Education Requirement Comparison

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Comparison of Minimum Requirements in Pennsylvania
Requirement State Real Estate Commission State Board of Certified Real Estate Appraisers
Licensed Salesperson Licensed Broker Licensed Appraiser Trainee Certified Residential Appraiser Certified General Appraiser
Minimum Age 18 21 None, but can renew 2-yr license only 4 times n/a n/a
High School Diploma NO Yes, or equivalent Bachelor’s Degree required as of January 2015 Bachelor’s Degree required as of January 2015
College Education NO NO
Experience Requirement None 3 yrs as full-time salesperson; transactional requirements; valuation experience not required 2,500 hours appraisal experience over min. 24 months, accumulated only after 45 hrs of appraisal education obtained 3,000 hours appraisal experience over min. 30 months, accumulated only after 45 hrs of appraisal education obtained
Qualifying Education 60 hours RE instruction; no mandatory appraisal courses 240 hours RE instruction; no mandatory appraisal courses 75 hours of appraisal education, including 15 hours of USPAP 200 hours appraisal education, including 15 hrs of USPAP; courses must be 15 hrs in length 300 hours appraisal education, including 15 hrs of USPAP; courses must be 15 hrs in length
Examinations 3-hour test 3-hour test None 6-hour test 8-hour test
Continuing Education 14 hours every 2 years; no mandatory appraisal courses 14 hours every 2 years; no mandatory appraisal courses 28 hours every 2 years, including 7 hrs USPAP 28 hours every 2 years, including 7 hrs USPAP 28 hours every 2 years, including 7 hrs USPAP
Experience Requirements to Supervise Trainees/Salespersons n/a Can supervise salespersons immediately; no limit on number of salespersons that can be supervised by one broker n/a Min. 5 years Certified; maximum of 3 trainees can be supervised Min. 5 years Certified; maximum of 3 trainees can be supervised
Education Required to Supervise Trainees/Salespersons n/a None After 1/1/15, new trainees and their supervisory appraisers must take education specifically oriented to the requirements and responsibilities of Trainee Appraisers and Supervisory Appraisers
Property Inspection Requirements None None Supervisor must accompany trainee on property inspections until the assistant has logged a minimum 300 hours of appraisal experience
Note: USPAP = Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice

Responsible real estate valuation requires proven education and experience. Comparing the minimum requirements for salespersons, brokers and appraisers in Pennsylvania illustrates some striking differences.

General Education

Responsible valuation work requires a great deal of education. Licensed salespeople do not currently need to complete high school. Although licensed brokers need a high school diploma or equivalent, no higher education is currently required. A much greater level of education is required to become certified as an appraiser.

Appraisal Education and Experience

Brokers and salespersons need no valuation experience or appraisal education, while considerable appraisal experience and educational hours must be obtained before becoming a certified appraiser, including knowing and following the ethical standards found in USPAP. The exams for appraisers can take twice as long or longer as they contain specialized, in-depth testing on valuation topics. Also, continuing education requirements for appraisers are much more rigorous: currently double the number of hours required of brokers and salespersons.

Trainee Oversight

Brokers can supervise an unlimited number of salespersons immediately upon licensure. In contrast, an appraiser can supervise no more than three trainees, and then only after having been certified for at least five years. This comparative lack of supervisory oversight of salespeople creates a troublesome issue when coupled with their lack of education and experience in real estate valuation.

Since the goal of responsible real estate valuation is accurate and impartial values, the comparison table clearly illustrates how irresponsible it would be to let salespersons or brokers perform valuations with no valuation experience, insufficient training, no valuation education, no requirement to follow USPAP or other equally high ethical standards, and inadequate supervision.