The Appraisal Process
Maryland has developed licensing standards and procedures for the industry to ensure that practicing appraisers are knowledgeable in all the guidelines and requirements and are well versed in the ethics of the industry. The State of Maryland also administers the licensing exams and recommends the acceptable coursework required. In order to qualify for licensing, apprentice appraisers must work under close scrutiny and supervision of a certified appraiser who thoroughly reviews his or her work.
These precautions are in place to ensure that the estimate of value given on an appraisal report is as fair and defensible as possible; since it is, after all, an expert opinion of value and not a straight arithmetic computation.
What types of properties are appraised by a Certified Residential Real Estate Appraiser?
Property that is or can be lived in by its owner falls under the jurisdiction of the Residential Appraiser. These include cooperative and condominium apartments of any size or location, townhouses, attached houses, detached single family houses, houses in planned communities with shared amenities (these are sometimes called Planned Unit Developments), multi-family houses up to 4 units (larger would be considered a commercial property), vacation properties and large estates.
For these residential properties, large or small, the appraisal process is very similar. A residential appraiser can also appraise vacant land and mobile homes; although these types of properties are appraised less frequently for mortgage purposes.
Property which supports a commercial enterprise or business such as a restaurant, gas station, farm or retail store would require a commercial appraisal.