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BREA appraiser training sessions underway

Training sessions are underway for licensed real estate salesmen and brokers to become Bahamas Real Estate Association(BREA) approved appraisers.

The first week of the training started yesterday at the British Colonial Hilton. BREA President Patricia Birch spoke toGuardian Businessabout the path the real estate practitioners are embarking on and the importance of training to the appraiser.

“You want to make sure you have a BREA-approved appraiser just in case[you]should ever end up in some sort of legal issue,”said Birch.”At least your appraisal would hold up in a court of law. If you get somebody who’s unlicensed, that appraisal would not be worth diddly.”

This week’s training is the first of two full training weeks that licensed real estate salesmen and brokers must undergo to become BREA-approved appraisers. The second week of training is scheduled for Spring 2011. According to Birch both are followed by a four to five hour exam, which will be held on Saturday for the current trainees.

The formal classroom training is only one component of the requirements for an appraiser to become BREA-approved.

“[Candidates]have to work under a BREA-approved appraiser for a minimum of three years.”said the BREA president.”They have to have him or her sign off on a certain amount of appraisals that they have done and assisted with, and they have to have proof of their professional indemnity insurance in addition to having a current license with the Bahamas Real Estate Association.”

The current minimum requirement in relation to professional indemnity insurance to be an approved appraiser is$250,000, according to Birch.

Birch was asked about the perceptions that requirements such as the 3-year mentorship requirement creates an’old boys network’, locking individuals not directly associated with existing realtors out of the process.

“I would prefer to go to a doctor who did an internship in a hospital where he learned as much as he could,”Birch said.”I don’t want to go to the doctor who just graduated from college, I want to got to a doctor who’s knowledgeable and knows what he’s doing.

“As far as I’m concerned it’s not creating an old boys network. What it’s doing is creating actual practical experience, apprenticeship and mentoring.”

Birch said that the association has over 600 members,”Any of whom could participate in that class.”

The BREA president said that appraising is a special field within the real estate realm, adding that the field requires a lot of number crunching.”Its sort of like the’accounting’of real estate,”he noted

“Appraisals are done for many reasons,”Birch added.”Many people think appraisals are just done when you have to get a mortgage from a bank, but appraisals are also done for insurance purposes, they’re done when people want to put their house on the market and determine what’s the value of the property, they’re done for companies doing their profit sheets.”

He continued,”We find that for people who are going to do[appraisals], the more knowledge they have the better appraiser they’ll be,”Birch said. A list of BREA-approved appraisers is published twice per year, according to Birch, and is available from BREA.

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