17 Commercial Appraiser Interview Questions and Answers

Learn what skills and qualities interviewers are looking for from a commercial appraiser, what questions you can expect, and how you should go about answering them.

A commercial appraiser is responsible for estimating the value of commercial property, such as office buildings, retail space, or warehouses. The role of a commercial appraiser is to provide an objective estimate of the worth of a property, which is used by banks, investors, and property owners to make decisions about buying, selling, or leasing.

If you’re interested in becoming a commercial appraiser, you’ll need to have strong math skills and knowledge of the real estate market. You’ll also need to be able to effectively communicate your appraisals to clients. An interview is your chance to show off your skills and knowledge and demonstrate that you’re the best candidate for the job.

To help you prepare, we’ve put together a list of commercial appraiser interview questions and answers.

Common Commercial Appraiser Interview Questions

Are you familiar with the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice?

The USPAP is a set of standards that appraisers must follow to ensure their work is accurate and ethical. An interviewer may ask this question to see if you have experience with these standards and how they apply to the job. In your answer, explain what the USPAP are and describe any experience you’ve had using them.

Example: “I am very familiar with the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice. I took an introductory class on real estate appraisal in college where we learned about the USPAP. We also practiced applying the standards to our assignments. As part of my internship at a local bank, I was responsible for performing independent appraisals of commercial properties. I used the USPAP as a guide throughout the process.”

What are some of the most important qualities for a successful commercial appraiser?

This question can help the interviewer determine if you have the necessary skills and abilities to succeed in this role. When answering, it can be helpful to mention a few of your most important qualities and how they relate to the job.

Example: “I believe that one of the most important qualities for a successful commercial appraiser is attention to detail. This is because I need to make sure that all aspects of a property are accurately recorded during an appraisal. Another quality that’s important is communication. As a commercial appraiser, I often work with clients who may not understand what we do or why our reports are important. It’s my responsibility to explain these things clearly so that everyone understands.”

How would you conduct research to determine the value of a commercial property?

The interviewer may ask you this question to assess your research skills and how you apply them to the job. Use examples from past projects that demonstrate your ability to conduct thorough research, analyze data and make decisions based on your findings.

Example: “I would start by researching comparable properties in the area to determine their value. I would also consider factors like the property’s size, location, condition and amenities when determining its value. In my last role, I had a client who wanted to sell her commercial building but didn’t know what it was worth. I researched similar buildings in the area and found that they were selling for around $1 million. However, after looking at the building more closely, I determined that it was actually worth closer to $800,000.”

What is your experience with using computer software to perform appraisals?

The interviewer may ask this question to learn about your experience with computer software and how you use it in the workplace. Use your answer to highlight any specific skills or knowledge that you have regarding using computer software for commercial appraisals.

Example: “I’ve used several different types of computer software throughout my career, including some proprietary software from previous employers. I find that having a basic understanding of multiple programs helps me understand how each program works and what its strengths are. This has helped me become more efficient at performing appraisals because I can quickly adapt to new systems.”

Provide an example of a time when you had to negotiate a property’s value with an upset client.

Interviewers may ask this question to assess your interpersonal skills and ability to diffuse a situation. In your answer, try to highlight how you used your communication skills to resolve the conflict and maintain the client’s trust.

Example: “I once had a client who was upset about my valuation of their property because they thought I undervalued it. To address their concerns, I met with them in person to explain why I valued the property at that price. I also showed them comparable properties that sold for similar prices so they could see that I wasn’t overvaluing the property. They were satisfied with my explanation and agreed to accept the offer.”

If you discovered an error in your appraisal after it was completed, how would you correct the mistake?

This question can help the interviewer determine how you handle mistakes and errors in your work. Use examples from past experiences to show that you are willing to take responsibility for your actions and learn from them.

Example: “If I discovered an error after completing my appraisal, I would immediately contact the client to let them know about the mistake. Then, I would redo the entire appraisal at no additional cost to the client. In this situation, I would also make sure to include a note on the new report explaining what happened with the previous one.”

What would you do if you visited a property and discovered that it was in significantly worse condition than described in the report?

This question can help the interviewer assess your honesty and integrity. It also helps them understand how you would handle a challenging situation. In your answer, try to be as honest as possible while still being respectful of the client who hired you.

Example: “If I discovered that the property was in worse condition than described, I would immediately contact my supervisor or manager to discuss what happened. Depending on the severity of the issue, I may need to re-evaluate the entire property. If it’s only one room that is significantly different from the rest of the house, I might just adjust the value for that room. Either way, I would make sure that the client knew about the change so they could decide if they wanted me to continue with the appraisal.”

How well do you understand the legal requirements for appraising commercial properties?

The interviewer may ask this question to assess your knowledge of the legal requirements for appraising commercial properties. Use your answer to highlight any experience you have with these regulations and how well you understand them.

Example: “I’ve been a commercial appraiser for five years, so I’m very familiar with the legal requirements for appraising commercial properties. In my previous role, I was responsible for ensuring that all appraisal reports met federal guidelines. I also had to ensure that all appraisals were accurate and unbiased. To do this, I used valuation methods that are approved by the Fannie Mae standards.”

Do you have experience working with lenders to determine loan eligibility based on a property’s value?

This question can help the interviewer determine whether you have experience working with lenders and how your work may impact their business. Use examples from previous experiences to highlight your ability to collaborate with others, communicate effectively and solve problems.

Example: “In my last position as a commercial appraiser, I worked closely with several local banks to determine loan eligibility for potential clients. In one instance, I was hired by a client who wanted to purchase a property that had an existing mortgage on it. The bank needed me to provide them with information about the value of the property so they could decide if they would be willing to sell or refinance the property. After completing my appraisal, I determined that the property’s value was higher than what the current owner owed on their mortgage. This allowed the bank to approve the sale and release the funds to the seller.

When performing an appraisal, do you prefer to see the property in person or view photos and videos of the location?

This question can help the interviewer understand how you approach your work and what methods you prefer. Your answer should show that you are flexible in your appraisal techniques, but also highlight which method you find more effective.

Example: “I believe both seeing a property in person and reviewing photos and videos of it can be useful when performing an appraisal. Seeing the property in person allows me to get a better idea of its condition and overall value, while photos and videos allow me to compare multiple properties and ensure I am accurately valuing each one. In my experience, combining these two approaches has helped me provide accurate appraisals for my clients.”

We want to make sure our appraisers are up-to-date on local market conditions. What strategy would you use to stay informed about changes in property values?

This question can help the interviewer understand how you stay informed about changes in your local market and how you apply that information to your appraising. You can answer this question by describing a strategy for staying up-to-date on property values, such as subscribing to newsletters or websites that provide real estate news.

Example: “I subscribe to several newsletters and websites that report on recent sales prices of homes in my area. I find these resources helpful because they give me an idea of what’s selling for in my area and whether there are any trends developing. For example, if I see that homes with certain features are selling for more than others, I know that may be something I should take into account when determining the value of a home.”

Describe your process for ensuring that your estimates are free from personal bias.

Interviewers may ask this question to assess your ability to remain objective when conducting appraisals. To answer, you can describe a specific situation in which you were able to remove personal bias from an appraisal and the steps you took to ensure that it was accurate.

Example: “I once had a client who wanted me to overvalue their property so they could get more money for it. I refused because I knew that doing so would be unethical. Instead, I told them that if they really wanted to sell their property at a higher price, they should make improvements to increase its value. They did, and after six months of renovations, they sold the property for much more than what they originally asked.”

What makes you an ideal candidate for this commercial appraiser position?

Employers ask this question to learn more about your qualifications and how you feel you would fit into their company. Before your interview, make a list of reasons why you are the best candidate for this role. Think about what skills you have that match the job description and emphasize any unique or transferable skills you have.

Example: “I am an ideal candidate for this commercial appraiser position because I have five years of experience in real estate appraisal and my education is up-to-date with current trends. In addition, I am highly organized and detail-oriented, which makes me great at following processes and procedures. My communication skills are also strong, so I can work well with clients and other team members.”

Which types of properties have you appraised in the past?

This question can help the interviewer understand your experience level and determine if you have the necessary qualifications for the job. Use your answer to highlight your relevant skills, knowledge and abilities.

Example: “I’ve appraised residential properties of all sizes, including single-family homes, townhouses and condominiums. I also have experience appraising commercial properties, such as retail stores, office buildings and warehouses. In my last position, I was responsible for conducting a full appraisal on a property every six months. This included inspecting the exterior and interior of the building, reviewing financial documents and calculating the value of the property.”

What do you think is the most challenging part of being a commercial appraiser?

This question can help an interviewer understand what you think about your job and how you approach challenges. It can also show them that you’re aware of the difficulties in this career, which can be helpful if they are looking for someone who is self-motivated to overcome obstacles. In your answer, try to focus on a positive aspect of commercial appraising and explain why it’s challenging but rewarding.

Example: “The most challenging part of being a commercial appraiser is having to work with different clients every day. I enjoy meeting new people, but sometimes it can be difficult to get to know everyone well enough to provide them with the best service possible. However, I find that by putting in extra effort to learn more about my clients, I am able to build better relationships with them and give them more personalized attention.”

How often do you perform appraisals?

Interviewers may ask this question to learn about your experience level. If you have a lot of experience, they might want to know what types of appraisals you perform most often. If you are new to the field, they may be looking for an answer that shows you’re willing to do any type of appraisal work.

Example: “I usually perform one appraisal per week. I’ve done many residential and commercial appraisals in my career so far, but I’m always happy to take on more challenging projects.”

There is a significant difference between the value you place on a property and the amount the owner expects to receive. How do you handle this situation?

This question is designed to determine how you handle conflict and whether you can resolve it. Your answer should show that you are willing to have a conversation with the client about their expectations and help them understand why your value is different from theirs.

Example: “I always try to be as transparent as possible when I am conducting an appraisal. When there is a significant difference between my estimate and what the owner expects, I explain the process of determining value and provide examples of similar properties in the area. If they still disagree with my valuation, I will offer to re-evaluate the property at no additional cost.”


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