appraiser may be changing. 

In a news release Tuesday, the Appraisal Subcommittee (ASC) announced “a comprehensive legal and policy review of appraiser qualification criteria.” The ASC is the independent federal agency that oversees the real estate appraisal industry. 

The Council on Licensure, Enforcement and Regulation (CLEAR) will be selecting a number of organizations to conduct the review. 

The ASC says the federal requirements “are being reviewed to determine whether they, as currently established, ensure and promote fairness, equity, objectivity, and diversity, in both appraisals and in the training and credentialing of appraisers.” 

Specifically, the 15-hour and 7-hour national courses from the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) will be reviewed as will the “Real Property Appraiser Qualification Criteria.” 

The review to the appraiser qualifications comes as the industry received criticism from Gov. Kristi Noem (R-S.D.).

Noem, in a video response to an Associated Press story that details her daughter Kassidy Peters’ application to become a certified real estate appraiser, said she never “asked for special treatment for Kassidy” and added she’s “heard for years about how difficult it is to become an appraiser in South Dakota.”     

The Legislature’s Government Operations and Audit Committee sent letters requesting Noem’s Secretary of Labor, Marcia Hultman, and the former director of the state’s Appraiser Certification Program, Sherry Bren, to attend a meeting next week.

Jim Park, the Executive Director of the ASC, told KELOLAND News “in some ways” trying to become a licensed appraiser is too hard. 

South Dakota’s appraisal industry will not undergo another federal review of compliance standards until 2023. Park said the COVID-19 pandemic has delayed the ASC’s compliance reviews, which are comparable to an audit, until 2023. 

Amy Frink, a longtime appraiser based in Aberdeen, told KELOLAND News many appraisers know the designed system of getting people into the unique industry has its flaws. She said appraisers have been looking to find solutions and find ways to encourage more people to join the profession.    

Frink stressed all but one of the requirements to obtain an appraiser credential in South Dakota are federally mandated. South Dakota’s program required a trainee level exam, in which trainees could “take it as many times as it takes” and “very few people don’t pass it.”

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