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Career and Education Opportunities for Insurance Appraisers in Columbia, Maryland

There is a wide variety of career and education opportunities for insurance appraisers in the Columbia, Maryland area. The national trend for insurance appraisers sees this job pool growing by about 0.5% over the next eight years. Insurance appraisers generally 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.

The income of an insurance appraiser is about $23 hourly or $49,740 annually on average in Maryland. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $25 per hour or $53,440 yearly on average. Incomes for insurance appraisers are not quite as good as in the overall category of Adjustment and Analysis in Maryland, and not quite as good as the overall Adjustment and Analysis category nationally. People working as insurance appraisers can fill a number of jobs, such as: auto damage insurance appraiser, claims adjuster, and automobile field claims adjuster .

The Columbia area is home to 109 schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Columbia where you can get a degree as an insurance appraiser. Insurance appraisers usually hold a Bachelor's degree, so you can expect to spend about four years studying to be an insurance appraiser if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Insurance Appraiser

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

In general, insurance appraisers 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. They also prepare insurance forms to indicate repair cost or cost estimates and recommendations.

Insurance appraisers estimate parts and labor to repair damage, using standard automotive labor and parts cost manuals and knowledge of automotive repair. They also inspect repair cost estimates with automobile repair shops to secure agreement on cost of repairs. Equally important, insurance appraisers have to examine damaged vehicles to establish extent of structural or interior damage. They are often called upon to evaluate practicality of repairs as opposed to payment of market value of vehicles before accident. They are expected to decide on salvage value on total-loss vehicles. Finally, insurance appraisers arrange to have damages appraised by other appraisers to deal with disagreement with shops on repair cost.

Every day, insurance appraisers are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings.

Somewhat less frequently, insurance appraisers are also expected to arrange to have damages appraised by other appraisers to deal with disagreement with shops on repair cost.

Insurance appraisers sometimes are asked to ready insurance forms to indicate repair cost estimates and recommendations. And finally, they sometimes have to inspect repair cost estimates with automobile repair shops to secure agreement on cost of repairs.

Like many other jobs, insurance appraisers must be reliable and be able to deal with stress and deal with situations calmly.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Columbia include:

  • Assessor. Appraise real and personal property to determine its fair value. May assess taxes in accordance with prescribed schedules.
  • Business Management Analyst. Conduct organizational studies and evaluations, design systems and procedures, conduct work simplifications and measurement studies, and prepare operations and procedures manuals to assist management in operating more efficiently and effectively. Includes program analysts and management consultants.
  • Coroner. Direct activities such as autopsies, pathological and toxicological analyses, and inquests relating to the investigation of deaths occurring within a legal jurisdiction to determine cause of death or to fix responsibility for accidental, violent, or unexplained deaths.
  • Cost Analyst. Prepare cost estimates for product manufacturing, construction projects, or services to aid management in bidding on or determining price of product or service. May specialize according to particular service performed or type of product manufactured.
  • Emergency Management Coordinator. Coordinate disaster response or crisis management activities, provide disaster preparedness training, and prepare emergency plans and procedures for natural, wartime, or technological disasters or hostage situations.
  • 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 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.
  • 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.
  • Real Estate Appraiser. Appraise real property to determine its value for purchase, sales, or loan purposes.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Insurance Appraiser Training

Howard University - Washington, DC

Howard University, 2400 Sixth St NW, Washington, DC 20059-0001. Howard University is a large university located in Washington, District of Columbia. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 10,696 students and an admission rate of 49%. Howard University has a bachelor's degree program in Insurance which graduated eight students in 2008.


Associate in Insurance Services: The Associate in Insurance Services program is a nationally recognized educational program designed specifically for insurance personnel.

For more information, see the American Institute for CPCU and Insurance Institute of America website.

Collision Repair and Refinish: Damage Analysis and Estimating : The ASE Damage Analysis and Estimating (B6) Test complements the other tests in the Collision Repair Test series that identify and recognize collision repair technicians and refinishers.

For more information, see the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence website.

Accredited Marine Surveyor : Our Accredited Marine Surveyor® (AMS®) members must have a minimum of 5 years experience and must pass a written examination by our testing committee in order to earn his or her AMS® credential.

For more information, see the Society of Accredited Marine Surveyors website.


Columbia, Maryland
Columbia, Maryland photo by Jeff Kubina

Columbia is located in Howard County, Maryland. It has a population of over 96,421. The cost of living index in Columbia, 100, is near the national average.

The three most popular industries for women in Columbia are educational services, health care, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, public administration, and educational services. The average travel time to work is about 30 minutes. More than 59.0% of Columbia residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 28.7%, is higher than the state average.

The percentage of Columbia residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 49.3%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. Abiding Savior Lutheran Church, Atholton Seventh Day Adventist Church and Long Reach Interfaith Center are all churches located in Columbia. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the United Methodist Church and the Southern Baptist Convention.

Columbia is home to the Symphony Woods Office Center and the Rivers Corporate Park as well as Middle Patuxent Environmental Area and Clarksville Environmental Area. Shopping centers in the area include Governor Century Plaza Shopping Center, Atholton Shopping Center and Owen Brown Village Shopping Center. Visitors to Columbia can choose from PFMG, Courtyard by Marriott and Hilton Inn Columbia for temporary stays in the area.