Why hire MAI vs. appraiser with minimum qualifications (state license)?

At a minimum, all states require appraisers to be state licensed or certified in order to provide appraisals to federally regulated lenders.  Commercial real estate appraisers must hold the “Certified General” state appraiser license, but only a few hold the MAI designation awarded by the Appraisal Institute.

The Appraisal Institute is the largest real estate appraisal organization in the United States. It is the standard for professionalism in the industry. The objectives of the Appraisal Institute are the advancement of the science of appraising and the evaluation of interests in real property; the fostering of knowledge, integrity and the fair and accurate judgment of the value of real property; the professional advancement of its members; the promotion and propagation of sound, proper and ethical practices; and the promotion of adherence to USPAP and the Code of Professional Ethics of the Appraisal Institute.

The Appraisal Institute awards the MAI, its highest professional designation, to those who have successfully undertaken the rigorous educational, practical (peer-rated) experience and testing requirements and those committed to the Appraisal Institute’s Ethics and Standards. All of our Partners and Directors have attained the MAI designation.  Most of our other professionals are Associate Members of the Appraisal Institute.

Lenders, government agencies, courts, corporations, investors and individual property owners continually seek out the opinions of designated Appraisal Institute members to guide their real estate decisions because they know members are true professionals who have made a commitment to being the best in their field.

Appraisal Designations and Appraisal Report Quality

In “The Role of Professional Designations as Quality Signals”, J. Howard Finch, PhD, Larry Fogelberg, PhD, H. Shelton Weeks, PhD, The Appraisal Journal, the authors conclude that “designations are costly in that they involve the expenditure of both time and money.  It is precisely because of this cost factor that such voluntary designations provide valuable information to prospective purchasers of appraisal services…….the willingness to incur the costs of acquiring and maintaining a designation is a compelling indication that the appraiser will follow a high-quality production strategy