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Career and Education Opportunities for Real Estate Appraisers in Chicago, Illinois

If you want to be a real estate appraiser, the Chicago, Illinois area offers many opportunities both for education and employment. Currently, 4,070 people work as real estate appraisers in Illinois. This is expected to grow by 12% to 4,570 people by 2016. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for real estate appraisers are expected to grow by about 4.6%. In general, real estate appraisers appraise real property to determine its value for purchase, sales, or loan purposes.

Real estate appraisers earn approximately $23 per hour or $48,730 yearly on average in Illinois. Nationally they average about $22 hourly or $47,370 annually. Compared with people working in the overall category of Accounting and Auditing, people working as real estate appraisers in Illinois earn less. They earn less than people working in the overall category of Accounting and Auditing nationally. Real estate appraisers work in a variety of jobs, including: commercial real estate appraiser, real estate analyst, and staff appraiser.

There are nine schools within twenty-five miles of Chicago where you can study to be a real estate appraiser, among 180 schools of higher education total in the Chicago area. Real estate appraisers usually hold a Bachelor's degree, so you can expect to spend about four years studying to be a real estate appraiser if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Real Estate Appraiser

Real Estate Appraiser video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, real estate appraisers appraise real property to determine its value for purchase, sales, or loan purposes.

Real estate appraisers ready written reports that estimate property values, outline methods by which the estimations were made, and meet appraisal standards. They also search public records for transactions such as sales and assessments. Equally important, real estate appraisers have to inspect properties to review construction and functional layout, and to take property measurements. They are often called upon to photograph interiors and exteriors of properties to help in estimating property value and complete appraisal reports. They are expected to interview persons familiar with properties and immediate surroundings, such as contractors and realtors, to obtain pertinent data. Finally, real estate appraisers examine income records and operating costs of income properties.

Every day, real estate appraisers are expected to be able to see details at a very fine level of focus. They need to read and understand documents and reports. It is also important that they articulate ideas and problems.

It is important for real estate appraisers to draw land diagrams that will be used in appraisal reports to support findings. They are often called upon to testify in court as to the value of a piece of real estate property. Somewhat less frequently, real estate appraisers are also expected to testify in court as to the value of a piece of real estate property.

Real estate appraisers sometimes are asked to evaluate land and neighborhoods where properties are situated, considering locations and trends or impending changes that could influence future values. They also have to be able to examine income records and operating costs of income properties and verify legal descriptions of properties by comparing them to county records. And finally, they sometimes have to ready written reports that estimate property values, outline methods by which the estimations were made, and meet appraisal standards.

Like many other jobs, real estate appraisers must have exceptional integrity and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Chicago include:

  • Accountant. Analyze financial information and prepare financial reports to determine or maintain records of assets, liabilities, profit and loss, tax liability, or other financial activities within an organization.
  • Assessor. Appraise real and personal property to determine its fair value. May assess taxes in accordance with prescribed schedules.
  • Auditor. Examine and analyze accounting records to determine financial status of establishment and prepare financial reports concerning operating procedures.
  • Budget Analyst. Examine budget estimates for completeness, accuracy, and conformance with procedures and regulations. Analyze budgeting and accounting reports for the purpose of maintaining expenditure controls.
  • Compensation / Benefits Specialist. Conduct programs of compensation and benefits and job analysis for employer. May specialize in specific areas.
  • Credit Analyst. Analyze current credit data and financial statements of individuals or firms to determine the degree of risk involved in extending credit or lending money. Prepare reports with this credit information for use in decision-making.
  • Employment Recruiter. Seek out, interview, and screen applicants to fill existing and future job openings and promote career opportunities within an organization.
  • Financial Analyst. Conduct quantitative analyses of information affecting investment programs of public or private institutions.
  • Financial Examiner. Enforce or ensure compliance with laws and regulations governing financial and securities institutions and financial and real estate transactions. May examine, verify correctness of, or establish authenticity of records.
  • Income Tax Advisor. Prepare tax returns for individuals or small businesses but do not have the background or responsibilities of an accredited or certified public accountant.
  • Insurance Adjuster. Investigate, analyze, and determine the extent of insurance company's liability concerning personal, casualty, or property loss or damages, and attempt to effect settlement with claimants. Correspond with or interview medical specialists, agents, or claimants to compile information. Calculate benefit payments and approve payment of claims within a certain monetary limit.
  • Insurance Appraiser. Appraise automobile or other vehicle damage to determine cost of repair for insurance claim settlement and seek agreement with automotive repair shop on cost of repair. Prepare insurance forms to indicate repair cost or cost estimates and recommendations.
  • Insurance Underwriter. Review individual applications for insurance to evaluate degree of risk involved and determine acceptance of applications.
  • License Examiner. Examine, evaluate, and investigate eligibility for, conformity with, or liability under licenses or permits.
  • Loan Counselor. Provide guidance to prospective loan applicants who have problems qualifying for traditional loans. Guidance may include determining the best type of loan and explaining loan requirements or restrictions.
  • Loan Officer. Evaluate, authorize, or recommend approval of commercial, real estate, or credit loans. Advise borrowers on financial status and methods of payments. Includes mortgage loan officers and agents, collection analysts, loan servicing officers, and loan underwriters.
  • Personal Financial Planner. Advise clients on financial plans utilizing knowledge of tax and investment strategies, securities, and real estate. Duties include assessing clients' assets, liabilities, and financial objectives to establish investment strategies.
  • Tax Examiner. Determine tax liability or collect taxes from individuals or business firms according to prescribed laws and regulations.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Real Estate Appraiser Training

University of Illinois at Chicago - Chicago, IL

University of Illinois at Chicago, 601 S Morgan, Chicago, IL 60607. University of Illinois at Chicago is a large university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 25,709 students and an admission rate of 60%. University of Illinois at Chicago has a master's degree program in Real Estate which graduated twelve students in 2008.

Northwestern College-Southwestern Campus - Bridgeview, IL

Northwestern College-Southwestern Campus, 7725 South Harlem Avenue, Bridgeview, IL 60455. Northwestern College-Southwestern Campus is a small college located in Bridgeview, Illinois. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 995 students and an admission rate of 90%. Northwestern College-Southwestern Campus has a less than one year and an associate's degree program in Real Estate.

DePaul University - Chicago, IL

DePaul University, 55 E Jackson, Chicago, IL 60604. DePaul University is a large university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 22,554 students. DePaul University has a bachelor's degree and a master's degree program in Real Estate which graduated twenty-three and six students respectively in 2008.

Nothwestern College - Chicago, IL

Nothwestern College, 4829 North Lipps Avenue, Chicago, IL 60630. Nothwestern College is a small college located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 847 students and an admission rate of 83%. Nothwestern College has a less than one year and an associate's degree program in Real Estate which graduated zero and one students respectively in 2008.

City Colleges of Chicago-Richard J Daley College - Chicago, IL

City Colleges of Chicago-Richard J Daley College, 7500 S Pulaski Rd, Chicago, IL 60652-1299. City Colleges of Chicago-Richard J Daley College is a medium sized college located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 9,711 students. City Colleges of Chicago-Richard J Daley College has a less than one year program in Real Estate which graduated one student in 2008.

Roosevelt University - Chicago, IL

Roosevelt University, 430 S Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60605-1394. Roosevelt University is a medium sized university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 7,708 students and an admission rate of 43%. Roosevelt University has a less than one year and a master's degree program in Real Estate which graduated one and zero students respectively in 2008.

College of DuPage - Glen Ellyn, IL

College of DuPage, 425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn, IL 60137-6599. College of DuPage is a large college located in Glen Ellyn, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 25,668 students. College of DuPage has an associate's degree program in Real Estate which graduated one student in 2008.

Northwestern University - Evanston, IL

Northwestern University, 633 Clark St, Evanston, IL 60208. Northwestern University is a large university located in Evanston, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 20,128 students and an admission rate of 27%. Northwestern University has a master's degree program in Real Estate which graduated twenty-six students in 2008.

Oakton Community College - Des Plaines, IL

Oakton Community College, 1600 E Golf Rd., Des Plaines, IL 60016-1268. Oakton Community College is a large college located in Des Plaines, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 10,552 students. Oakton Community College has a less than one year program in Real Estate which graduated one student in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Accredited Rural Appraiser: Appraisals of agricultural enterprises and rural properties demand qualified experts who understand the complexity and intricacy of modern agriculture and today's rural environment.

For more information, see the American Society of Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers website.

Residential Evaluation Specialist: The purpose of the RES (Residential Evaluation Specialist) designation is to recognize professionalism and competency in the valuation of residential property for tax purposes.

For more information, see the International Association of Assessing Officers website.

Personal Property Specialist: The purpose of the PPS (Personal Property Specialist) designation is to recognize professionalism and competency in the valuation of personal property for tax purposes.

For more information, see the International Association of Assessing Officers website.

Certified Investment Management Analyst: The CIMA offers an intense educational experience focusing on asset allocation, manager search and selection, investment policy and performance measurement.

For more information, see the Investment Management Consultants Association website.

Certified Estate Specialist: A Certified Estate Specialist has advanced education in exactly how to deal with the settling of estates, from working with family members to dealing with lawyers and accountants.

For more information, see the National Auctioneers Association website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois
Chicago, Illinois photo by Dschwen

Chicago is situated in Cook County, Illinois. It has a population of over 2,853,114, which has shrunk by 1.5% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Chicago, 114, is well above the national average. New single-family homes in Chicago are valued at $200,500 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, three hundred eighty-one new homes were built in Chicago, down from eight hundred seventy the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Chicago are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and accommodation and food services. The average commute to work is about 35 minutes. More than 25.5% of Chicago residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Chicago is 11.6%, which is greater than Illinois's average of 10.5%.

The percentage of Chicago residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 57.6%, is more than both the national and state average. Southlawn United Methodist Church, Southern Missionary Baptist Church and Lakeside Evangelical Church are all churches located in Chicago. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Muslim Estimate and the Lutheran Church.

Chicago is home to the Five Crossings and the Wrigley Field as well as Monticello Park and Wilson Playground. Shopping centers in the area include Lincoln Village Shopping Center, Market Place at Six Corners Shopping Center and Kimbark Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Chicago can choose from Extended Stay America, Embassy Suites Lakefront and Cottage Inn for temporary stays in the area.