Welcome to the Bureau of Real Estate Appraisers of the State of California

Frequently Asked Questions - LicensingFrequently Asked Questions - Licensing

Information about BREA Forms

BREA's forms are all in PDF      format unless otherwise specified. Many forms have fields into which you can enter your data using the free Adobe Acrobat Reader. This form can then be printed, but the data is not saved when the document is closed unless you have the full Adobe Acrobat or Acrobat Business Tools software.

Questions

For USPAP-related questions, see the Appraisal Standards Board's Frequently Asked Questions.

Answers

Question: What is the status of my (upgrade, renewal, initial) application?

Answer: Check Your Application

Question: What courses and requirements do I need in order to upgrade my license to a Residential, Certified or General License?

Answer:

BREA License Levels Education Requirements Experience Requirements Scope of Practice
Trainee 150 hours, covering specific modules including the 15-hour National USPAP Course (or its equivalent as determined by the Appraiser Qualifications Board) None Any property which the supervising appraiser is permitted to appraise
Residential 150 hours, covering specific modules including the 15-hour National USPAP Course (or its equivalent as determined by the Appraiser Qualifications Board) 2000 hours and encompassing no less than 12 months of acceptable appraisal experience Any non-complex 1-4 family property with a transaction value up to $1 million; and non-residential property with a transaction value up to $250,000
Certified Residential 200 hours, covering specific modules, including the 15-hour National USPAP Course and an Associate Degree. In lieu of a degree, 21 semester credits in specific subject matters may be substituted 2,500 hours and encompassing no less than 2 .5 years (30 months) of acceptable appraisal experience Any 1-4 family property without regard to transaction value or complexity; and non-residential property with a transaction value up to $250,000
Certified General 300 hours, covering specific modules, including the 15-hour National USPAP Course and a Bachelors Degree. In lieu of a degree, 30 semester credits in specific subject matters may be substituted 3,000 hours and encompassing no less than 2 .5 years (30 months) of acceptable appraisal experience, of which 1,500 hours must be non-residential All real estate without regard to transaction value or complexity

Question: What continuing education courses do I need to complete for my renewal?

Answer: All licensed appraisers must meet continuing education requirements before they may renew their license.

The current term of a California real estate appraiser license is two years. Although proof of completion of the 7-hour National USPAP Update Course is required every two years and must be submitted with each renewal application, proof of completion of the remaining continuing education courses is required every four years. Applicants for license renewal must complete a total of 56 hour of continuing education during the four year cycle.

Continuing education must be completed during the continuing education cycle. The cycle starts with the issuance date of the current license (unless the license is the second in a four-year cycle). In addition, if a license is renewed during its two-year grace period, continuing education hours will accumulate during the grace period.

Example: On July 15, 2004, Appraiser A submits the "full continuing education required" renewal application along with proof of the required continuing education, and is issued a 2-year renewal license effective October 1, 2004, expiring on September 30, 2006. The issuance date of this new license starts the beginning of Appraiser A's "CE cycle start date."

On July 15, 2006, Appraiser A submits the "USPAP only" renewal application along with proof of the required 7-hour National USPAP Update Course and is issued a 2-year renewal license effective October 1, 2006, expiring on September 30, 2008. The renewal of this license will require proof of completion of 49 hours (7 hours would have been submitted in the prior renewal) of continuing education, which must include an additional offering the 7-hour National USPAP Update Course.

NOTE: Examination hours are not allowable toward continuing education hours. Therefore, the final examination does not need to be completed in order to gain credit for continuing education.

Minimum Continuing Education Requirements

Continuing education requirements for a real estate appraiser include:

  • An average of 14 hours of continuing education per year of the license term; and
  • Coverage of the required topics.

Required topics for all licenses:

  • USPAP - Each licensee must complete the 7-hour National USPAP Update Course or its equivalent as determined by the AQB) every two years. The course must also be taught by an AQB Certified USPAP Instructor who is a Certified Residential or Certified General appraiser in good standing.
  • Laws and Regulations - Licensees must complete the four-hour course entitled Federal and State Laws and Regulations, or licensees may certify that they have read and understand all applicable federal and state laws and regulations. However, the certification does not provide a 4-hour "credit" towards the required hours of continuing education.

Late Renewals

Licensees may renew a license within two years of the license expiration. However, licenses renewed during the two-year grace period are considered late and are subject to additional fees and education requirements. Late renewal licensees must pay late renewal fees and submit proof of completion of seven additional hours of continuing education for each six-month period the application is received after the license expiration date. Applications are considered late if they are postmarked after the expiration date of the license or if any of the required continuing education is completed after the expiration date of the license. Appraisers whose licenses have expired cannot legally perform appraisals in federally related transactions until the license is renewed.

NOTE: If a USPAP Only renewal application is submitted on a late basis, the additional continuing education will not be required until the Full Continuing Education renewal application is submitted.

BREA Course Approval

Continuing education courses, both classroom and correspondence, must meet the requirements of the AQB. The requirements for BREA approval of continuing education courses are:

  • Courses must be a minimum of two classroom hours long (classroom hour means 50 minutes within a one-hour period actually spent in presenting the course content).
  • Participants must have been present for at least 90 percent of the course hours to obtain credit for the course.

Equivalent Activities

Continuing education credit may be granted for other activities, such as writing published articles or textbooks on appraisal, and developing appraisal education programs. Up to 50% of continuing education may be completed through these activities, or by instructing appraisal classes.

Please visit BREA’s web site (www.orea.ca .gov) for details.

BREA Approved Courses

Continuing education courses that have already been approved by BREA allow for faster processing of renewal applications. Courses offered by providers that are private vocational schools or professional organizations are assigned an BREA course approval number. In addition, college and university may also be acceptable if the courses cover one of the topics listed below. The AQB allows, and BREA may grant, continuing education credit for courses that cover AQB approved topics.

The continuing education topics include:

  • Ad valorem taxation;
  • Arbitration, dispute resolution;
  • Courses related to the practice of real estate appraisal or consulting;
  • Development cost estimating;
  • Ethics and standards of professional practice, USPAP;
  • Land use planning, zoning;
  • Management, leasing, timesharing;
  • Property development, partial interests;
  • Real estate law, easements, and legal interests;
  • Real estate litigation, damages, condemnation;
  • Real estate financing and investment;
  • Real estate appraisal related computer applications; and/ or
  • Real estate securities and syndication.

Distance Education Courses

The AQB does not permit BREA to accept distance education courses unless they meet the following requirements:

  • Courses must be a minimum of two hours in length;
  • Courses must meet the requirements for AQB appraisal-related courses;
  • Courses must be presented by an accredited college or university, or they must be approved by the International Distance Education Certification Center (IDECC); and
  • Any course which is 15 hours or more includes a final examination which must be proctored by an official appointed by the presenting entity or by the sponsoring organization, consistent with the requirements of the course accreditation.

Course Completion Certificates

Course providers must provide course completion certificates to those who successfully complete course. Appraisers must not send completion certificates to BREA until it is time to renew their licenses. Appraisers must retain their completion certificates and attach them (photocopies are acceptable) to their application for renewal of their license.

Question: What do I need in order to apply for an initial trainee license, initial residential license, initial certified residential license, or certified general license?

Answer: Application Process:

State and federal laws provide that applicants must meet minimum education and experience requirements and must pass an examination prior to being licensed to perform real estate appraisals in federally related transactions. Requirements include appropriate knowledge of the English language including reading, writing, spelling, and knowledge of arithmetic computations common to real estate and appraisal practices. The following information is provided to answer some of the most commonly asked questions and to provide assistance in understanding the application process.

California law requires every applicant for a real estate appraiser license to provide facts that establish his or her true identity, character, and competence.

Every fact requested in the application is necessary and required to determine eligibility for licensure. An applicant must disclose the requested information, including any criminal convictions, on the application. Failure or refusal to provide any fact or information requested in the application may result in the application being rejected as incomplete or may subject the applicant to sanctions including, but not limited to, the denial of an application.

All applications for licensure are valid for a maximum period of one year and cannot be extended.

Minimum Age

Licensees must be at least 18 years of age.

Payment of Fees

Application fees must be paid by preprinted personal or company check, certified check, cashier’s check, money order, or government purchase order.

Initial Application

This section applies to applicants who are applying for the first time, or for individuals previously licensed who are no longer eligible to renew. Applicants may apply at any level of licensure for which they meet the requirements.

Application Process

To apply for an initial license, applicants must submit the following:

BREA processes applicant fingerprints via Live Scan for California residents at the time the application is approved.

NOTE: If you are applying for a California license but reside out of state, your fingerprints should be submitted on two (2) FD-258 fingerprint cards with your application.

Once an application is approved, BREA will issue an Admission to Examination letter and a "Request for Live Scan Service" fingerprinting form (see Examinations and Issuance on page 19). Upon successful completion of the exam, applicants then submit the Application for Issuance of License (REA 3008), a copy of the completed "Request for Live Scan Service" fingerprinting form (after being fingerprinted), and the balance of the license fee . The expiration date of an appraiser license is normally two years from the date of issuance.

Question: What can be counted as logged hours?

Answer: Credit toward meeting the minimum appraisal work experience requirements may be granted in the categories shown below. To be acceptable, experience must, at a minimum, meet the criteria listed after each category shown below and comply with USPAP.

NOTE: All work for which experience is claimed must have been performed for a business purpose (mock appraisal experience is ineligible). Effective January 1, 2008, experience may be gained through practicum courses that are approved by the AQB Course Approval Program. However, practicum experience cannot be credited for more than 50% of the total experience requirement.

Categories of Experience

Category 1. Fee and staff appraisal

A real property appraisal prepared by a person who is employed by another, usually a lending institution or government agency, or who is paid a fee for the appraisal assignments he or she performs shall:

  • Be a written document;
  • Use the entire appraisal process;
  • Use all appraisal methods (market, cost, income) customarily used for a particular property type (i .e ., residential, commercial, industrial, etc.);
  • Conform to USPAP, particularly Standards Rules 1 and 2; and
  • Include analysis completed by the applicant.

Category 2. Ad valorem tax appraisal

A real estate appraisal prepared by an appraiser to estimate a value that is used for property tax purposes:

Appraisal

Experience in this category shall:

  • Be a written document;
  • Use techniques to value properties similar to those used by appraisers; and
  • Effectively use the appraisal process.

Mass Appraisal

Experience in this category shall:

  • Use highest and best use analysis, model specification (developing the model), and model calibration (developing adjustments to the model); and
  • Be performed in accordance with Standards Rule 6 of USPAP.

This category is limited to appraisals performed as an employee or agent of a county assessor's office in another state, or the other state's equivalent of the California Board of Equalization.

Effective January 1, 2005, verification of work experience by affidavit is no longer acceptable. All applicants for Category 2 experience must document their work experience on the Log of Appraisal Experience (REA 3004) and the Experience Log Summary (REA 3003) forms. BREA will select work samples from the Log of Appraisal Experience (RE 3004).

NOTE: Other components of the mass appraisal process, by themselves, are not eligible for experience credit.

Category 3. Review Appraisal

A Field or Desk Review

Experience in this category shall:

  • Be limited to a maximum of 400 hours towards meeting the minimum experience hours required, but only after obtaining 1,600 hours of acceptable experience in other categories;
  • Not contain more than 50 percent of the hours in the performance of desk reviews;
  • Be a written document separate from the appraisal itself;
  • Be an appraisal prepared by employees, associates or others;
  • Not be signed by the reviewer of the appraisal being reviewed;
  • Conform to USPAP, particularly Standards Rule 3.

Category 4. Appraisal analysis

Experience in this category shall:

  • Be a written document; and
  • Conform to USPAP, particularly Standards Rules 4 and 5.

Category 5. Real estate consulting

Experience in this category shall:

  • Be a written document; and
  • Conform to USPAP, particularly Standards Rules 4 and 5.

NOTE: "Real Estate Consulting" does not include consulting done by a real estate broker or real estate salesperson to help a client determine list price or how much they should offer in purchasing property.

Category 6. Highest and Best use analysis

Experience in this category shall:

  • Be a written document; and
  • Conform to USPAP, particularly Standards Rules 4 and 5.

Category 7. Feasibility analysis and study

Experience in this category shall:

  • Be a written document; and
  • Conform to USPAP, particularly Standards Rules 4 and 5.

Category 8. Teaching of appraisal courses

(No longer eligible for experience credit.)

Category 9. Setting forth opinions of value of real property for tax purposes

Experience as an employee of a California County Assessor's Office or the California Board of Equalization in setting forth opinions of value of real property for tax purposes may be counted towards work experience (see Documenting Experience on page 15 of the BREA Licensing Handbook).

Effective January 1, 2005, verification of work experience by affidavit is no longer acceptable. All applicants for Category 9 experience must document their work experience on the Log of Appraisal Experience (REA 3004) and the Experience Log Summary (REA 3003) forms. BREA will select work samples from the Log of Appraisal Experience (RE 3004).

Category 10. Assisting in the preparation of appraisals

Experience in this category shall:

  • Be limited to a maximum of 400 hours towards meeting the experience requirements;
  • Be a written document;
  • Effectively use the appraisal process performing market research, data analysis and applying the appropriate appraisal techniques;
  • Conform to all applicable USPAP standards, state laws and BREA regulations.

NOTE: Seventy-five percent of the professional work in the appraisal report must have been completed by the applicant. The work experience must go beyond such tasks as taking photographs, typing the report, measuring improvements, or finding sales that may or may not be used in the appraisal.

Category 11. Real estate valuation experience as a real estate lending officer or real estate Broker

Appraisal

  • Same requirements as Category 1.

Review of Appraisals

  • Same requirements as Category 3.

Consulting

Experience in this category shall:

  • Be a written document; and
  • Conform to USPAP, in particular Standards Rules 4 and 5.

OTHER ACCEPTABLE EXPERIENCE

Practicum Courses

Effective January 1, 2008, applicants may gain up to 50% of the experience requirements through case studies and practicum courses that are approved by the AQB Course Approval Program.

Since BREA does not approve case studies and practicum courses, information for this program must be obtained from the AQB. California currently has no approved practicum courses.

DOCUMENTING EXPERIENCE

Applicants for a Residential License, Certified Residential License or Certified General License must document their experience on the Log of Appraisal Experience (REA 3004) and the Experience Log Summary (REA 3003). Please follow the instructions printed on the forms.

A Log of Appraisal Experience is required for all categories of experience. The log must document sufficient acceptable experience to meet the requirements for the desired classification. The log must also contain certifications on page 2 of the form.

Work Samples

Applicants are required to submit work samples from their Log of Appraisal Experience (REA 3004). BREA will request the work samples; APPLICANTS SHOULD NOT SUBMIT THEM WITH THE INITIAL APPLICATION. All work samples must be complete and in full conformance with USPAP requirements. If any of the work samples are found not to conform to any portion of USPAP, the experience claimed may be rejected and the application may be denied. The work samples submitted to BREA should cover a representative sampling of the applicant's work. Additionally, work samples for the certified levels should demonstrate the applicant's ability to perform complex assignments.

BREA reserves the right to require the submission of additional samples and/or complete work files. State law requires that documentation of work experience be made available to BREA upon request. Work samples are one such form of documentation and must be exact copies of completed appraisals submitted to clients for a business purpose.

Acceptable Appraisal Reports

BREA can only accept "Self-Contained" and "Summary" appraisal reports performed in accordance with Standards Rules 1 and 2 of USPAP. "Restricted" or "Restricted Use" appraisal reports cannot be accepted to meet experience requirements. In order to fully evaluate the experience, copies of work files and additional information may also be requested.

Categories of Experience

Category 1. Fee and staff appraisal

A real property appraisal prepared by a person who is employed by another, usually a lending institution or government agency, or who is paid a fee for the appraisal assignments he or she performs shall:

  • Be a written document;
  • Use the entire appraisal process;
  • Use all appraisal methods (market, cost, income) customarily used for a particular property type (i .e ., residential, commercial, industrial, etc.);
  • Conform to USPAP, particularly Standards Rules 1 and 2; and
  • Include analysis completed by the applicant.

Category 2. Ad valorem tax appraisal

A real estate appraisal prepared by an appraiser to estimate a value that is used for property tax purposes:

Appraisal

Experience in this category shall:

  • Be a written document;
  • Use techniques to value properties similar to those used by appraisers; and
  • Effectively use the appraisal process.

Mass Appraisal

Experience in this category shall:

  • Use highest and best use analysis, model specification (developing the model), and model calibration (developing adjustments to the model); and
  • Be performed in accordance with Standards Rule 6 of USPAP.

This category is limited to appraisals performed as an employee or agent of a county assessor's office in another state, or the other state's equivalent of the California Board of Equalization.

Effective January 1, 2005, verification of work experience by affidavit is no longer acceptable. All applicants for Category 2 experience must document their work experience on the Log of Appraisal Experience (REA 3004) and the Experience Log Summary (REA 3003) forms. BREA will select work samples from the Log of Appraisal Experience (RE 3004).

NOTE: Other components of the mass appraisal process, by themselves, are not eligible for experience credit.

Category 3. Review Appraisal

A Field or Desk Review

Experience in this category shall:

  • Be limited to a maximum of 400 hours towards meeting the minimum experience hours required, but only after obtaining 1,600 hours of acceptable experience in other categories;
  • Not contain more than 50 percent of the hours in the performance of desk reviews;
  • Be a written document separate from the appraisal itself;
  • Be an appraisal prepared by employees, associates or others;
  • Not be signed by the reviewer of the appraisal being reviewed;
  • Conform to USPAP, particularly Standards Rule 3.

Category 4. Appraisal analysis

Experience in this category shall:

  • Be a written document; and
  • Conform to USPAP, particularly Standards Rules 4 and 5.

Category 5. Real estate consulting

Experience in this category shall:

  • Be a written document; and
  • Conform to USPAP, particularly Standards Rules 4 and 5.

NOTE: "Real Estate Consulting" does not include consulting done by a real estate broker or real estate salesperson to help a client determine list price or how much they should offer in purchasing property.

Category 6. Highest and Best use analysis

Experience in this category shall:

  • Be a written document; and
  • Conform to USPAP, particularly Standards Rules 4 and 5.

Category 7. Feasibility analysis and study

Experience in this category shall:

  • Be a written document; and
  • Conform to USPAP, particularly Standards Rules 4 and 5.

Category 8. Teaching of appraisal courses

(No longer eligible for experience credit)

Category 9. Setting forth opinions of value of real property for tax purposes

Experience as an employee of a California County Assessor’s Office or the California Board of Equalization in setting forth opinions of value of real property for tax purposes may be counted towards work experience (see Documenting Experience on page 15).

Effective January 1, 2005, verification of work experience by affidavit is no longer acceptable. All applicants for Category 9 experience must document their work experience on the Log of Appraisal Experience (REA 3004) and the Experience Log Summary (REA 3003) forms. BREA will select work samples from the Log of Appraisal Experience (RE 3004).

Category 10. Assisting in the preparation of appraisals

Experience in this category shall:

  • Be limited to a maximum of 400 hours towards meeting the experience requirements;
  • Be a written document;
  • Effectively use the appraisal process performing market research, data analysis and applying the appropriate appraisal techniques;
  • Conform to all applicable USPAP standards, state laws and BREA regulations.

NOTE: Seventy-five percent of the professional work in the appraisal report must have been completed by the applicant. The work experience must go beyond such tasks as taking photographs, typing the report, measuring improvements, or finding sales that may or may not be used in the appraisal.

Category 11. Real estate valuation experience as a real estate lending officer or real estate Broker

Appraisal

  • Same requirements as Category 1.

Review of Appraisals

  • Same requirements as Category 3.

Consulting

Experience in this category shall:

  • Be a written document; and
  • Conform to USPAP, in particular Standards Rules 4 and 5.

OTHER ACCEPTABLE EXPERIENCE

Practicum Courses

Effective January 1, 2008, applicants may gain up to 50% of the experience requirements through case studies and practicum courses that are approved by the AQB Course Approval Program.

Since BREA does not approve case studies and practicum courses, information for this program must be obtained from the AQB. California currently has no approved practicum courses.

DOCUMENTING EXPERIENCE

Applicants for a Residential License, Certified Residential License or Certified General License must document their experience on the Log of Appraisal Experience (REA 3004) and the Experience Log Summary (REA 3003). Please follow the instructions printed on the forms.

A Log of Appraisal Experience is required for all categories of experience. The log must document sufficient acceptable experience to meet the requirements for the desired classification. The log must also contain certifications on page 2 of the form.

Work Samples

Applicants are required to submit work samples from their Log of Appraisal Experience (REA 3004). BREA will request the work samples; APPLICANTS SHOULD NOT SUBMIT THEM WITH THE INITIAL APPLICATION. All work samples must be complete and in full conformance with USPAP requirements. If any of the work samples are found not to conform to any portion of USPAP, the experience claimed may be rejected and the application may be denied. The work samples submitted to BREA should cover a representative sampling of the applicant's work. Additionally, work samples for the certified levels should demonstrate the applicant's ability to perform complex assignments.

BREA reserves the right to require the submission of additional samples and/or complete work files. State law requires that documentation of work experience be made available to BREA upon request. Work samples are one such form of documentation and must be exact copies of completed appraisals submitted to clients for a business purpose.

Acceptable Appraisal Reports

BREA can only accept "Self-Contained" and "Summary" appraisal reports performed in accordance with Standards Rules 1 and 2 of USPAP. "Restricted" or "Restricted Use" appraisal reports cannot be accepted to meet experience requirements. In order to fully evaluate the experience, copies of work files and additional information may also be requested.

Question: What can be counted towards work experience?

Answer: Credit toward meeting the minimum appraisal work experience requirements may be granted in the categories shown below. To be acceptable, experience must, at a minimum, meet the criteria listed after each category shown below and comply with USPAP.

NOTE: All work for which experience is claimed must have been performed for a business purpose (mock appraisal experience is ineligible). Effective January 1, 2008, experience may be gained through practicum courses that are approved by the AQB Course Approval Program. However, practicum experience cannot be credited for more than 50% of the total experience requirement.

Question: What courses are acceptable for basic education?

Answer: See the Find Education search feature of our website.

Question: What courses are acceptable for continuing education?

Answer: See the Find Education search feature of our website.

Question: What do the License Levels mean (i.e. AT, AL, AR, AG)?

Answer: There are four levels of real estate appraiser licensing. They are:

  • AT - Trainee License
  • AL - Residential License
  • AR - Certified Residential License
  • AG - Certified General License

Question: Can I e-mail my change of address?

Answer: Our law currently requires you to submit a specific form to update your information. Therefore, to change your address, telephone number(s), business name, etc., on BREA records, please submit the Change Notification and Miscellaneous Requests (REA 3011) form, which you can download by visiting our Forms page.

Since an original signature is required, please mail the completed form to our office at:
BREA
1102 Q St., Suite 4100
Sacramento, CA 95811

Question: How can I verify the validity of a license or find a licensed appraiser in my area?

Answer: For information on California licensed individuals, you may wish to check our Find An Appraiser page. You may also wish to check the Appraisal Subcommittee's website at www.asc.gov to search for licensees in other states.

Question: How do I obtain publications and application forms from BREA?

Answer: You may access our handbook, forms, and a complete listing of BREA approved schools via our website.

Adobe Acrobat Reader is available free via a link on our website. However, if for any reason you are unable to obtain the information from our website, you may call our office at (916) 552-9000 and we will be happy to mail any of the information that you request.

Question: Will a criminal conviction prohibit me from obtaining a real estate appraiser license?

Answer: Before an application is approved, BREA is required by law to determine whether an applicant has committed any crimes or acts which constitute grounds for denial of an application for licensure.

Any recent felony conviction may create a significant obstacle to obtaining a license. However, misdemeanor convictions that are not substantially related to the duties and qualifications of being an appraiser may not prevent an individual from getting a license. We are unable to determine whether or not an individual will be approved for licensure until all of the required information regarding any conviction(s) is submitted along with an application.

Question: How long will it take to process my application?

Answer: Although we make every effort to process all applications as quickly as possible, processing times can vary. Therefore, we are unable to estimate a general turnaround time for applications.

If any additional information is needed you will receive correspondence requesting the necessary information. If we have any questions that do not require your written response, we will contact you by telephone.

Question: How can I obtain a list of course providers? Are any distance education courses approved?

Answer: You may perform a search of currently approved courses and providers. (Please note, these lists do not include all accredited colleges and universities, who also offer courses that can be used for appraisal education).

The schools approved to offer distance education (i.e., correspondence) courses have the International Distance Education Certification Center (IDECC) designation on the BREA approved list of courses and providers.

Question: Why do I have to submit documentation of legal presence? Didn't I submit this with my original application?

Answer: All applications received on or after September 1, 1998, require that the applicant provide acceptable documentation of their legal presence in the United States. Therefore, if you applied for licensure prior to this requirement going into effect, you were not required to submit this information with your previous application(s).

Question: What if lenders won't let me sign appraisals as a Trainee licensee although I have a co-signer who is certified at the appropriate level for the type of property being appraised and in good standing with BREA?

Answer: As a licensed Trainee appraiser, you may accumulate experience hours without signing the appraisal in the following ways:

  1. By providing "significant professional assistance" to another appraiser and having the duties you performed identified in the report. If you perform at least 75% of the professional appraisal work and the appraisal conforms to the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP), this experience would qualify under Category 10 (Assistance in the Preparation of Appraisals) for up to a maximum of 400 hours of credit; and/or
  2. By performing the entire appraisal process under the direct supervision of a California certified appraiser. The final conclusion as to value is made by and the appraisal is signed by the licensed appraiser, with you and the duties you performed identified in the report. If you perform all appraisal methods customarily used for a particular property type and the appraisal conforms to the USPAP, this experience would qualify under Category 1 (Fee and Staff Appraisal) with an unlimited number of hours.

Question: How can I gain acceptable experience as an unlicensed appraiser?

Answer: Acceptable experience may be accumulated as an unlicensed appraiser in any of the following ways:

  1. By providing "significant professional assistance" to another appraiser and having the duties you performed identified in the report. If at least 75% of the professional appraisal work is performed by the unlicensed person and the appraisal conforms to the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP), this experience would qualify under Category 10 (Assistance in the Preparation of Appraisals) for up to a maximum of 400 hours of credit;
  2. By performing the entire appraisal process under the direct supervision of a California certified appraiser. The final conclusion to value is made by and the appraisal is signed by the licensed appraiser, with you and the duties you performed identified in the report. If the unlicensed person performs all appraisal methods customarily used for a particular property type and the appraisal conforms to USPAP, this experience would qualify under Category 1 (Fee and Staff Appraisal) with an unlimited number of hours; and
  3. By the unlicensed person completing appraisals him or herself in non-federally related transactions. In California, any appraisal completed for a federally related transaction requires a licensed appraiser. However, work performed for attorneys, private individuals, etc., are generally not federally related transactions and can be performed by anyone. If the appraisal conforms to USPAP, this experience would qualify under Category 1 (Fee and Staff Appraisal) with an unlimited number of hours.

Question: As a Trainee licensee, how can I find a supervising appraiser?

Answer: We are unable to provide any "recommendations" for locating supervising appraisers. However, you may wish to consider contacting some of the professional appraisal organizations (Appraisal Institute, American Society of Appraisers, etc.) in your area to see if any of their members are looking for trainee appraisers. If not, ask to get on their newsletter mailing list because opportunities for trainees may arise.

You may also consider contacting the County Assessor's office to see if there are any opportunities there.

You may also find appraisers by checking our Find An Appraiser page. You may perform a search of licensees by license level, in a specific city or by zip codes if you prefer.

Question: What states have reciprocity with California, and how do I apply for a reciprocal license?

Answer: As of July 1, 2013, BREA no longer offers Reciprocal Licenses. Use the Initial application process instead. On the Initial Application form, fill out the part indicating that you have a license in another state, and you are not required to complete the education or experience sections, or submit to testing.