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Why in the world would anyone want to become an appraiser?

Well, this is my first blog post. Ever. My wife has often encouraged me to write a blog, but I always resisted the idea, having long had my doubts about whether anyone would be even remotely interested in reading a blog written by an appraiser, hence my procrastination. So here I am giving it a shot, I guess I'll finally get to find out if anyone is interested or not. I have been doing this job so long (28 years now) that it has long since lost its luster and just doesn't seem very interesting to me any longer. Often I have people ask me earnestly "how do you become an appraiser?" Honestly, my first thought when I hear this question is, "why would you want to become an appraiser?" In the moment I usually answer with some sort of mundane response involving education requirements, training, licensing, apprenticeship, etc. But, when I really pause to think about it (which my wife and I have done on occasion), I realize there are at least a few reasons that would make being a real estate appraiser attractive as a career option, and most have precious little to do with the actual technical elements of the job. Probably for me the number one perk a career as a real estate appraiser offers is the option to work from home. Many appraisers decline to do this, for one obvious reason... the many distractions of home. Thankfully, this was not a problem for me. I loved working from home!

There are few careers available which offer a legitimate work-from-home experience, while still providing a reasonably good income. Being a real estate appraiser is definitely one of them. Working from home offers the ability to stay engaged with one's family on a daily basis, at least for me it did. And, again, I loved that. My wife was a stay-at-home mom and we home-schooled our son. So consequently, I had the opportunity to spend a lot of quality time with my family (yes, there were still many times I had to shut everything out and focus on work).

Some of my fondest memories are of spending time with my son; I was working and he was growing up; not just on the weekends, but every day of the week; in the office or "out in the field". Unfortunately, many moms and dads do not have the luxury of experiencing the joys of spending nearly every day with their kids, watching them grow up, teaching them and developing the kinds of relationships that only quantity of time can forge. Because of the freedom and flexibility my job offered, whether in the office or on the road, I had the joy of experiencing so many priceless moments that I wouldn't trade for the world: countless conversations, laughter, instruction, music, driving around, eating lunch together (unfortunately mostly fast food) and just plain hanging out with my young son. In addition to all of that, Tyler got to experience the grown-up world first hand, observing his dad interact with many different kinds of people and manage myriad complex situations. He had the good fortune to learn by example how to deal with a multitude of personal and professional interactions, both positive and negative. These were real world experiences that, in the aggregate, became an invaluable investment in his education and character and offered him a unique and valuable understanding of how the world works, in all of its mostly dull, sometimes exciting, sometimes funny and always unpredictable glory, up close and personal. I am sure there are other career paths which may have offered similar worthwhile moments between a father and his son, but considering all that I gained from those countless moments working and hanging out with my son, I can honestly say that, not only am I extremely grateful for my career as an appraiser, I wouldn't trade it for the world!

Well, I guess that's about it for now. I suppose that wasn't so bad. We'll see what you all think. I will spend some more time on this subject in future posts. Thanks for reading.

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