Time management is a big issue for many appraisers. Your income depends on how many appraisal assignments you can complete each month and each year—and you need time to do each report. In other words, time is money. We recently asked appraisers, “What’s one thing you wish you could STOP doing to save time in your workday?” Keep reading to learn which day-to-day tasks are the most common culprits for reducing an appraiser’s efficiency and productivity.
What do you wish you could STOP doing to save time in your workday?
1. Providing status emails
“Some AMCs send emails requesting the status of orders what seems to be every 2 hours. Honestly, the email usually involves a lengthy process where one must stop what they are doing for several minutes in order to respond. This is because the email is essentially only a reminder to the appraiser to log in and update the order status on their website. To do this involves several steps. You must log into their site, find and click on the order, click update, type in update details, and find the button on your small phone screen to click submit. What seems like a small task is time consuming and takes away from time to complete the report.”
“When you are juggling several appraisals at one time, it is very time consuming to log into each account and update the system when you could be using that time to work on the appraisal report in the first place. Between the never-ending slow internet as well as multiple passwords to remember, updating each report with a status several times a day is just not necessary.”
Do status emails take up too much time in your workday? Check out our post, 7 Ways for Appraisers to Spend Less Time on Email.
2. Answering addendum requests
“I get a lot of addendum requests that are usually spelled out in a report and just overlooked.”
“Requests for additional information have become redundant. Oftentimes it is already in the report.”
3. Answering phone calls
“Answering phone calls for status updates and other information is a thief of time and productivity. When you are focusing on something and have a rhythm going, that phone call stops that rhythm you have going and it can take some time to get back into that rhythm, regardless of how long you were distracted by the phone.”
“And answering the phone to emails that do not get an answer because I am out of the office on inspections.”
Time management tip: Set up an auto-reply email message explaining you are out of the office on inspections and you will respond to their email within 24 or 48 hours.
4. Monthly bookkeeping
“Monthly bookkeeping is a tedious and exasperating task to do. It takes a lot of time and, frankly, is no fun. It is repetitive, as the months just fly by without any extra time to delve into the bookkeeping aspect of the job. It is a task I wish I could stop doing in my workday that would save me a lot of time and headaches.”
5. Taking comp photos
“Having to obtain original photos of the comparable sales…HUGE time waster and dangerous too!”
“In my area, taking comp photos requires a lot of travel time. More often than not, comps are not in the subject town. A waste of time that could be better spent actually working on appraisals.”
“As with most appraisers, I work very long days, including weekends and sometimes holidays. I estimate that at least 8-10 hours of my week are spent driving by comparable sales to obtain an original photo. I understand that we are required to inspect the comparable sales. However, how many times have you had to obtain photos of the same property multiple times due to the changing seasons? Or, you spend one hour driving in a remote area, just for that original photo. Absolute waste of time!”
Time management tip: Consider hiring an appraisal assistant or having a trainee help out with this task. Read our hiring guide for tips.
For keeping up with tedious tasks like bookkeeping, obtaining comp photos, and answering phone calls and emails, an appraisal assistant or trainee may be the answer. If you have additional time management tips you’d like to share, feel free to reach out.